Adding a legal suite to your basement is a great way to earn extra income with tenants. Even if you don’t rent right away, that suite can be used for visiting family or as a space for adult kids to move into. Creating an appealing legal suite requires planning and specific requirements.
Dastjerdi Ltd. in Ottawa is a professional general contractor company. They share what you need to consider when turning your basement into a legal suite:
Know the legalities
Before starting any plans or renovations, you must know what the city requires to build a legal basement suite. You can read what is needed to add a secondary dwelling to your home in Ottawa.
For example, the suite must have 145 square feet of space with 1.95 meters of ceiling height. It must also have heating, cooling and electrical systems that an Electrical Safety Authority electrician has approved. Dastjerdi Ltd. has licenced trades on staff including a licenced plumber and electrician.
In addition, it must have egress windows that can be used as a means of escape if needed and a second escape means. Ensure a fire-rated ceiling, including fire-rated beams and posts for fire safety. A fire-rated wall or ceiling is designed to resist the impact of a fire for a given period and is essential to protecting both the lower and upper unit.
If you have questions about any requirements, Dastjerdi is happy to help. Working with a general contractor ensures that these specifications are all met before and during your basement suite renovation.
Install a full kitchen
A smaller kitchenette may work if you plan to use the suite for visiting friends or family but not for renters. When designing a rental suite, you want to incorporate a full kitchen and one that includes a dishwasher. That appeals much more to potential renters who can enjoy a comfortable living space without sacrificing function. If there is space for a small kitchen island, that can help add to the visual appeal, but don’t make the kitchen too dominant in size. You still need room for a living room and dining space, so plan according to the layout.
Include a shower and bath
When planning the bathroom, don’t skimp on certain details. For example, while the two don’t have to be separate, having just a shower or just a tub isn’t an ideal setup. One or the other is preferred for some, so having a tub-shower combination is the best option. That way, you can appeal to every preference and appeal to more quality tenants.
Keep it an open concept
If you have the flexibility in your basement, opt for an open layout concept. Basements can feel smaller and darker with closed-in rooms. Therefore, consider opening things up and placing windows in every space. It creates a sense of spaciousness, makes the area look bigger and maximizes lighting. It also leaves more room and space for renters to customize where they want to set up furniture or organize their space. A general contractor can also help ensure the kitchen fits into an open layout and maximize both natural and electric lighting.
Add some unique appeal
If you have the budget and the space, consider adding some unique basement suite features. Heated flooring, for example, is an excellent addition in a basement where the floors can get cold. A gas fireplace will certainly help with warmth and add a great visual feature to the space. If you need ideas in the given layout, talk with your general contractor and get their expertise and input on some options.
General Contractors in Ottawa
Dastjerdi Ltd. brings over 10 years of experience in renovations and home improvement projects. They can help you design and build legal basement suites and other renovations, including bathrooms, kitchens, and more. If you want to develop the basement or improve your home, trust the professionals at Dastjerdi Ltd.