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long - need advice about 1970's basement family room

16 years ago

A few years ago we purchased a bilevel house. You walk in front door, there is a small landing and 7 steps up to main living area and 7 steps down to family room. The family room has a door to garage and a fireplace opposite that door. We also have a sliding patio doors out to a former patio that had a 1980's sunroom addition.

The walls have inexpensive paneling and 2x4 acoustical ceiling tiles.

At the very least we want drywall and more ceiling lighting, and new ceiling tiles, possibly changing to 2x2 size. I don't think there is drywall under the paneling. Also, probably no insulation; it is a block wall basement.

We have just enough electrical outlets, but adding a couple extra could be ok. And while we are at it, replace the baseboard electric heaters and thermostat. We use the propane fireplace for heat though.

After that, a better, fire resistant, door to garage and new sliders.

I would like to see the brick fireplace get a "facelift" but that might be expensive and not sure how the existing propane insert could fit with a new tile or stone surface.

So, where do we start?

Remove ceiling & grid, and paneling. This is the point where we will call in help.

What kind of insulation is a good choice? Winters here are cold but usually doesn't get below 5 degrees.

Then the wiring for new lighting, electric outlets and maybe new cable outlet on other side of room.

What thickness drywall? And I am thinking changing the mouldings right along with the new drywall.

Then the ceiling & new lighting.

At this point we could just wait on new doors and fireplace facelift, then carpeting last.

I welcome any advice on the best plan of action or materials or cost saving ideas.

Can the current ceiling metal grid be left in place during this process? Trying to save on costs, but if we want new 2x2 tiles then probably not.

Thanks for making it to end of this very long post.

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