Chances are your basement is boring. Unless you have spent thousands of dollars finishing your basement and outfitting it to turn it into a beautiful rec room or Man Cave, it is probably unexciting at best. Your basement is a big part of your home though. If your basement is currently serving no purpose other than housing your laundry and items collecting dust, it is time you did something about that.
Whether your basement is finished but not tricked out, partially finished, or unfinished, there are things you can do to make your basement way more fun than it currently is. The best part is, you won’t have to break the bank to do it. Here are some inexpensive ways to make a basement more fun.
A Deck of Cards and Poker Chips
Turning your basement into a legit poker room is easy, inexpensive, and cool. With a very small investment, you can invite your friends over and have an exciting, private poker anytime you want. At the bare minimum, all you need to do this a deck of cards and a good set of poker chips. Once you have that, you are on your way. If you want to go one step further, you can upgrade your multi-purpose card table to a poker table for relatively cheap as well.
To start your basement poker room conversion, you need a pack of playing cards. They don’t need to be special, expensive, or military-issue cards, a simple pack that costs $3 or less is absolutely fine. After that, you will want to spend a little more on a nice set of poker chips. You can get a functional set for $15 and a professional-grade set for around $100-$150. To get an idea of what type of set is right for you, check out this poker chips buying guide from Giftwits. Add a poker table for a few hundred dollars if you want and you have a new basement poker room for $300 or less.
Basement Driving Range
Do you know what would be an awesome addition to your basement if you are a golfer? A golf simulator! Unfortunately, if you don’t have an extra $5,000 to $25,000 laying around, that is probably out of your budget. Luckily, if you are an avid golfer who wants to get some swings in away from the course and have a basement with high ceilings, you can easily and cheaply make a homemade driving range. All it takes is two cheap and easy purchases and you are on your way.
The first thing you need for your homemade basement driving range is a big net to hit into. You need to buy a net that is long enough to hang from the ceiling to the floor with some excess on the ground to catch the balls and at least 5 or 6 feet wide. Also, make sure the holes are small enough that the balls won’t get through and that the material isn’t so stiff that the balls will bounce back at you. You can get a 12-foot section of gold impact netting for around $5. After that, all you need is a piece of AstroTurf to hit off so you don’t damage the clubs or your floor. You can get a spare square of turf for around $3 or a golf-specific one that comes with a built-in tee for $20 or $30. That means that less than $50 gets you a beautiful basement driving range.
Knee Hockey Arena
If you have a partially or completely unfinished basement, that smooth concrete floor can be like a sheet of ice. That’s why it is the perfect surface to build a knee hockey arena on for your kids to have hours of fun and friendly competition on. If you are not familiar with knee hockey, it is a sport kids play with small plastic hockey sticks and a foam or soft rubber ball or puck. It is just like the game of hockey but all the players are on their knees. Especially if you have kids who have a lot of energy or like to roughhouse, this is a great game for them.
You can pick up a set of knee hockey balls for around $5 and a set of sticks for around $10. For $30 you can get a complete knee hockey set that comes with two sticks, a ball, and two small goals. That is all you need for a basement knee hockey arena. If you want to get crafty and take it to the next level, a quick scan of Pinterest will show you how to make DIY hockey boards from cardboard or plywood. Your kids will love the “rink” and will love pretending they are miniature versions of their favorite NHL players.
A Home Bar
If you don’t have the budget to create a full Man Cave in your basement, you can still make a proper home bar without spending a fortune. This will give you and your friends a private space in your house to get away and have a drink when you want/need one. To create a bar that is more than just a folding chair and a cooler of beers, you need three main elements; a bar, seating, and cocktail-making supplies.
Like the poker table discussed before, you can easily spend thousands of dollars on an incredible home bar but you don’t have to. For around $300 you can get a small, prefabricated bar that will be a very nice addition to your basement. Add to that some simple bar stools for around $50 a piece and you are well on your way. For an additional $200 to $300 you can fully stock your bar with a selection that would make any local cocktail establishment proud. Then, Voilà! For under $1,000 you have a real home bar in your own basement.
Sure, we would all like to have a basement worthy of being featured on the old MTV show Cribs but most of us don’t have the budget. Don’t let that stop you from creating something cool down there though. There are plenty of inexpensive ways to make your basement much more fun!