Looking to convert a basement into a cool new apartment? Whether you’re hoping to create a new space for your teenager or a lucrative lodging space, you can makeover your basement to suit any need. With some bold furniture or neutral colors, you’ll convert a basement into a welcoming apartment. 

Read on to learn 10 chic basement apartment ideas that will impress anyone!

1. Go for a Minimalist Vibe

Want to make a basement apartment seem bigger? Keep the furniture clean and minimal. Try a Mid-Century Modern sofa style with a few footstools. And avoid coffee tables or bookshelves with fussy ornamentation. 

Clean lines will help the space seem uncluttered. And if you choose furniture with neutral colors and toss in a few bright throw pillows, you’ll create an inviting space.

2. Bring the Natural World to Your Basement

A simple way to convert a basement into a welcoming environment is to introduce more plant life — and maybe an aquarium. Why not repurpose a rustic table as a terrarium station. Or if you have a walkout basement with generous windows, introduce window boxes bursting with plants. 

Place some ferns and other houseplants on wooden or metal shelves to accentuate their textures. The green of the leaves will look striking against a wall freshly painted in coral, yellow, or white. And for another touch of interest, introduce an aquarium with some colorful fish!

3. Try Accent Walls

A pop of color always looks good. While you don’t want to chop up a basement apartment space with too many color changes, consider introducing a burst of pumpkin or plum paint. 

Another option is to go with fun printed wallpaper on one smaller wall. Put vintage wallpaper behind a bed’s headboard to create a dreamy sleeping space.

4. Warm Things Up with Orange and Brown

When you want to add warmth to a basement, reach for orange, brown, and yellow. Limiting your color scheme to these colors ensures that you’ll create a space that always feels sunny.

Opt for mirrors and picture frames edged with gold or brass. Try a burnt orange area rug beneath a rich chocolate loveseat. And paint the walls in a soft yellow to complete the look.

5. Basement Apartment Ideas Include Mixing Materials

For a homey and contemporary basement apartment, try mixing materials. Go with cork floors, marble countertops, and some natural stone accents.

Introduce wooden beams to the ceiling. Or make a raw edge coffee table the centerpiece of your lounge area. With natural materials, you’ll be working with a consistent color scheme — so feel free to mix and match!

6. Build More Storage in a Basement Apartment

When you’re brainstorming basement conversion ideas, don’t overlook the importance of good storage. While you can purchase industrial storage units at your local big-box store, you’ll gain a more attractive space with some built-ins. 

If you have a nook for a television, flank it with some built-in shelves. Better yet, add some cupboards beneath the television for the ultimate entertainment center. Add cupboards and a pantry to your kitchenette, too, so guests always have a place to stash their snacks.

7. Embrace White Walls

The easiest way to make a room feel bigger is to paint it white. Add in some wall scones or recessed lighting for an extra layer of brightness.

White is a blank slate and will make the colors of your furniture and decor pop. If you have an exposed ceiling, consider painting it white, too, to help it feel higher.

Basement apartment design can go in any direction with clean white walls. Stick with upholstered furniture in muted colors and light wood for a beachy theme. Or make things more dramatic with a wall of abstract art and mirrors.

8. Add a Kitchen

If you’re hoping to accommodate family members or make your basement into a profitable lodging option, make sure it has the right features. Adding a small kitchenette with granite countertops and an eating area will let you convert a basement into a true home.

If you need an accessory dwelling unit (ADU) for your loved ones, you want it to have all the essential amenities. Pre-approved ADUs offer a roadmap to creating a complete living space!

9. Go Big with Art

Nothing adds drama and focus to a blank wall like a work of art. If you’re trying to break up a long stretch of wall space, use a large painting or photograph to get the job done. That way you can anchor a sitting area and keep it distinct from an eating zone just a few feet away.

Find art at a local secondhand shop and consider doctoring it yourself! Add in some flourishes of color that help tie the piece to the colors of the furniture around it.

10. Build Vertically

Basements can seem dark and cavernous. But if you aim to stretch the walls with your furniture choices, you’ll create the illusion of more height.

Buy tall and skinny bookshelves that approach the height of the room. Or add built-ins that utilize an entire wall. As another strategy, and a cluster of small pictures that extends from just above the sofa to the ceiling.

Explore Basement Conversion Ideas

Test out some basement apartment ideas before choosing the color scheme and style that suits your space. Harness as much natural light as possible, or introduce some fun and effective light fixtures. You can transform a drab downstairs space into the ideal living situation!

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