A home is usually seen as the perfect dwelling place, where you can rest after a long and exhausting day from work. And where you can have those little but memorable family moments. However, this is a complete contrast to basements, especially a windowless basement. Basements are often used as storage spaces by homeowners and individuals. That said, many homeowners are often perplexed and ask if one can live in a windowless basement.
It’s not advisable or safe to live in a windowless basement. The reason is that there’s no ventilation, there are poor lighting conditions and many more issues. Furthermore, you could get sick due to mold growth, the spread of radon, and sustain severe injuries. In the worst-case scenario, you could lose your sanity.
Thus, I’d recommend you rent an apartment with windows, doors and sufficient ventilation.
Are you a homeowner or an individual seeking to rent a basement? Would you like to know more about basements and their health effects? Well then, read further as you’ll discover many interesting facts.
Is it Illegal to Live in a Basement?
When it comes to the law and all legal matters, people tend to become scared and shy away from them. This is the case for landowners/landlords that rent out their basements to individuals.
Sometimes, these basements do not meet the legal requirements suitable for living. Unfortunately, people rent them ignorantly (especially low-income families) due to a shortage of income.
Nevertheless, basements are not illegal for habitation, but they must meet some requirements. With that established, below are some of the conditions;
- Fixation of windows: the windows installed should be at least two in number to allow fresh air, sunlight, and proper ventilation.
- Height of the ceiling: the ceiling must be at least 6 feet inches. It must be high enough if it’s meant for renting to individuals.
- Size of the door: the door should be at least 32 inches by 78 inches. It would be best if you did this before renting it out.
- Improvement of lighting conditions: you should fix energy bulbs to increase the light in the basement.
- Fire-resistant walls: walls that are resistant to fire should be built to secure the lives and properties in the basement.
- Drainage facilities: Proper drainage facilities will reduce mold growth, keep the floor dry, and reduce the risk of illness.
In addition, landowners/landlords must adhere to the following requirements, which makes basements legal for habitation. Otherwise, they could be subjected to face trial or imprisoned as the case may be.
What are the Health Effects of Living in a Basement?
Over the years, basements have been built in various homes with only one intention in mind, which is “storage.” More often than not, basements are seen as the last dwelling place man can live in.
The reason is that basements are built underground, and they’re often dark. As a result, some drainage facilities could be constructed near it, leading to mold growth. This growth is hastened by the lack of ventilation and a damp floor. Mold releases spores in the air, which causes serious health issues. That said, I’ll highlight some health issues caused by mold in a basement;
- Respiratory infections
- Irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat
- Cough and phlegm build-up
- Shortness of breath
- Chronic allergic reactions
Subsequently, you run the risk of experiencing lung cancer (which could be fatal) and sustaining significant injuries. In addition, the growth of mold could also damage your personal belongings. As a result, it is best to avoid residing in a basement to avoid these serious health challenges. Moreover, who doesn’t like a comfortable and cozy house? Where you can relax and breathe in the fresh air. Thus, I’d recommend a solid and well-built apartment for anyone.
Tips to Make Your Basement More Comfortable for Living
Comfort is one thing that everyone desires, to lay down comfortably on your couch while watching TV or looking through your phone. And you can also get that comfort from your basement.
Now, I know you might find it weird and maybe wondering, how is that even possible? Well, when it comes to décor and adding spice to your basement, you can consult professional interior designers.
Nevertheless, you can also do it yourself. You can make your basement warm, colorful, and bright. With that established, below are some tips that can help you out;
- Lighting: as I mentioned earlier, you need to improve the lighting conditions to live comfortably in a basement without fear. Get floor or table lamps, chandeliers, and compact fluorescents. All these will add light and brighten up your basement.
- Add decorations: mirrors, paintings/artworks, curtains, and many more add a certain sparkle to your basement. It also creates a warm and inviting feeling.
- Window treatment: bring in new windows to allow maximum sunlight and natural brightness.
- Furnishing: furniture adds color and warmth to your basement.
- Functional and effective flooring: if you intend to turn your basement into your living space then, it is best to use a concrete floor as a wooden floor will only invite mold.
- Consider colors: this is by far the best way of eliminating the darkness in your basement. You can make good use of light, warm and neutral colors. Colors such as yellow, white, grey, blue, green, red, pink, purple, and many more. Colors add life and meaning to everything. Painting your basement with these colors will make your basement more lively and comfortable to live in.
In addition, you can turn your basement into your game room, storage space, and a playroom for kids. Plus, you don’t need to live in your basement due to certain health factors. But, if you must then, you’ll have to adopt sanitary practices to maintain good health and a hygienic environment.