The man cave.
Whether you're single, married, a family man, recently retired, every man desires a place in his home that is his own.
A place he can escape to after a hard days work.
A place he can hang out with his friends without having to worry about the outside world.
A place he can watch his favorite sports team in peace.
No matter what the ultimate goal of this room is, it is often referred to as the man cave.
If you're a bachelor, your entire home can be your man cave.
If you're married with a family, the man cave is one room in your home that you have complete control over.
Your wife can decorate the rest of the house as she sees fit, but this room, this room is for you.
If you're ready to create your man cave, your oasis inside your home, this article is for you.
We'll give you tips, tricks, ideas and handy lists that will help you create the man cave of your dreams.
Why The Basement Is Perfect For Your Man Cave
First of all, we have to decide where to put the man cave.
You want a place that isn't visited by the rest of your family.
You'll need to find a room that doesn't get a lot of foot traffic, so you aren't bothered.
Most importantly, you'll need to find a room that you can make your own, with little to no objection from your wife or anyone else in the house.
That's why your dungy old basement is the perfect place to put your man cave.
Who's going to object when you tell them you want to transform the cold, wet, dirty, unfinished basement? No one.
There are also a few other perks of choosing the basement for your man cave.
- You can alter and change the basement in any way you choose. It's a blank slate when it comes to design.
- It's big enough to accommodate all of your stuff. Couches, pool table, big screens and the like can fit down in your basement no problem.
- It has ample wall space for decorations. No matter how you choose to decorate your man cave, your basement has plenty of room for the decorations. You can even add walls if you need to.
- It's secluded from the rest of the house. If you're looking for a place to escape to get some time to yourself, the basement is the place to do it.
Prepare Your Basement
Now that we've chosen the basement to house our man cave, it's time to get it ready. This section is especially important if your basement is mostly unfinished.
- Prepare the Walls – Waterproof and seal the walls to keep the water out. The last thing you need is water leaking through your walls and ruining your stuff.
- Prepare the Floors – Just like the walls, you need to waterproof and seal your floor. If you plan on installing laminate or any other type of flooring, you should use a waterproofed underlayment.
- Get a Sump Pump – If you've had a history of water and moisture problems in your basement, you need a sump pump.
- Prepare the Ceiling – Unless you're going for the old industrial look, you probably want to hide the wires and beams by installing a ceiling. Make sure the pipes are not leaking, and you may want to insulate the pipes, too. Drop tiles are a fast way to get your ceiling up while leaving access to the pipes and wires above.
- Run Electrical and Internet Wiring – If you need to have electrical outlets added, wiring for overhead lighting, or want hard-wired access to your internet modem, do this first.
- Plumbing – If you want a kitchen or bathroom in your man cave, you need to run the plumbing for these first.
- HVAC – If you do not have any air vents in the basements yet but want to add some, do this before you start your design. If you already have some and you install a ceiling, you'll need to have them lowered.
Those are some basic things you'll need to do before you start your design. If you need to, don't hesitate to hire qualified contractors.
Using a contractor ensures that everything is done correctly and satisfies current building code standards.
Don't worry; you can do this without breaking the bank. After the initial costs of finishing the basement, you can keep costs as low as you need them.
Here's a quick list you can use to determine your budget:
- Get the dimensions of your basement.
- Make a list of what materials you will need, such as drywall, paint, and flooring.
- Using the measurements, estimate the quality of the materials you want for the project.
- Obtain pricing on the materials and multiply these by the quantity needed.
- Total up the costs to get a rough estimate of your project budget.
After this, you can start planning how you'll go about your design. You can decide if you will reuse items and get creative, or buy everything new.
Recycling and Upcycling are very popular now and would be great options for your man cave.
You'll also need to decide if you'll do the work yourself, or if you will hire a contractor.
If you use a contractor, it's a good rule of thumb to add an extra 15% on top of your estimated costs. This helps you prepare for the unexpected.
Pick a Theme
Now the fun starts. Now you get to pick the theme for your man cave. You usually choose your theme based on what your man cave will be used for most often. There are an endless amount of themes you can have in your man cave.
- Bar Most guys will have a bar installed in there man cave regardless of the theme, but why not go the extra mile and make a full-fledged bar for you and your friends? The design choices here are endless. You can make an upscale Irish themed bar with polished wood, a hipster bar, or a dingy old dive bar. Your only limit is your imagination.
- Gamer This is perfect for the guy who's old enough for his man cave but isn't too old for his video games. Fill your man cave with the classic old arcade games, or line the walls with flat-screen TVs and your favorite gaming consoles.
- Cinema If you're a movie buff, this one's for you. Going to the movies is fun, but the crowds, ticket prices, and rude moviegoers are not. Get surround sound, motorized recliners, a projector and a screen that takes up the majority of the wall. Throw in a popcorn machine, and you're set.
Man Cave Essentials
No matter what you choose for your theme, there are a few must-haves for every man cave. Copy this list below and take it with you to the store to grab everything you need.
- A microwave and toaster oven
- A refrigerator
- A large screen television(s)
- Plenty of comfortable chairs and sofas
- Plenty of tables
There you have it. Now you are ready to start designing your personal paradise in the comfort of your own home.
Follow these guidelines, and you'll be the most popular guy in the neighborhood.
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