When Jaymie Shook and husband Corey moved into their new home, they made the space under the basement stairs a playroom for young sons Max and Mason. The area first needed a major clean out.
“It was just chock full of junk. When we got here there was tile in there, there was carpet in there and most of all, dust,” Shook said.
Utilizing once-ignored areas like this is a trend nationwide.
“Our members tell us that home is where their families feel most comfortable, so it’s not surprising at all that they’re looking to use every square inch of space to the best of its ability,” Angie’s List founder Angie Hicks said.
The Shooks’ under-stairs space became their kids’ superhero hideout. They laid carpet that Jaymie’s parents had left over from a remodel, put up some drywall, and Max and Mason decorated.
“I don’t know if because it’s dark, like a hideaway kind of spot where adults can’t see them, but yeah, it’s definitely a draw,” Shook said.
While that DIY project cost almost nothing, others are going all-out.
“If you’re unsure how to use those dead spaces in your home, a good contractor can give you lots of ideas,” said Hicks. “One member, for example took part of their unfinished basement and turned it into a recording studio. What better way to live out your dreams.”
Rob Norris hired Gonzalez Home Improvement and Construction, and Dylco Electric, to create a studio for daughter Samara. The $30,000 room’s rustic design features custom brick and rough-sawn cedar, with each board individually stained for visual variance. LED lighting and artwork brighten the space, which houses Samara’s audio equipment. Fiberglass sound-absorption panels create the recording area she always wanted.
“The vintage, barn-type antique look is what I love. It’s a very relaxed, simple, peaceful space,” Samara said. “It’s great for creativity, but also to pray, think or just breathe, away from the chaos.”