Basement Development Cost

Average Basement Development Costs

Our most often asked question is naturally.. ‘How much would my Basement Development cost’ ?

After a variety of different projects, the easiest way to explain it would be… It’s really up to what each homeowner would like for their space.

There are so many variables & material preferences that a one size fits all approach ISN’T accurate or realistic. One homeowner may want a simple 1 bed & 1 bath for the kids or teenagers, while the next may wish for a 1 bed, 1 bath with laundry or wet bar for entertaining.

The short answer is that, an average 1 Bed+1 bath  Calgary basement development ends up in the $25,000 – $30,000  range for spaces approx. 650 sq/f & the more common choice we see is a 1 bed, 1 bath, living room & mechanical room.

The long answer is that, there are many variables and finishing choices that can factor into any total budget.

We prefer to stay away from sales pitches of Bronze-Gold or Platinum type of basement packages. They are never accurate & more often than not cost more than the project should be. We prefer to build ideally what each homeowner would like for their space. 

Each basement development project we work on is viewed as a standard custom basement and we start from there as each homeowner has different preferences & options they are considering. 

A standard basement is ideal for homeowners who have a simple space & would just like to have another TV room or common area. They don’t wish to have a basement bathroom installed & would just like some more finished space.. A standard basement without a bathroom usually comes around the 18-20k range depending on a few factors such as total s/f of the space, stairwell finishing, lighting choices & flooring choices etc.

Including a Basement bathroom usually adds between $6000-$8000 & beyond depending on personal preferences.(ex. standard tub/shower with or walk-in with glass doors & tile etc). One contributing factor in this price range is whether or not the plumbing rough-ins are in place. Having to add the rough-ins & drainage can easily run $500-$1500 to break the concrete floor, have the plumbing installed, inspected, and cement over again.

As far as basement development ideas go: most homeowners in our experience choose a 1 Bed+1 bath, living room & mechanical room. The reason we see this more often than not is, in most cases it just makes sense. The extra bathroom usually makes sense for resale value, while EXCLUDING a second bedroom usually helps keep the budget in line.

Wet-bars and kitchenettes are other common choices that can increase the cost of developing a basement. Wet-bars typically start at around 2000-$3000 depending on homeowner preferences (ex. stone or laminate countertops, backsplash, wine fridges etc) including the plumbing and electrical.

Fireplaces are another item that can add to the total basement development cost. Gas fireplaces can start around $3000 for the gas line, permits, product, and install. But by the time you have added your mantle, and stacked stone or tile or anything else to dress it up, it is easy to be in the $5000 range depending on individual taste.

Many homeowners today have turned to electric modern fireplaces to stay at a lower price point. A mid-level electric can be installed for under $1500 (Product, Electrical, Install) while the gas fireplaces have other City of Calgary permit requirements.

There are many other factors that can affect any basement development cost. Some common ones to consider are the amount of lighting wanted for any space. Keep in mind that a large number of pot-lights are slightly more expensive than dome lights to purchase from suppliers & install.

Home Theatre considerations such as speakers and speaker wiring.

Ceiling Height – Ceiling heights are more commonly 8-ft.

Staircase Finishing/Railing/Landing.

Adding Subfloors(Dri Core Subfloor or equivalent product).

Adding Roxul Safe and sound insulation for ceiling & mech room

Heating and Ventilation changes/additions.

Built-In Shelving etc.


So as you can see, every construction or renovation project has many variables & can be completed to whatever each homeowner would like for their space.. Some wish for basic finishings to add a simple TV space, while others prefer to have bedrooms, laundry or space for entertaining. 


Approx. 400 – 700sq/f
Average costs with All Permits, Materials, Labour, Trades etc.


Approx. 700 – 1000sq/f
Average costs with all Permits, Materials, Labour, Trades etc.


Approx. 1000 – 1500+ sq/f
Average costs with All Permits, Materials, Labour, Trades etc.

 Any accurate basement renovation cost or project quote would require an on-site visit to discuss what options a homeowner may be considering, or what needs their space may have with respect to layout, Plumbing, HVAC, etc. but an average project would require the following: 


  • Wiring for 3 rooms(1Bed, 1Bath, 1Common Areas)
  • Tamper proof/Arc-Fault receptacles to meet Building Code
  • Choice of standard dome lights
  • Choice of 6 recessed 4 or 5” pot lights
  • Decora switches & dimmer for living room
  • Smoke/CO2 detector
  • 1 Coax (Cable) Outlet
  • 1 Cat-5 (Internet) Outlet
  • GFCI for Bathroom Circuit
  • Vanity Light
  • Exhaust Fan
  • All standard electrical requirements to meet Alberta Building Code


  • Install of materials for smooth surface walls
  • Moisture board for Bathroom
  • Corner drywall beads
  • Standard ceiling texture


  • Framing for Interior walls and bulkheads
  • Pressure treated bottom plates
  • Cold air returns brought to ground level


  • Interior Doors –  3 hollow-core doors(Bed, Bath, Mech)
  • Baseboards: Match main-floor or alternative
  • Trim/Casing: Match main-floor or alternative
  • Windows: MDF extensions and casing for Bedroom & Common area
  • Closet: Standard closet with up to 6′ bi-fold door and Wire Shelving
  • Brushed nickel handles and closet knobs
  • All vents and registers
  • Door stops
  • Standard bathroom hardware(towel bar, toilet roll, faucets etc)


  • Tie-in to builder rough-ins existing
  • 60” Standard molded tub or equivalent 
  • Delta/Moen shower fixture 
  • Standard Duel Flush Toilet 
  • Vanity of Choice or $600+/-
  • Vanity, Faucet, Mirror/Finishings


  • Choice of laminate or carpet (stairwell carpet)
  • Carpet includes install and 8lb underlay
  • Or laminate/vinyl product 


  • 12’x12′ or 12’x24′ tile for bathroom floor and tub surround
  • Choice of Ceramic or Porcelain
  • Backsplash for Vanity
  • We also prefer using Ditra Underlay


  • Standard handrail painted to match trim
  • Carpeted stairs with wrapped stringers
  • Trim to cap stringers


  • 1 coat primer
  • 2 coats for walls (colour choice of homeowner)
  • Trim in latex white semi-gloss
  • Doors in latex white semi-gloss


  • Site cleaned & tidy daily
  • Final clean & touch-ups
  • Rental Bin for waste

We are experienced Basement Renovation Contractors in CALGARY, Airdrie, Okotoks & Chestermere. If you are considering a Basement Development project or would like an accurate basement renovation cost estimate, we welcome to hear from you & please use our Contact page to get in touch.