South Drive basement Renovation in St. Catharines

renovation overview

RENOVATION TYPE: Basement renovation to a create a legal rental unit.

LOCATION: Situated in Old Glenridge in St. Catharines, this historic neighborhood is known for its picturesque streets, mature trees, and architecturally diverse homes dating back to the early 20th century. 

MAIN CHALLENGES: When the home was bought in 2021, the basement rental unit did not comply with legal building code requirements. The new homeowners were eager to transform it into a legal basement apartment, seeing it as an investment for future rental opportunities.

RENOVATION COST: Classified as an “Ultimate Level” renovation, projects such as this can cost around $140,000+ as per our renovation cost guide. 

Niagara basement kitchen renovation with white cabinet, sink, and open wooden shelf

Before The Renovation

Scope of Work

This basement renovation project spotlight features a transformative journey from an illegal two-bedroom rental with cramped living and kitchen areas to a bright, airy one-bedroom apartment with an open-concept living space, now fully compliant as a legal rental unit. Initiated with a comprehensive planning phase, the project included the development of new floor plans accompanied by construction drawings, a critical step that laid the foundation for a successful renovation. Securing a renovation permit from the City of St. Catharines was a pivotal milestone, ensuring all changes were in line with local building codes and regulations.

The renovation commenced with a complete demolition of the existing basement, a process that paved the way for significant structural improvements, including the replacement of a structural beam. This crucial update not only enhanced the safety and integrity of the space but also facilitated the creation of additional headroom, contributing to the open, expansive feel of the apartment.

Key upgrades were implemented throughout the apartment to elevate its functionality and aesthetic appeal. The introduction of a new egress window introduced natural light, transforming the atmosphere of the space. Flooring and paint were refreshed, while the plumbing and electrical systems were completely overhauled to meet current standards. The kitchen underwent a total revamp with new cabinets, countertops, backsplash, hardware, faucets, and under-cabinet lighting, turning it into a modern and inviting area. The bathroom received a similar level of attention, with updates including a new shower, tile work, vanity, hardware, and lighting, enhancing both its utility and design.

Reconfiguration of the laundry area and the addition of built-in storage units in the closet space significantly improved the apartment’s efficiency and storage capabilities. Exterior updates were not overlooked, with the installation of a new front door and a more soundproof ceiling to ensure a comfortable and quiet living environment. Throughout the renovation, strict adherence to safety regulations was maintained, ensuring the space was not only beautiful but also safe for future occupants.

This renovation project not only transformed a once non-compliant space into a legal, functional, and aesthetically pleasing apartment but also represented a smart investment in the property’s future, showcasing the potential of thoughtful design and careful planning in maximizing both space and value.

after the renovation