Tips on finishing, insulating basement floors

Q. We plan to finish our family room in the basement. What is the best type of flooring to use there? There has never been any water issue. Thanks for your help.

A. The best flooring is one that you will enjoy and will last. I prefer ceramic, slate tile, or vinyl instead of carpet; you may never have had a water issue, but that doesn’t mean you won’t. If you do, you’ll have to replace the carpet or have it professionally cleaned, sanitized, and deodorized. If you do want carpet in your basement, then get it. Be sure to install a vapor barrier before putting down a wood subfloor or carpet pad.

Q. I read your article on mold-free basements with interest (“Tips for a finished basement that’s mold-free,” Dec. 18). I own a log home in northwestern Maine with a walkout basement. The home is on sloping ground on the shore of a large lake, with the side away from the waterfront 8 feet below ground and the side facing the water even with the terrain.


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