What is the Best Heating Option for a Finished Basement?

Many homeowners choose to finish their basement so they can have extra living space for their family. However, if you live in an area of the country that experiences cold weather, you are going to need to heat this finished space. With basements being underground, they are naturally cool. Add in winter with its cold temperatures, and this extra living space can become uncomfortable to spend time in.

To use this finished space year-round, you have several different heating options to choose from.

Electric heaters

These heating systems make use of coils that are heated with electrical power. Fans in the units distribute the warmed air off the coils and into the surrounding area.

Space heaters

Powered with electricity are great for warming small spaces. They are also inexpensive compared to many alternatives. Space heaters are often portable and can be moved from one spot to another with ease.


If your basement has an existing chimney that was kept usable after your finishing project, this could be the most cost-effective way to warm your new space. If you choose to add a natural gas or wood-burning fireplace to your basement, you will need to keep up with routine maintenance to keep the chimney clean and prevent carbon monoxide buildup.

Baseboard heaters

A baseboard heater is powered by electricity and can be installed along the bottom of your basement walls. These heaters do not require special ductwork. A downside to this option is that they can be dangerous if you have young children or pets who may accidentally touch their hot surfaces.

Radiant heat

Radiant flooring is a great option if you’re planning to finish a basement and haven’t completed the job yet! Special pipes can be installed beneath your floor to distribute warm water or heated air underneath tiles, carpet, etc. This option can be expensive, especially if you’ve already finished your basement.

Wood-burning stoves

If you have a usable and unsealed chimney in your finished basement, this could be ideal. Many homeowners like the smell of burning wood, and the fact that they can stay warm and cozy during the winter, even if they lose electricity.

Enjoy your finished basement and be comfortable all season long with one of the heating systems above.