Do you want your basement to look like a dungeon, or do you want it to be a comfortable space that becomes part of your home? It’s a matter of choosing the right basement ceiling.

If you’re looking for a cheap basement ceiling idea, you’ve come to the right place. Suppose you have a basement that’s just not working for you. It’s dark and dank down there, and you don’t feel it’s worth the effort to keep it clean. 

But then you think about how much money you’re spending on rent and how this unused space wastes much space in your house. You want your basement to be an extra bedroom or playroom—but right now, it feels more like a dungeon. So what should you do? Well, we’ve got some ideas!

Table of Contents

    1. Drywall Ceiling
    2. Tile Ceiling
    3. Painted Wooden Plank Ceiling
    4. Painted Pipes or Beams
    5. Painted Rafters
    6. Stretch Ceiling
    7. Corrugated Metal Ceiling
    8. Beadboard Ceiling
    9. PVC Tile Ceiling
    10. Wood Paneling

1. Drywall Ceiling

Drywall ceiling

Image: Farm Food Family

Drywall ceiling is used as a term to describe a low ceiling that’s framed with wooden struts and covered in plastering. Just like the floor, it offers a clean and simple look. Drywall ceilings are very handy for rooms with low ceiling heights where you want to achieve the industrial feel. The critical advantage of drywall ceilings is their ease of installation.

  • Check out these drywall ceiling tips:
    Use metal furring strips to straighten up the edges of ceiling drywall.
  • Make your ceilings look modern and stylish.
  • When hanging your drywall, job site safety is very important. Always wear gloves and a dust mask, add an air purifier for rooms to reduce dust.

2. Tile Ceiling

Tile ceiling

Image: Pinterest

You can cover the basement in lighter materials by installing a tile ceiling. When the tiles are installed in the aluminum grid, they improve the acoustics and provide a little insulation.

Because the tiles are simple to swap out if any of them become damaged or if you decide you want to go in a different design direction, this particular choice is a sensible one.

Check out these tile ceiling tips now:

  • Research different tile ceilings.
  • Figure out your budget and how much you can spend.
  • You can DIY or have professionals do it for you.

3. Painted Wooden Plank Ceiling

Painted wooden plank ceiling

Image: Farm food family

You may have noticed that in many homes, the ceilings are made of wood. This wood, usually planks, are made of wood like oak, maple, and pine. Wood has different grains, so you can have a lot of options when choosing your finish. But one extraordinary finishing detail you can use on the basement ceiling is painting the ceiling with wooden planks.

Check out this painted wooden plank ceiling ideas:

  • Use a similar design to make an excellent dining room table.
  • Painted wood can be a great alternative to standard woodworking.
  • Use texture to give your room character.
  • Add a unique touch by painting it yourself.

4. Painted Pipes or Beams

Painted pipes or Beams

Image: Pinterest

Since the basement is connected to the rest of the house by beams, if you want to turn it into a bedroom, entertainment room, or personal office, you’ll have to get creative and think outside the box.

Painting the beams or pipes is the most cost-effective method of accomplishing this. The area will be made to appear more modern and industrial by using neutral hues and bright accents.

You can get a head start on your project by following these guidelines:

  • Use the pipes to hang things from so you have more shelf space in your living/bedroom.
  • Don’t go cheap with faux beams.
  • Install pipes or beams between your roof beams.
  • Paint it white or light colors.

5. Painted Rafters

Painted rafters

Image: Farm food family

In the basement, installing rafters in the ceiling provides additional storage space for those who need it. Rafts are a great place to store valuables that must be kept safe. The aesthetic of the basement can be transformed entirely by simply painting the rafters to make them more visually appealing.

As with the painted wood ceiling, any design can be applied. The traditional basement ceiling cover is more expensive. Thus this option is a better value.

Check out painted rafters ceilings tips:

  • Use bright colors and interest-grabbing designs.
  • Get a professional contractor to install it if unsure.
  • Install a ceiling fan and light fixture.

6. Stretch Ceiling

Stretch ceiling

Image: Farm food family

This is the type of basement ceiling you want if you want a visually pleasing one without having to move a lot of furniture or do a lot of messy work, and you can do it quickly because it is simple to install. Thanks to this type of foundation, the basement will not be overly moist or humid. There is, however, a downside: it is more expensive than most other alternatives.

Learn from these ideas for a stretch ceiling look:

  • Use a service like ‘stretch ceiling’ to be more efficient.
  • Get creative to increase your room height even with your existing low ceiling.
  • Decide on a start date to begin stretching your ceiling.

7. Corrugated Metal Ceiling

Corrugated metal ceiling

Image: Pinterest

Corrugated metal can cover the beams and pipes that stick out of the basement ceiling. Corrugated metal not only does this but also helps reduce the noise that travels through the basement ceiling. You can also put it between beams to make them look more attractive. It is also easy to install, not too expensive, and gives your basement an industrial look.

Check out some ideas here:

  • Make sure you choose the right supplies for your project and know what they are.
  • Vest in samples before purchasing more material.
  • Add decorative flashes and design details.

8. Beadboard Ceiling

Beadboard ceiling

Image: Pinterest

Beadboard is usually used to make walls, especially modern natural dividers. But if your basement ceiling is uneven, you can fix it with a beadboard. Not only does it hide the rough ceiling, but it also hides other structural flaws. It is also easy to set up and doesn’t cost too much. Putting in lightwork could also make it look better.

A guide to beadboard ceiling ideas:

  • Replace your popcorn texture with beadboard.
  • Use black, white, and wood tones to create a cool look.
  • Make sure you have your interior design hat on when considering adding beadboard to a space!

9. PVC Tile Ceiling

PVC tile ceiling

Image: Pinterest

People have different opinions about PVC ceiling tiles. One good thing about PVC is that it is usually resistant to moisture, making the basement less damp. But the bad things are more prominent. For one thing, PVC is made of plastic, which means it heats the ceiling more. Because of this, you can’t put too many lights up there. Other than that, PVC has chemicals that are known to be dangerous.

Check out these ideas for your home:

  • Get a contractor to install the ceiling for you in just a day, or learn how to do it yourself.
  • Find out what styles are trending.
  • Use light fixtures on the top and underneath to create the illusion of a floating ceiling.

10. Wood Paneling

Farm food family

Image: Pinterest

This is easy to set up if your basement already has support beams. It will also cost you less because all you have to do is get the wood planks ready, measure them to fit the basement ceiling, and put them up one by one. This is easy to do and looks great in a simple, rustic basement. Wood paneling is also a good choice if you want to turn your basement into your office. Aside from this, the wood panels are beautiful because they look natural.

Ideas for using wood panels on walls to maximize space:

  • Adding wood paneling to the ceiling is a great way to make your room look like an upscale
  • bar or restaurant
  • You can find wood paneling online or in most home improvement stores.
  • Make it pop with neutral paint.
  • Get natural lighting from large windows.


While the most common basement ceiling ideas are painted and drop-down lighting, there is a more profound list of options for those with more time, creativity, and design experience. We’ve assembled a collection of DIY basement ceiling ideas that require no expert knowledge and little money to achieve. For more of these ideas, read more on Guy About Home!

In addition, reading the articles mentioned below may provide you with important information that you may put to good use.

Hi there! I’m Guy, the guy behind Guy About Home (that’s a lot of guy’s). I’m just your average guy (ok, I’ll stop) living in the USA who is really interested in making and doing.