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Install a Bar in Your Home

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A fully equipped bar is often a nice bonus when shopping for homes, whether it's a bar cart in your dining room or a full on dedicated area of your finished basement or backyard. If you're looking for a way to install a bar in your home, read on for some helpful tips on installing a wet bar in your home.

Choose a location

There are plenty of places in your home to install a bar. Your finished basement for instance can become your own personal event space. Or maybe you're more interested in building your own dine-in movie theater? Either way, if you have a finished basement, why not take advantage of it.

Ultimately, you're looking for a place in your home that has enough room to build a standing bar, or at the very least be able to accommodate a cart or new piece of furniture.

Other options:
  • Backyard deck
  • Sunroom
  • Dining room
  • Living room

Consider the size

When planning on building anything in your home, extensive planning and preparation is required. You can't just start knocking down walls and pulling up floorboards on a whim. A wet bar doesn't have to be an extensive project, but if you're planning on installing a built-in permanent fixture in your home, you're going to need your tape measure. Remember, measure twice and cut once!

Here are some standard measurements for bars:
  • Height: 42 inches
  • Bar top: 16 to 20 inches
  • Overhang: at least 8 inches (this allows for enough knee room when sitting at the bar)


Depending on what you would like to install in addition to your bar --a sink, for example-- you also could include a lower counter for cutting garnishes, or storing bottles. However, it's not a necessity.

Bar molding on the other hand not only makes your at-home bar look finished, but it provides a nice armrest and also helps prevent drips and spills from ending up on the floor.


You shouldn't forget about storage. If you have an extensive whisky collection that you not only want to enjoy, but you want to display, consider an open shelving plan for your back bar. If you want a less cluttered look, then install shelving under your bar top. Remember to keep weight restraints in mind.


If you want to recreate your favorite dive bar then by all means, go for it... the more neon signs the better! If you're looking for something a bit more understated and energy efficient, try some LED light fixtures. Get yourself a few LED light strips and install them under your bar ledge to give the entire bar a nice glow.

Alternatives to building

If you don't have the budget for an entire building project there are other options. For example, a decorative cart can not only be decoration but it can be repurposed as an impromptu wet bar. If you want something a bit more substantial, consider buying a shelving unit from everyone's favorite Swedish furniture store.

The idea of having a bar in your home is all well and good, but if you don't want to have everyone clamoring to come over, then maybe just a simple setup for parties of a table with some cups and a few bottles of your favorite spirits will be just what you're looking for.

Ana M. Ferrer  Posted by Ana M. Ferrer on March 31, 2015

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