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Recently closed on a split-level. The basement was partially finished, with a closed off utility room and a hodge-podge closet (enclosed area in one corner of the basement with a door, separated from the rest of the basement).

In planning out the major milestones of the project, should I rebuild the closet or insulate the exterior walls first?

I have the rest of the project well lined up. Insulate the walls, put up a lattice structure, call an electrician to wire more outlets, put up drywall, tape and paint.

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    Make sure you do any electrical and plumbing work before insulating, especially if you've got bare concrete walls and are looking to fir them out with lumber and put drywall over them. Much cheaper to have that done in the rough than once drywall is up. – FreeMan Nov 28 '18 at 18:22
  • I am guessing the basement is dry since there is carpet but would want to make sure prior to putting up insulation. – Ed Beal Nov 28 '18 at 18:43
  • @EdBeal maybe. There's a section of carpet in one exterior corner, furthest away from the utilities. – Drunk Cynic Nov 28 '18 at 23:37
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Insulate 5th.

First is framing, second is HVAC (most difficult to adjust around other features/elements), third is plumbing, fourth is electrical and data, fifth is insulation, then wallboard and paint.

If cabinets are involved, I’d install them next.

I always install the floor coverings last...well, “touch up painting” is very last.

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Insulate first. It's easier now than later.

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Lee Sam offers good advice, but to answer the question as it was asked... You need to insulate (and apply vapor barrier, if appropriate) behind where the closet wall will intersect the energy walls. This isn't usually a problem even after the closet is built, but analyze whether you'll completely obstruct access to any cavity by building the closet. Deal with such areas first.

Otherwise it's mostly a matter of preference and jobsite conditions.

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