We've a basement (we call it a 'wine cellar.') When we moved in over the summer, there was a layer of water acorss the floor. Not great for storage.
We bought a 99 Argos humidifier and the place became bone dry within about three weeks. Great for storage now, just a bit of a pain going down the cellar steps and emptying the humidifer twice a day.
Know what you mean about the standard of living. Can't beleive the state we let the old place fall into.
Have a good weekend, and good luck for Monday (I find myself in a similar position...)