Should I Convert My Property’s Basement?

June, 2017

Every homeowner wants more space. Whether it’s for work, play or just storage, extra space adds value to your home and gives you a bit more flexibility on a day-to-day basis. And one way of achieving that is by converting your basement. But it’s easier said than done. In this post, we explore some of the important things to consider if you’re thinking of converting the basement of your property.

What is a basement conversion?

A basement conversion isn’t to be confused with the construction of a new basement. It’s essentially renovating an unused, neglected basement space. Turning it into one that’s clean, furnished and can be used for whatever you need. Unlike constructing one from scratch, it doesn’t usually require planning permission. That – for one – is a bonus all homeowners will be glad to hear.

So, what are the benefits?

As we touched upon in the intro – there are two main benefits to a basement conversion – namely, space and value. Extra space is a bonus to any homeowner. You can choose to do anything with it. From an extravagant home cinema to a practical home gym or office or even just a convenient storage room.

And, of course, the same applies to anyone who buys the home. The extra space makes your home more valuable. Property experts estimate that a fully converted basement adds up to 20% to the value of your home. One worry, however, is the cost and whether you will earn it back through this added value.

Costing it up

The main task in making your existing basement space habitable is damp-proofing, waterproofing and insulating the walls. You can expect to pay between £720-£1,800 per square metre, according to Real Homes. Unless you require extra services like floor lowering and underpinning, the figure should be towards the lower end of this estimate. So, for an average basement of around 20 square metres, you’re looking at a cost of roughly £20,000.

Remember, this is only an estimate. It’s best to assess your specific situation, find quotes for the work you need and get advice from estate agents on how this will add value to your home.

Complications

Things can become a bit less straightforward, however, if you do need some extra services. Not to mention a bit more expensive. To create sufficient height, some basements require to be dug deeper and underpinned as part of the conversion. This gives the basement a new foundation, which may no longer be covered by the ‘Permitted Development’ of your property. It will need to comply with relevant Building Regulations and should be checked with local authorities. This is also the case for external entrances, windows and light wells.

Reaping the rewards

Home improvements give your property that all important added value when it comes to the sale. And to ensure you get the most out of your home’s sale, you need the right estate agent. Weale & Hitchen are experienced property experts working across Bury, Ramsbottom, Rawtenstall and Holcombe Brook. We can take care of everything from floor plans and photography to viewings and offers. Sound good? Get your free valuation today to get things started.

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