There are plenty of questions regarding if converting your basement is a good idea or not, so in this blog, Timberwise will explain what the benefits of converting your basement are.
In every house we are always wanting more and more space so it’s understandable that basement conversions are becoming increasingly popular with homeowners.
What is a basement conversion?
A basement conversion is the process of converting an unused basement that is neglected into habitable living space. It can be easily confused with creating a new basement which, unlike a basement conversion, does require planning permission as it is treated as an extension to the property.
Why converting your basement is a good idea?
When it comes to the decision of whether or not you should convert your basement there are many things to consider. The most important point is that you will have extra space. Having extra space makes your house more desirable for first time buyers as well as families that are looking for extra space without having to extend outwards.
Everyone has their own ideas of what they would like to use the extra living space for. This can range from simply having an extra living room to something a bit more luxurious such as a home cinema or maybe even a swimming pool. By increasing your living space in your property can not only enhance the look and feel your house but you can also speed up the chances of selling your home with the bonus of significantly adding to the property value.
Converting your unused basement can also increase the overall value of the property. Estate agents confirm that a basement conversion can add up to 10% to the value of the average house. There is also the extra incentive for converting your basement as it can provide an additional bedroom so, if you wanted to earn some extra cash, then this could be the ideal way about going about it.
It is important to consider all possible financial implications when thinking about converting a basement. Basement conversions are a good idea in areas especially where property values are very high such as in London. However, areas where housing is of a lower value may unbalance the cost of the basement conversion.
What are the planning permissions needed for a basement conversion?
Having a property extension will mean you have to acquire planning permission but with a basement conversion you are only changing the inside of the property so this doesn’t apply. This differs though if you want to add an entrance to the basement or if you want add windows as well.
Do you need to waterproof your basement?
Most unused basements and cellars are cold and damp and are usually inhabitable for residents wanting to occupy them as living space. For the basement to be made habitable there are a number of techniques that can be used to prevent further issues with dampness.
Basements by their very nature are below the water table so there is usually a protective coating on the walls below ground to prevent dampness coming through. Over time this coating may deteriorate allowing water to penetrate through the walls, making the basement susceptible to damp or flooding.
There are waterproofing systems that can be put in place to control the water when it enters the basement and through sump pump units it can then be pumped to a safe drainage point away from the habitable areas. To make sure that the basement is fully waterproofed it is advisable to contact a waterproofing specialist to ensure that the problems of dampness won’t occur again in the future.
Basement conversions then can be a worthwhile investment and significantly boost your property value if you’re looking to sell or rent out.
Written by Robert Owen
I work for a company called Timberwise, which provide specialist property care and preservation services for both domestic and commercial properties. So no matter what the scale of the issue may be, our experts have the knowledge and skills to make your property great again.