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Cellar Conversion

(12 Posts)
Amazonmulu Wed 17-Aug-16 13:02:44

I'm looking at buying a house and making the cellar into a big family room. It's very dry and has a good head height. It has a shower room down there with a loo and a sink (so plumbing and power are there). There's also a utility room there with a wm and dryer. There are stairs to it from the kitchen and there is a door (to the outside decking area) which is not full height - think it is about 5 foot (which we plan to replace with patio doors and lower the deck (tbc)).

I think we would need to just tank it, insulate it, run heating to it, put flooring and plasterboard / plastering up, put in a door and adjust the outside level so the door can be full size (and decorate).

How much would this cost? What kind of ball park?

We are months away from moving in and I want to be able to budget for it now so we can do it asap when we move.

Amazonmulu Wed 17-Aug-16 13:05:19

I should add that the neighbours a few doors down have done this. And it looks fab!

Pradaqueen Wed 17-Aug-16 16:10:30

I did this in a Victorian house around 8 years back. It worked really well although it was still a mud floor when we bought it. Firstly if the house is not detached you will need a party wall agreement. You need to engage a reputable builder - preferably a basement specialist. Do not start any work without confirming your buildings insurance plus that of your builder will be valid for basements works - particularly if you have to dig down which you may have to do to comply with building regs. Suggest you line up some builders to get quotes and phone the planning dept to confirm building regs requirements. It is worth doing but is not a quick fix. From memory we paid less than £60k to create a family room hallway and bedroom with ensuite from the existing basement. Good luck and I hope it goes well for you!

Pradaqueen Wed 17-Aug-16 16:11:11

Ps I would add that was finished not a plaster shell.

Amazonmulu Wed 17-Aug-16 20:25:17

Wow! That's a lot more than I expected! Because it's already an accessible dry powered and lit space I assumed it would be less. Is it the tanking that takes the cost up?

Amazonmulu Wed 17-Aug-16 20:25:26

Wow! That's a lot more than I expected! Because it's already an accessible dry powered and lit space I assumed it would be less. Is it the tanking that takes the cost up?

Amazonmulu Wed 17-Aug-16 20:26:39

Wow! That's a lot more than I expected! Because it's already an accessible dry powered and lit space I assumed it would be less. Is it the tanking that takes the cost up?

wowfudge Wed 17-Aug-16 20:41:55

We had a quote for doing this at our old house. It was digging out to give greater head height and putting in steels to support the walls above that was the main cost. We were looking at opening the space into a large room instead of several chambers.

Pradaqueen Wed 17-Aug-16 21:18:40

Hi it was a large space but realistically if you are going to do it, you need to do it properly otherwise you won't sell it. If you are waging war on water (which all basements are unless it's a certain dry cellar) it is no mean feat to stay damp free. With the awful case of that poor family in London earlier this year not being insured and their builder liquidating the firm when their house collapsed it is not work to be undertaken lightly. The chances are, whatever you think is adequate headroom, your local building control will not....

Amazonmulu Thu 18-Aug-16 13:05:55

Thank you Pradaqueen & all.

Is there an issue in making the cellar a proper room even if it does not conform to building regs? I mean it will still be a useful space and if we just call it a cellar when / if we sell?

Pradaqueen Thu 18-Aug-16 19:36:59

Yes. Unless you have proper access for fire escape purposes it is unlikely that building regs will sign off details that make it a 'proper' room such as heating etc. Check with your local building control. I was lucky as my basement actually had windows and a separate front door to the rest of the house.

Amazonmulu Fri 19-Aug-16 09:13:26

Thank you!!

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