Home Buying in 60608>Question Details

Agile Roy, Home Buyer in Chicago, IL

I'm closing on a 2 flat building with a very low basement ceiling. I would like to dig down the basement so I can Duplex the 1st floor to

Asked by Agile Roy, Chicago, IL Wed Jan 23, 2013

basement. Does any one know how much this would cost? The basement is 1196 sq ft. Does anyone know a Contractor and Structural Engineer with experience in Digging down the basement?

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50K with permits and power
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
Great post
Flag Fri Mar 8, 2013
I agree with the other answers. Here is what you need to know.
1. Legal ceiling height in the basement needs to be 7'-6" above the new slab. (finished)
2. You need to know the Zoning limits of your building. (Lot Area vs. Building Area)
3. In order for the NEW basement area to NOT count against you, it must be more than half below grade. (Height from Sidewalk at property line to top of first floor finished vs. height of basement slab to height of first floor finished)
4. The depth of the existing foundation should be BELOW the new slab height.
5. If NOT then you will have to underpin the foundations which will throw the 20K OUT OF THE WINDOW.
6. Any plumbing will need to be lowered and you may end up needing an overhead ejector pump.
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions. I have worked on these types of projects before and as an Architect I can help.
Good Luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
Definitely look for one in your area that knows the lay of the land
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
Easily over $20k. As Ed says, there is a question as to it even being possible, and you should make sure the space will not be considered as above grade floor area that counts against what is allowed on your lot, in case it puts you over the maximum.
Also concerns with water and drainage.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
What is the current ceiling height in the basement (slab to the underside of the joist)? Is the 2-flat brick/stone or frame? What is the construction of the current foundation - does it look like it is made of brick/stone or does it look like concrete?

Structure is your main initial concern; for long term viability your next big concern is waterproofing. I have completed many of these types of projects and I have purchased bank owned homes where the job was done incorrectly and I had to fix bad work.

After you answer the questions above I can give a better idea of what this type of project might cost.

Erik Sachs
RpV Realty and Development
Cell 773/368-5515
Email esachs@rpvinc.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
You should probably find out the cost BEFORE you close.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
This is an expensive thing to do. I can say it will be over 20k. Try calling Joe Andrews 708-516-9816
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
Feel free to contact:

Nick Psyhogios

Honest, Knowledgeable, & Straightforward
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
Digging downward is a very expensive project especially if you are going to dig past the footing of the foundation. This building sounds older and keep in mind these basements were never intended to be lived in. A structural engineer is your best bet as to what will need to done, if it can be done safely at all. Call this engineer: Orendeff Steele at (630) 240-5363.
I have worked with him in the past when buildings I have inspected needed a structural engineer.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
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