Home Buying in Fayetteville>Question Details

Ike, Home Buyer in Fayetteville, NC

Why do houses have basements and what purposes does basements serve?

Asked by Ike, Fayetteville, NC Sun Sep 13, 2009

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Hello Ike
The possibilities are endless with a basement....well, sort of. It all depends on the type of basement you are referring to. Basements can be solely for storage or they can be quite elaborate living areas. In the Fayetteville NC area a common basement is the walk-out basement. This type of a basement has access to the outside of the home via doorways verses an interior access basement which may only open to the outdoors via an emergency exit door similar to a crawlspace entry in size. Walk-out basements can accommodate bedrooms, kitchens, recreation rooms, etc. The space is heated and cooled and usually has finishes like the main level of the home. Slopping lots are often best suited for walk out basements because it cost about as much to utilize that space as living space as it would to fill it in to build. Now if you are considering a home with a "northern" style basement, you may have exposed plumbing and ducting in this space and you may only use it for storage but it can be converted to more useful space. We don't see those types of basements in our market much but they are quite common up north.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 14, 2009
Hi Ike
Basements serve many purposes. The most obvious use is for storage. The first floor of the home usually isn''t as cold when there is a basement since it isn't built on a slab. Having a basement in my area (here in the Northeast) is a big plus, finished or otherwise. As long as there are no water issues on the property, basements add value here. I have many buyers who won't buy a home without a basement!

Many are finished off with playrooms., rec/game rooms, media rooms or offices and addiitional bedrooms or au pair suites......some have not only full baths, but small kitchenettes to be used for extended families. In many luxury homes, you will see theater rooms, media rooms, exercise rooms and wine cellars. The finishes in basements can range from very simple and rudimentary to quite elaborate.... with wet bars and other high end finishes.

Some of the basements are "walk out", or above ground, which usually adds even more value to the home. Walk out basements are often useful when the home has a pool........as this level can then be used for changing rooms and entertaining space in conjunction with the pool area.

The region you live in may determine the value a basement adds (or doesn't add) to a home.

Best wishes
Debbie Rose
Prudential NJ Properties
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 13, 2009
They exist to just sap your wallet!!!! Really, they are really great when it comes to keeping comfortable during all seasons but basements can also be problems when they are not properly waterproofed. You get more bang for your buck if you have that square footage above ground vs below ground. Good luck with your search
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 13, 2009
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