What is an unfinished basement worth?

Asked by R01, Chicago, IL Tue Jul 12, 2011

We are planning to buy a townhome in Chicago northwest suburbs. We have shortlisted two homes that are in the same community and almost identical to each other, except that one has an unfinished basement with sump pump and battery backup. We don't have a strong preference either way, but would like to buy the home that offers more value for money. So I'm trying to estimate the added value from the presence of an unfinished basement. Both homes are 2-level and about 1,600sqft. The home with basement adds 500-600 sqft of lower-level space (gets little light and is not a walkout). These homes are in the low $200,000's range.

Thanks for your response!

Help the community by answering this question:

+ web reference
Web reference:


Michael Pitt…, Agent, Arlington Heights, IL
Mon Sep 15, 2014
In the Chicago area, most homeowner want and expect a basement. Having said that, not having a basement can be a hindrance in getting a home sold when competing with other homes which have one. Most builders will add anywhere from $20,000 to $40,000 to the price of new construction when adding a basement.
0 votes
Tom Poziwilko, , Arlington Heights, IL
Sun Sep 25, 2011
The tight market has brought us back to some old values. Comparing apples to apples, a house with a basement will be valued higher than one without. There will be a price difference, as well as market demand, between basement verses crawl/slab. I hate to disappoint those sellers who think their crawl space is high demand, but most people prefer a basement.
The value between finished or unfinished depends on how nicely and recently a basement is finished. I’ve seen finished basements wonderfully done, and finished basements that haven’t been changed since 1955. Unfinished basements are not necessairly a negative.
Most basements in the NW suburbs have a sump pump; usually two. One for drain tiles (rain water) and one for lower level plumbing such as a sink.
0 votes
Jim Holder, Agent, Arlington Heights, IL
Thu Sep 1, 2011
A basement adds additional space at a very cost effective price. The space can be used in a multitude of ways depending on one's lifestyle. A good dry basement is generally worth the additional cost and will help in resale. A full unfinished basement is probably worth 10-15% more than a comparable property without a full, unfinished basement.

for further discussion, please feel free to contact me.

Re/Max Suburban
Arlington Heights
Web Reference:  http://www.JimHolder.com
0 votes
Search Advice
Ask our community a question

Email me when…

Learn more