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Do Finished Basements Count As Square Footage All Locations : Nationwide Real Estate Advice

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Showing results for Do Finished Basements Count As Square Footage [Clear search]
Tue Oct 12, 2010
Ken Dixon answered:
Good question. I'm assuming the square footage source is coming from the builder in this scenario. Have the builder show you the plans. The building and planning department for the city in which the home resides will also have a copy of the plans. It wouldn't make sense for a builder to exaggerate square footage to you as an appraiser will have to come out and measure the home (assuming your securing financing to purchase the home.) If there is a discrepancy between what the builder is stating and what the appraiser determines then you may have leverage to reduce your asking price based on the new information. ... more
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Tue Sep 21, 2010
Greer Swiston answered:
It depends. Not all square footage include the basement. Not all advertisements will calculate square footage the same way.

You are wise to question the calculation. It's often best to do it yourself. It is the only way to make sure you are comparing apples to apples. Just take the price of the whole property and divide by the square footage of livable space. You may or may not want to include a finished basement. Does a finishable basement count for you? What about a finished basement that doesn't have a walk-out door (i.e. it's a bulkhead, not ground level) These are all variations ... as is the dimiensions of the lot (if it is a single family). ... more
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Thu Mar 28, 2013
Jeffrey Carter answered:
Hello Maryanne,

Finished basements can be counted in the gross living area. The tricky part is finding out whether or not the listing agent has included this info with the total living area. Sometimes they disclose this space in another section of the MLS.

Hope this helps!

Jeffrey H. Carter, ABR
978 717 9015
... more
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Sat Mar 23, 2013
Elizabeth Herbert answered:
Yes, unless it's a walk-out basement.
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Sun Aug 21, 2011
Ruth and Perry Mistry answered:
Hi Barbara:

There are 2 measurements, one using the outside of the house wall dimensions, which the county has on file. You want to call the County or City records and get the Square Footage, file by the builder or previous owners if they did any legal additions.

The other is living space, which is the inside space.

Best regards
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Wed Dec 8, 2010
Donald Hansen answered:
Hello again. SF totals vary from agent to agent. I would not trust what is on the listing unless you see floor plans that have the square footage printed with them. Appraisers generally do not count finished basements in the total square footage but will make exceptions for certain walkout basements.
Towns also will not count finished basements the same as above grade square footage whent they are coming up with a building assessment for taxes.
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Sat Apr 23, 2011
Mark McRae answered:
Yes...finished / heated square footage in basements are considered part of the total square footage when listing a home in the Stanly NC MLS. We do break out the the basement hsf from the above grade hsf in the details sections of the listing.
Mark McRae, Broker / Owner
RE/MAX Properties at Lake Tillery, NC
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Thu Jan 7, 2010
Michael Hammond answered:
Opinion only here, but unless your home is only 1200-1500 square feet, that second deduct seems high to me. Hank, where are you?
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Thu Mar 28, 2013
Tim Klein answered:
It's the asking price divided by the livable square feet above ground. Though some Realtors code the space in error, the usual reason for the differences are due to walkout lower levels and tri-levels though there aren't many of either in Berkeley. Let me know if I can help.

Tim Klein
Metro Brokers - The Realty Werks
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Mon Jun 23, 2014
Patrick Thies answered:
Calculating the square footage of a home is not an exact science. Usually the tax assessors office with have the square footage but many times it is not accurate do to additions and floor plan changes. Some will take the room sizes and factor in a formula to come up with square footage. Some will measure from the outside walls to get square footage. This method will include hallways and staircases. More detailed methods will remove the non living spaces Square footage is usually the livable space that is heated by conventional methods, finished space and above ground living. Basements usually don't factor in to the square footage.

To get a ball park idea, measure all the rooms and multiply each each room length x width to get the square footage of each room. Add all the room sizes together then multiply by 1.3. This will factor in the spaces such as halls and bathrooms. The result will give you the approximate square footage.
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Wed Oct 7, 2009
Catherine McGinley answered:
The Price per square foot is ONLY related to the liveable area of the home. That means garage size and lot size are not part of the equation. If you need additional help, feel free to email me directly at ... more
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Tue Apr 27, 2010
Ed Alvord, Realtor answered:
Usually, here in Oklahoma there are not many basements. I was born and raised in PA so I am very familiar with basements on the other hand..since Real Estate is a "local" environment, you should check with a Realtor in the SD area to be sure. I remember in PA, if it was not a "finished" basement, it wasn't counted as living space. How ever the local rules in SD, would be worth checking out..good luck. Need help selling your current home? See website link for details and tips. ... more
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Tue Jul 26, 2016
Abe Mills answered:
Bedroom: Any room with a closet. (Typically)

Good Luck!
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Sun Aug 9, 2009
Wendy Taylor, CRS, GRI answered:

Unfortunately, No, an unfinished basement does not count.

Good luck!
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Wed May 25, 2011
Greg Anderson answered:
Realtors have the option to put the square footage in or not. Often time they don't put it in because they don't take the time to look it up. I'm including a link for Lake County properties that you can use to look up the square footage yourself. Good luck! If you need help, please let me know. ... more
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Tue Jul 14, 2009
Annmarie Howley answered:

First you can go to the township and ask them to update their records. You can also have a Realtor do a Comparative Market Analysis to challange the appraisal. However, keep in mind that because the addition cost you 180,000 does not mean that your home is now worth 180,000 more. Also,a bedroom should not have a walk out to the yard to be considered a bedroom. I hope this helps you. Good luck.

Annmarie Howley
Coldwell Banker Flanagan Realty
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Tue Jul 7, 2009
Debra (Debbie) Rose answered:
Hi MissLivvy
The square footage includes all the finished living spaces and rooms - yes.. to... closets, hallways, bathrooms, laundry rooms - no... to garages or unfinished basements or attics (some measurements may include basements if they are finished and walkout), but usually the sq. footage for the basement will be listed separately if it is finished space. For the most part, the square footage will include the main living space.

Good luck!
Debbie Rose
Prudentialn NJ Properties
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Thu Jun 18, 2009
Chris Lyon answered:

Generaly LIving Area is considerd what is under air conditioning. This does not include the garage lanai or screened enclosure. I fyou want to look up the property informatiion you can Google Lee County Property Appraiser and search by property address. If you need a mortage or a quote for home owners insurance please feel free to contact me.

Christopher Lyon
We Insure
C&L Funding, Inc
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Thu Feb 26, 2009
Rick Meyer answered:
Hi Ayelet,
In my state of NJ, Basements are not included in the square footage of a home.
A knowledgeable REALTOR in your state could have the answer for you, but the only surefire way to know is to have an Appraisal done buy a Licensed Appraiser.
Listing the incorrect square footage on a home could make you liable for a law suit.
Best of luck to you,
... more
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Wed Dec 3, 2008
Scott Godzyk answered:
When appraising a property, you use the sqwuar footage above grade to calculate the average price per Sf. If you have a raised ranch or split entry where there are full windows and doors above grade that would count. hope this helps ... more
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