Basement Conversion 

According to CABE, the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment, the UK builds the smallest new homes in Europe. In large this is because of the high cost of building land and pressure on space. But we could easily add another whole storey to every new home without requiring any more land, or building any higher and impacting on the landscape, if we simply added a basement. 


Basements offer real potential for more efficient use of land and enhanced quality of life without adverse physical or visual consequences.

Sustainable development is the core principle underpinning planning. The efficient use of land is an integral part of sustainable development, as land constitutes a finite resource that must be used to ensure a better quality of life for everyone now and for future generations. 

Tanking and making the cellars dry is very important. Even if you do not intend to carry out a full conversion to your cellar, waterproofing it will still add value to your home, providing a useful storage area and giving future buyers the option of turning it into another room if they wish. 

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The most cost-effective option is a simple utility basement with no windows, ideal for a plant room, workshop, utility room, wine cellar, or for storage, freeing up above-ground space for other uses. With a little investment in electrical and plumbing works, and finishes to the walls and floor, the basement space can be upgraded to make a great games room, home cinema or gym, potentially still without lightwells, providing there is a single habitable room and an enclosed staircase leading directly to an external door, in order to meet Building Regulations. 

Common uses for a full lower ground floor with plenty of lightwells include a family room, kitchen, office, guest bedroom(s) and bathroom(s), in addition to the usual utility functions. With a separate access via an external staircase, a basement could also be used as the office of a home-based business, or a self-contained annexe.