In recent years, basement conversions have become an increasing phenomenon. According to Halifax Insurance, applications to renovate basements, soared by 183 per cent; with suggestions that factors such stamp duty increases and the nature of a fast-moving market, have led to the increase in popularity; and it’s easy to see why. Basements can be a great way to increase your properties value and size, especially in expensive, space poor locations such as London. Whether you’re looking to add extra bedrooms, a play room or a cinema to watch your favourite films, a basement can be a great addition to accommodate this.
Previously, these so-called ice berg homes were only reserved for the rich, to add square footage to their already sizable mansions, but today, they are more affordable and common among average suburban families up and down the country. Basements are associated with many benefits, the most obvious being that they can be incredibly cost effective and are a relatively easy way to increase your property’s size and value. When looking at a recent example of a property JBrown sold, a small-scale extension adding two rooms costing around £90,000, saw the property’s value soar by around £150,000; a substantial net value increase of an impressive £60,000. These figures can of course be multiplied for bigger scale conversions. The process can also be relatively quick, especially beneficial for investors. The planning process usually takes around two months, with only around ten per cent of applications being rejected, and the construction phase taking approximately twelve weeks.
Basement conversions are undoubtedly a big undertaking, and if done incorrectly, can have disastrous consequences for both you and your neighbours. Most people will have heard the horror stories associated with basement conversions such as property collapses and neighbours being trapped in their properties due to subsidence. Some London councils have even stopped awarding planning permission to households looking to construct basements. Even if everything does go smoothly, you and your neighbours can expect weeks of noise and disruption. For these reasons, extensive research is essential before making your first move.
Ultimately, providing you conduct substantial research, and are willing to put up with a few weeks of construction, a basement extension is an incredibly effective way to add additional space to your existing square footage and add value to your property. Most extensions add value of around ten to fifteen percent of the property’s value, with this figure estimated to be a higher twenty percent in central London. These figures are appealing to investors and family home owners alike. Basement extensions are also great way to ensure your property reaches its full potential, and if the property is your home, ensure that your property grows with you and your family.
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