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Old 03-10-2009, 10:59 AM   #1
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Basement Addition


Hello, this is my first post here. I appreciate any direction that can be offered.

We have a house with a full finished basement underneath. What I would like to do i actually add on to the basement. We were thinking of excavating a 24x16 area behind our house, laying down block and adding to the basement. All of that, I know can be done. My question is what to do above it. I originally wanted to put a full addition or sun room on top, and just an a frame roof. But, I think that project may ultimately be more cost than we can bear.

What other options do I have? Is it possible to have a basement with a porch over top? Or even just a deck? I am an amateur here, so I am just looking for what CAN be done. I live in New Jersey, btw. Thanks for taking a look

HC

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Old 03-10-2009, 11:35 AM   #2
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Basement Addition


For cost I would at least add the "closed-in" addition. This means the framing and roofing. Leave the windows boarded over and even tyvek used for temporary siding. This way you protect the basement without wasting money with a waterproof roof/floor . Now you can start to finish the addition at your leisure.

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Old 03-10-2009, 12:05 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Bob Mariani View Post
For cost I would at least add the "closed-in" addition. This means the framing and roofing. Leave the windows boarded over and even tyvek used for temporary siding. This way you protect the basement without wasting money with a waterproof roof/floor . Now you can start to finish the addition at your leisure.
So, cost wise, a closed in addition would be less than a deck or porch or whatever? I guess that makes sense. But, just out of curiously, what if I wanted a deck? rather than an addition. Is that even possible (with respect to waterproofing)? Thanks for the reply

HC
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Old 03-10-2009, 12:14 PM   #4
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Basement Addition


Welcome! Sounds like an interesting project. I can appreciate watching costs, we just built an addition 24x24, two stories, and the costs multiply quickly. If you know you absolutely cannot afford to build living space above, then really your challenge is going to be creating a roof system that will hold up to weather. From experience, I'd say be careful with this. Unless you really do it right (I would take a look at commercial buildings with flat roofs) you can run into a lot problems. At my Dad's place he enclosed a patio area with essentially a deck above it. Over the years he has tried using tar, shingles, rubber membranes, you name it... and still fights leaky areas.

I think unless you go with option 1) living space above, or 2) a proper flat roof construction, than you ultimately are going to have to get creative with a 'roof' that sits on the ground. I guess just for the sake of brainstorming you could buy engineered trusses for an attic room and set them right on the basement wall. Then you'd end up with some living space above, but it could be used as storage etc. That said; it might also be really REALLY strange looking from the outside!

Good luck, let us know what you decide.
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Old 03-10-2009, 12:23 PM   #5
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Basement Addition


I would guess my only realistic option is to build the living space above it, but not do any electric, plumbing or whatever else might need to be done. And just frame it, roof it and the finish it when I can.

See, I need the basement area as an expanded office space. Its an actual need for the way my business is running right now. The upstairs could completely wait, except that I don't want it looking like junk for an extended period of time. So, I was trying to think of some way to get use out of the space without throwing money away. But, it seems like there is no real option outside of doing the basement and the living space, but leaving the living space as sort of 3 season for the time being...
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Old 03-10-2009, 12:39 PM   #6
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I would guess my only realistic option is to build the living space above it, but not do any electric, plumbing or whatever else might need to be done. And just frame it, roof it and the finish it when I can.
My wife would let that go for about 30 days before she started asking when I was going to finish it!

That really would be the best option, especially from a resale standpoint.
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Old 03-10-2009, 01:36 PM   #7
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Basement Addition


To address if you can add a waterproof deck.. yes you can. You would need to make a slightly pitched floor for the deck. Using something like a snap-deck that interlocks and is watertight. Issue is that the structure needed for this floor and decking and then to remove it latter exceeds what is needed to stick with option A. Now for a porch... you could make the ceiling/floor with steel beams, corrugated sheets and concrete to make an excellent three or four seasons room.
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Old 03-10-2009, 03:41 PM   #8
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If the money is available I would absolutely atleast put on the first floor addition so that it is weather tight. Anything else would look very odd from the outside. Or you would be wasting alot of money in the long run getting the deck water tight and then building the addition in the future.
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Old 03-10-2009, 05:14 PM   #9
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How about you put in the basement and the upstairs but finish only the upstairs for your added office space. Leave the basement unfinished. Then later when funds permit finish the basement and move your office down there. It would look better to leave the basement unfinished than the upstairs and you'll initially spend less than finishing the whole thing at first.

It is possible to put a deck on top of a basement but they seem to be prone to leaks. I'm sure they can be done leak free but you have to find a really good contractor with experience.
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Old 03-10-2009, 06:08 PM   #10
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I plan to start a project this spring, but the permit is only good until September! The city building department insisted that it would be completed by then!
Its important that you would discuss your plans with the municipal authorities, as they may not go along with just a basement extension!
They don't like to get calls from angry neighbors!

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