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Old 12-30-2009, 09:14 PM   #1
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Question on basement wall/foundation height


We are currently building a home and upgraded our basement walls from 7' 6" to 7' 10". We were doing one of our walk-throughs yesterday with our construction manager and noticed that the basement ceiling seemed awfully low. My husband is 6'1" and his head only cleared the furnace duct work by about 3 inches. We went back today and measured from the top of the concrete basement wall to the floor and it was 7' 5.5". Does this sound correct? Our contract and CADS clearly state "7 ft 10 in basement walls" so our assumption would be the basement walls should be 7ft 10in, but they are off by 4 to 5 inches. Are we misunderstanding something, or do we have an issue here? Thanks!

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Old 12-30-2009, 09:37 PM   #2
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Question on basement wall/foundation height


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We are currently building a home and upgraded our basement walls from 7' 6" to 7' 10". We were doing one of our walk-throughs yesterday with our construction manager and noticed that the basement ceiling seemed awfully low. My husband is 6'1" and his head only cleared the furnace duct work by about 3 inches. We went back today and measured from the top of the concrete basement wall to the floor and it was 7' 5.5". Does this sound correct? Our contract and CADS clearly state "7 ft 10 in basement walls" so our assumption would be the basement walls should be 7ft 10in, but they are off by 4 to 5 inches. Are we misunderstanding something, or do we have an issue here? Thanks!
7'10" concrete walls subtract the thickness of the 4" floor =7'6"
Walls around here are poured on the footing and the height is measured from the footing to top of wall, when you pour a floor you lose the thickness of the floor. This could be the issue.

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Old 12-30-2009, 10:55 PM   #3
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Question on basement wall/foundation height


Yeah, with most poured walls, they finish out at about 7'10". But as SDC says, the slab sits on the footing, and is probably 4-4 1/2" inches thick if you are reading 7 five and a half.....
That is how slabs are poured 100% of the time. In order to get that clearance, you needed to have your walls spec'd at 8'2" or more, which would require more than just standard 8 foot forms....Bummer....Always better to go higher in the basement when you can...I'm afraid you will have to learn to live with it...
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Old 12-31-2009, 08:15 AM   #4
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Question on basement wall/foundation height


Is the 4 or 5 inch difference something that could vary by builder? My brother-in-law just built a few months ago and they paid for 9 ft and when you measure from the floor to the top of the concrete it is 9 ft.

In all, the plan for the basement was a playroom for the kids, a small bedroom for grandma when she visits twice a year and a full bath. I guess my biggest concern at this point is the bathroom. The builder approved us moving the bathroom to a different location in the basement, and it turns out it is directly under the furnace duct/vents. And like I said before, there is only a few inches clearance for a taller person as it is, before we even finish. So how on earth are we supposed to put in a vent fan on the ceiling, or a shower, or even the shower head, or to even put in a doorway to this bathroom without it looking terrible? The lower ceiling for a play/game room for the kids, I can deal with, but the bathroom is a big issue to me (which our builder said would be fine to put there)! Thanks for your comments!
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Old 12-31-2009, 09:26 AM   #5
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Question on basement wall/foundation height


This all depends upon how the plans were drawn up

7' 10" walls poured is that height, then floor is poured

7' 10" finished interior height is totally different

This can & will differ depending upon who draws up the plans & who reads them
Myself I would never go with less then 8' finished height in a basement
Lower ceilings really make an area seem small
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Old 12-31-2009, 12:37 PM   #6
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Question on basement wall/foundation height


Look at your CADS for the "elevation- cut view" for the total height measurement in the basement. It will show either including the slab or not, as mentioned.
Be safe, Gary
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Old 07-15-2012, 10:15 PM   #7
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Question on basement wall/foundation height


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Originally Posted by iub98 View Post
We are currently building a home and upgraded our basement walls from 7' 6" to 7' 10". We were doing one of our walk-throughs yesterday with our construction manager and noticed that the basement ceiling seemed awfully low. My husband is 6'1" and his head only cleared the furnace duct work by about 3 inches. We went back today and measured from the top of the concrete basement wall to the floor and it was 7' 5.5". Does this sound correct? Our contract and CADS clearly state "7 ft 10 in basement walls" so our assumption would be the basement walls should be 7ft 10in, but they are off by 4 to 5 inches. Are we misunderstanding something, or do we have an issue here? Thanks!
Dear IUB98

I am in the same position as you were in 2009. My basement height is less than what is agreed. I have measured with tape and it is only 8' instead of 9'. My building is still in construction stage(dry walling now).

Just wanted to know how did you handle the situation with the builder

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