Adaptable spaces

Added value and space

A bigger home is a key requirement for many house buyers and basements allow more useable space to be created within the same building footprint. The provision of additional floor space in a home clearly increases the value of a property and the addition of a basement adds space with little or no effect on the garden area. Additionally, basements allow additional space to be created in locations where an extra storey above ground level is not possible or desirable due to planning and site constraints.

Desirable and adaptable spaces

One of the major benefits of basements is allowing the creation of a single large space. This is because a single span is often economical due to the forms of external wall construction used.

The resultant space is typically the single largest area in the house and, due to its location on a different level from the rest of the house, provides the opportunity for uses not always possible to accommodate in more basic dwellings. The space also offers flexibility as non-loadbearing internal walls can be installed to suit a range of layouts and future alterations can be carried out more simply.

Space for working from home

Working from home has become increasingly popular over recent years, enabled by improvements in technology and accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Basements offer the possibility of quiet, private spaces for working from home, with the potential for direct access from the outside, and therefore designated work-based visits or deliveries.

Additionally, the solid nature of basement construction provides excellent conditions for workshop spaces and activities that create noise, require support for heavy equipment or require robust, cleanable surfaces.

Changing uses for basement spaces during the life of a family home:

  • Home office/studio
  • DIY workshop
  • Utility room
  • Hobby room
  • Home gym/sauna
  • Wet room for outdoor gear
  • All-weather play room
  • Band practice/music room
  • Wine cellar
  • Home cinema
  • Guest suite
  • Separate self-contained flat
  • Living room
  • Extra storage

Please refer to Part M (access and facilities for disabled people) of our building regulations guide for further information. All information correct to 2016 amendments.