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Old 07-27-2015, 10:30 AM   #1
Astheros
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Digging out basement for living space

Hey everyone. I recently bought a 2 family house and I am considering making the basement into living space. It is currently only about 5'11 ft of space and I want to make it 8ft to have suitable ceiling height. How much does this cost? To dig out. Anyone has experience? I just want to dig it. Level the floor and add a small bathroom and simple tiny kitchen. Maybe framing. I can do the drywall/ceiling stuff.

I have about 15k.
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Old 07-28-2015, 11:28 AM   #2
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You don't have nearly enough to move the foundation of your house down 2+ feet or raise the rest of your house 2+ feet if you're house isn't some special design. To give you an idea of costs: just leveling a slab foundation (not raising or lowering the entire thing, just effectively "shimming it" in place) runs $5k+. You likely need to either raise the entire house OR put in multiple sets of temporary foundation supports, rip up the existing foundation, dig out the foundation, pour a new foundation, and rebuild the entire basement to provide structural stability for the rest of the house. I'd guess you'd be looking at $40k+ for a 1,500 sq ft place on the very low side, pushing $100k on the high side.

Here's an excerpt from a conversation on installing a new basement (which you would pretty much have to do with slightly less digging)

Quote:
A House Mover or Foundation Underpinning specialty company can usually slide your house onto a whole new foundation, or jack it up on steel beams and hold it there while a basement is dug underneath it, without any intermediate piers. The jacking/move cost would probably be on the order of $30-40,000, and a new basement probably about $40-50,000 - rough ballpark, though I have been involved in some 1000-1500SF single story jobs that went for under $70,000 total.
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Old 07-28-2015, 04:26 PM   #3
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Idk if it makes any difference that this Is a city property. Kind of like a townhouse. I have been told it has a commercial/industrial grade steel beam from front to back. I suppose 6ft may be enough for just some living space but even 6" more inches would be ideal.
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Old 07-29-2015, 06:29 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Astheros View Post
Idk if it makes any difference that this Is a city property. Kind of like a townhouse. I have been told it has a commercial/industrial grade steel beam from front to back. I suppose 6ft may be enough for just some living space but even 6" more inches would be ideal.
You're welcome to get estimates from contractors in your area but I'd be shocked to hear any estimates come in anywhere near your budget. Keep in mind, it will end up including building the entire basement (a 5' basement build doesn't fit in an 8' basement and "adding on" to the walls is not the right way to build it out). To just build out the bathroom and kitchenette would generally run $4-6K on the low end, much more to put in a full functioning kitchen.

Regardless if you go an extra 6" or an extra 10', you still need to put in temporary supports, build the new foundation, and install permanent supports after the digging out is done and that's a very expensive proposition unless you own the equipment and could do the work yourself.
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Old 07-29-2015, 08:53 AM   #5
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Ok. I'll take some pics but seems like my idea is out the window. I guess an entertainment room is all I can do.
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