Many Georgian, Victorian and even Edwardian houses in London come with a cellar. These subterranean rooms were generally used as coal storage and in grander homes – a cellar or basement would have included a scullery, larder and other service rooms.
Now, with coal fires mostly banned in London and with no need for such rooms as a scullery, most cellars are used for storage or are ignored, meaning they are ripe for development for any homeowner that may want to add extra living space.
It is likely that you will need to dig down a little to create enough height, damp proof the space and secure any exterior walls, including party walls. However, not every conversion will require this; if you share a wall (or walls) with your neighbours, a party wall agreement will have to be drawn up.
There are many ways to use an existing cellar space to help enhance your home. Here are some ideas:
Turning space in the cellar into a playroom is a popular way of improving your home. Not only does it mean you can shut the door on all the toys; your kids can make as much noise as they want without disturbing the rest of the house too much.
Teens need their own space, so why not turn your unused cellar space into a den for your teen(s) to retreat to. Let their creativity run wild when it comes to decoration; after all it’s their room and it will help to give them a sense of ownership. You could also use big cushions and bean bags to make it as social and comfortable as possible.
Love movies? Then make your own home cinema in your wasted cellar space. Subterranean rooms are ideal for home movie theatres as they let in little light and it leaves you a blank canvas to get the sound just how you want it. Don’t forget to include a big comfortable sofa to relax on.
Extra bathroom and spare bedroom
Having a spare bedroom for guests is always useful. As long as there is a window in the basement, it is possible to use the room as a bedroom, and while you’re there you may as well add an extra bathroom. According to This is Money, an extra bathroom can add £2,500-£6,000 to the value of your home, while an extra bedroom may increase your property price by up to 10%.
If you are looking for a space to dedicate to your body and mind, why not change your cellar into a gym or yoga room? If you have your heart set on a gym, you may need the following:
- A mirror
- Plenty of light; either from electricity or from natural light
- The right equipment for your needs
- Good flooring; either wood, laminate or rubber
For a yoga room, make sure you de-clutter, choose calming colours and have lighting you can change according to your mood.
Last year we ran a survey asking 1,000 UK residents if they could add another room to their home, what it would be. 27% of respondents stated that they wanted a man cave, and what could be more cave-like than a converted cellar? So, grab a drink, put your feet up and enjoy a little space of your own.
Have a cellar you want to convert? Contact Simply Basement today for a free site survey and we may be able to help you enhance your home with a small cellar conversion.