When you need more space, moving is not always the answer, especially in London.

Moving is expensive and finding a suitable house in such a fast moving market can be more hassle than its worth. So, why move when you can improve with a basement conversion.

More Space

Many parts of London are conservation areas and this means it can be difficult to extend up, to the side or rear. As families grow and children stay in the family home for longer houses need to adapt to the needs of their owners and creating a basement can give space to families who are bursting at the seams. Despite the media hype not all basements are being made into swimming pools and bowling alleys, many are being converted to create extra bedrooms, bathrooms, home offices and playrooms; such extra space can help to keep family harmony.

Cheaper than moving

The cost of moving in the capital has been rising steadily. According to a study compiled by Post Office Money and Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr), the average cost of moving in London in 2014 was £27,946, making it the most expensive place to move house in the UK. This figure, of course, does not take into account the new levels of stamp duty which range from 2 per cent to 12 per cent depending on the cost of the property. In April 2016 an additional 3 per cent surcharge was added on second homes or buy to let properties. The average cost of creating a basement under an existing house sits between £500-£750 per square metre – so for some, it can make more financial sense to improve and not move.

Growing families

Of course, decisions about moving are not just about money. If you have a growing family and need more room, you may not want to move, because you do not wish to take your children out of school or move away from family members or friends. By investing in a basement conversion you can gain extra space and not have to deal with the stress and disruption on moving.

Better use of space

Digging down to create a basement is a more efficient use of space. You won’t lose your garden to add more square footage to your home nor will you obscure views or light as you would if you were to build up. It is possible, in some London boroughs, to dig a basement under the footprint of the house and expand under the garden.

Energy efficient

Building a basement means that wall and floor insulation are improved because the building does not overheat or cool down too fast, meaning that a house with a basement can be up to 10 per cent more thermally efficient than one built entirely above ground. Architect Allan Joyce, who built a complete storey of his house underground, told Homebuilding & Renovating magazine that “The house was designed as a thermal store and with our family of seven all sleeping in the basement we find it very warm,” says Alan. “There is no wind chill and the ground temperature outside is regularly 14°. We have a below-ground courtyard and a lot of natural light coming in through rooflights and on a sunny day in winter the temperature in the basement has been as high as 25 degrees with no heating on.”

If you are looking to improve not move then Simply Basement can help you. Part of the Simply Construction group, we have the expertise to help you achieve the space you desire. From start to finish we will be there with you every step of the way from design, planning to completion. For a free site survey please call us on 0800 917 7571 or contact us here.

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