How to Extend a Basement
As more and more people opt to create a basement extension, the question as to how to create a basement, convert a basement, or extend a basement is ever more relevant. There are a range of issues that need to be understood, and these include those of a structural and technical nature, design and architectural issues, planning and building control legislation, party wall matters, how to find a suitably experienced contractor at a competitive price, what contract to use, and how to pay the contractor. There are many more points to consider, but an understanding of the above will form a firm foundation for a successful basement extension.
How to get Planning Permission for a Basement Extension
Obtaining planning permission for basement conversions depends upon a series of activities and criteria that has to be met. Your architect will develop a design for a basement extension that complies with planning criteria. The proposed scheme will have to be drawn and presented in a prescribed way and added to the drawing set will be a series of technical studies, some of which will be carried out by the architect and others by other consultants, such as a Structural Engineer who will produce a Construction Methodology Statement, or a Services Engineer who will produce an Eco-homes assessment where this is required.
How to get Light into a Basement
When you are considering how to get daylight into a basement the best route is to explore a range of natural light sources of diverse type, size, and location. A light filled basement extension will typically have a mix of rear garden lightwell, street side lightwell and possibly a mid section lightwell. Stairwells and voids and structural glass floor panels will also provide the diversity and range of sources of natural light that successful basement extensions require.
How to Make a Basement Watertight
As a technical issue, the creation of a watertight basement is clearly vitally important. There are a wide variety of basement tanking products available and at Shape Architecture we are well versed in the use of several of the market leaders from companies such as RIW or Delta Membranes. We have good working relations with the technical staff of these companies and develop our details for each project with their input.
Basement Design Ideas
At Shape Architecture, as basement design is one of our areas of speciality we have an extensive back catalogue of basement design ideas. Our designs are always communicated in 3D and are very easy for Clients to understand and comment upon. The wide range of types of basement extension that we have undertaken is particularly useful when discussing the design issues with clients. in this respect we can illustrate single storey basements, double storey basements, those in conservation areas, mews basements, basements below gardens and many more.
Basement Design Guide
Shape Architecture has produced a number of basement design guides and also brochures of completed and on-going basement conversions in London. These are available on our website and as a useful resource for all our clients who commission us to design a basement conversion.