How to Excavate a Basement to Open up More Space

30 July 2019
 Categories: , Blog


Are you thinking about expanding your property but are faced with certain logistical difficulties? You may be surrounded by other buildings and have a mature canopy of trees above, so you can neither expand outward or upward. Yet your home is built on some sloping terrain, so you may be able to think about expanding downward if you can install a basement beneath. What do you need to bear in mind as you research this alternative?

Excavation Ahead

Due to the way that your house was originally built, one wall is substantially higher than the other to take into account the natural slope of the terrain. This means that it may be a prime candidate for excavation, and you may be able to install a large room underneath for storage or entertainment purposes.

Factors to Consider

However, this is quite a complex job as you will need to support the existing structure while the work takes place and make sure that the new basement and everything above is as stable as possible going forward.

If one wall of your building is shared with a neighbouring property, then you will also have to consult with that owner and make sure that you get the necessary permission before any work can commence. It is crucial to bring in engineers at every stage of the process, but especially when it comes to underpinning the current structure.

Engineering Complexity

A project like this will need to take place in stages, with underpinning work scheduled as each piece is excavated. This will involve the introduction of a concrete base to support the original foundation which will now be exposed as the soil is removed. The engineers and workers will set up a specific plan of attack and you will need to ensure that you can remove all the excavated material as efficiently as possible to keep up with their schedule.

The Goal

When all of this is complete, your basement will have concrete pillars to underpin the existing building above, metal joists that support the floor in your living space and a ventilation system to ensure that the new space is perfectly livable.

Moving Ahead

To move forward, you will need to bring in a variety of experts in engineering matters, underpinning and excavation, to help you achieve your goal. If they agree with your plans, then you will be able to transform your home and open up a lot more space for you and your family.

For more information on underpinning and other building services, contact a company like Jeffrey Hills and Associates.