22 Aug 2013

WALKOUT BASEMENT?

The excavator is coming tomorrow to dig the whole perimeter of our house for the waterproofing.  I think we're going to have the ugliest property on the street for awhile.  The back of the house already looks pretty bad and it's  going to get even worse!  Once this water proofing is done we can get moving on with the basement reno which I am really excited about.  

One of our goals for the basement is to get more natural light down there.  We only have four small windows, of which three face north, down there.  You can see the windows in this shot of the back of the house after the deck was dismantled.  For reference, the upper level large window on the left is our dining room, the shorter window in the middle is our kitchen and the door goes to the landing with our mini mudroom and stairs to the basement.

We have been thinking of ways to make the windows bigger, but the latest idea has been to make some kind of a walk out/walk up basement.  My first idea was to build a small staircase extension off the dining room to make a walkout from the dining room and a walk up from the basement.
Something like this:
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I really liked this idea because it would have connected both the basement and dining room with our back yard.  However, in the end we have decided against it because we are thinking of adding onto our house behind the garage.  Building the staircase extension would have meant building an extension on top of an extension.

The latest idea is to create a walk out/walk up under the dining room and part of the kitchen.  Here's my crude photoshop mock up of what we're hoping to do.  Our house is built up on a bit of a mound so we will have to get concrete work done for retaining walls and it will have to walk up a little to get to the yard.  The idea is to have a patio outside of the walkout and then the steps up to the yard.  Can you sort of see it here?

The September issue of Canadian House and Home has this fabulous walk up basement (they also have it on their online video this week).  It has a huge window that has the modern look to it that we love.  We are hoping to change all our windows on the house to something a little cleaner with less/no mullions and change them to a dark grey/black similar to our screen door.  It also has a nice patio space with a bench and planter poured from concrete.

Here's another idea with the floor-to-ceiling window and a concrete patio.  I don't think we'll have a kitchen in our basement though. :)
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A couple more images of walk up basements:
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I think the walkout will make the basement much more liveable and much less like a dungeon/cave.  I am really excited about the possibilities that a walk out will create:  Access to the laundry from the back yard, a mudroom, more comfortable family room/playroom, etc.  Now I'm just hoping our idea will get the okay and we can actually go ahead with the plan!

*sharing this post herebetweennapsontheporch

15 comments:

  1. Beautiful inspiration pictures. I think my favourite is the one with the Canadian house and home. I think it suits your style to a T. Modern, clean lines, Scandinavian.

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    1. I think the house and home one is my favourite too!

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  2. fingers crossed--it sounds amazing! Having a finished basement it, oddly, a lifelong dream of mine. I'm not sure we'll ever get there here, though....there are a lot of other things that are higher up on the priority list, and we don't really need the space (although a separate kid/tween/teen hang out area might be very nice going forward)

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    1. Our last house had a finished basement that we didn't use since the house was so big. I think this basement will really add a lot of liveable space to our current tiny house especially if we can swing the walk out. Fingers and toes crossed! :)

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  3. Oh that is going to be so beautiful - I always wanted to do that in our last place and we never got around to it!
    XXX

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    1. I'm really excited about the idea! I think it will add so much light to the basement and make it so much nicer to be down there.

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  4. A walkout basement would be amazing! I hope the plans workout for you!

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    1. Thanks Kathryn. I really hope it works out!

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  5. I love all of your ideas! my parents' have a full walk out basement and is sooo much better than a traditional kind. From your current home pics it appears that there's a good slope already in the backyard - will this mean that the into-basement slope (the last pic) will be more shallow?

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    1. A full walk out basement is so great - almost like another main floor to a house! Yes, I think we will end up only having a few steps up to the yard. Maybe like the height of the built-in bench in the house and home photos.

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  6. Hi, I'm your newest follower!! Love your style soo much! Great job, what a gorgeous house!!

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    1. Thanks so much! So glad to have you follow along! :)

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  7. i loved the h&h one when i saw it in the magazine too!
    and you know what i think? it would be a fantastic little private area for you to enjoy during sauna breaks!

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    1. Oh, Tech Guy will like that idea! It would be much better than walking up the stairs.

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  8. As we are planning our home build, a walk-out basement is definitely in the plans. I love that it makes it more of a living space and less of an add-on. These inspiration images are just lovely! Can't wait to see more!

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