Home & Garden

Walk up basement - From builder ?

  • Last Updated:
  • Jul 15th, 2020 1:34 pm
[OP]
Jr. Member
May 29, 2007
111 posts
24 upvotes
Toronto

Walk up basement - From builder ?

We booked a new construction detached home in Vaughan, and will be built by June 2021. We want to make the basement a potential second dwelling for rental purpose.

For separate entrance the only option is Walk up basement ie by digging in the foundation area in backyard and putting a door.

The builder is going to charge $23K to do this. Is it worth to be done From builder ? Or I can do better by getting it done from someone else once the home is built.
9 replies
Deal Expert
Feb 7, 2017
22798 posts
21632 upvotes
Eastern Ontario
Expensive.

But if you are set on doing this ... I would go with the builder
Cuz then you aren’t having to dig down into the landscaping / back fill
And crack open the foundation for an entranceway
And change a whole lot of other things to gain access

All of that being a MAJOR HEADACHE

And potentially compromising the designed watertight foundation etc

At least when the builder does it ...
I assume he’ll set the foundation forms to pour the concrete with it included,
And the backfill, site grade, and landscaping will all be planned accordingly
For this change in layout
Sr. Member
User avatar
Jan 30, 2008
877 posts
419 upvotes
Also note doing it later this is definitely work you'll need to get a permit for. I'm not sure about Vaughan but depending on the town, that could be a headache.
Deal Fanatic
Aug 29, 2011
8405 posts
5285 upvotes
Mississauga
While it may seem expensive, for any major changes/upgrades its always better to have it done during construction than after. Having something like a basement entrance added after-the-fact will be a massive pain in the ass.

Since the OP is looking to rent out the space, the extra cost now will be recovered in rental income later.
Deal Fanatic
Jun 7, 2005
9690 posts
1145 upvotes
Agree with go with builder. You might save some money hiring contractor doing it later, but it is very painful going through permit application with the City. Also, going through builder will not give them any excuse to void your warranty.

You are not talking about some cosmetic upgrades, this is related to structural changes. Going through architectural drawing, multiple permits application, etc, can easily cost you $10K already before starting the actual work. And they could even ban your idea. All I can say is that they won't make things easy for you. Let the pro (i.e. builder) to deal with them for all the red tape.

Especially you are planning to rent out the basement, you want to make sure you do every step probably accordingly whatever the city requires. $23K is nothing comparing to today detached house price. I doubt you can find a contractor to do it under $15K after closing. So, why bother to save a few thousands for all the headaches.
Deal Guru
Jan 25, 2007
11956 posts
7123 upvotes
Paris
I bet this is a $20k project after the house is built and you won’t be able to roll it into your mortgage.
Deal Fanatic
Aug 29, 2011
8405 posts
5285 upvotes
Mississauga
OP may also want to consider making the basement windows proper egress size before the foundation gets poured.
[OP]
Jr. Member
May 29, 2007
111 posts
24 upvotes
Toronto
Thanks all for the valuable input. Looks like there are real benefits in going with the builders. Most likely we will go through the builder.

Regarding egress basement windows- do we need these as far as ON building code is considered as I read here on Rfd somewhere that if you have door in the basement which leads to outside then that can serve as fire exit/ escape in emergency.

Do we still need egress windows? We will get it if the builder agrees to do this but just asking for curiosity
Member
May 12, 2003
371 posts
246 upvotes
GTA
For $23k, +1 builder.

If I was you, i'd ask about also getting larger windows in the basement.
Deal Fanatic
Aug 29, 2011
8405 posts
5285 upvotes
Mississauga
satin1410 wrote: Regarding egress basement windows- do we need these as far as ON building code is considered as I read here on Rfd somewhere that if you have door in the basement which leads to outside then that can serve as fire exit/ escape in emergency.
There are local codes as well when it comes to basement bedrooms. Some municipalities require each bedroom to have one; other municipalities are okay with AN egress window being somewhere in the basement and not necessarily in the bedroom.

I don't know what Toronto requires.

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