Should You Build A Basement Under Your Log Home?

The conclusion most people reach is that basements are just too convenient to do without. When designed, built, and used correctly, they can provide much useful living and storage space in a log siding home. A log home basement provides more advantages than disadvantages and can be affordably built.

  • Provides extra living space for a growing family
  • Gives you additional rooms for specific purposes
  • Allows much more storage space
  • Provides rooms for guests
  • Makes room for parties and gatherings

These benefits sound great and they are but there are a few disadvantages you must weigh. For one, they add to the construction cost. For another, if the walls and floors are not sealed properly, they can allow moisture or water to creep in. Last, some of the space may end up unused. The following ideas should help with the decision to include a basement.

Log Home Basement: Its Further Benefits

Most of us just don’t seem to have enough space for all we want to do. The current trend in log home building is adding more areas for future use and filling our need for larger homes. We may not need the extra room, but many of us think we do. Here are some more benefits:

  • Move noisy areas further away from the bedrooms and dining area
  • Provides space for hobbies that don’t fit in with the ground floor rooms
  • Have a private bar or kitchenette for entertainment
  • Provides a space for a workshop that can get messy
  • Allows a man or woman cave for a get-away spot
  • Provides extra rooms when a lot is narrow
  • Makes a nice play and toy area for younger children

Remember, a log home basement can add significant market value to your house. Now it is time to decide what type and what size basement you may want.

Log Home Basement: Types and Decisions

Adding a basement to your log home requires some critical decisions, including: 

  • Do you want a finished or unfinished basement?
  • Do you need poured concrete or block walls?
  • Should it be made like an apartment with separate rooms?
  • Will insulation be necessary and what type(s) should be used?
  • Will it have an outside entrance or a kitchenette?
  • Should it be for storage or a root cellar only?
  • Will you use log siding, wood paneling, or drywall on the walls?

Perhaps the major decision is its size. Do you want a full, three-fourths, or half basement?
And don’t forget the type of flooring, kitchen, and bathroom appliances. 

TIP: Create a budget for all these choices and all others you may want to add including excavating and subcontractors. You will then know the costs for all the variables.

“The conclusion most people reach is that basements are just too convenient to do without. When designed, built,                          and used correctly, they can provide much                                            useful living and storage space.”

Log Home Basement: Disadvantages to Consider

The greatest disadvantage for most log homeowners is the overall cost. There are a few more:

  • Basements are more vulnerable to moisture and water damage
  • Precautions when building and maintenance after building are important
  • If a basement is not used as much as planned, it becomes a very costly addition
  • Inconvenient for moving furniture and appliances up and down the stairs
  • Is sometimes left messy because the area is out of sight from the upper floors
  • There is a higher chance of radon gas issues

Basements can add much-needed usable space but don’t build one unless you plan to use it frequently.

Controlling the Costs 

How much more will it cost to build a basement? You must ask yourself if you can afford one or should you spend the money on other projects. Typical costs for basement components are:

  • Foundations range from $5,128 to $19,350 for a concrete slab at current prices depending on size, materials, and labor
  • Foundations for a full-basement range from $26,800 to $50,300 at current prices
  • The median cost for finishing log home basements is $25,000 to $35,000 at contractor prices. You can lower the cost substantially if you do some of the work yourself.
  • Floors tend to be the most expensive part of finishing a basement.

Controlling the final costs all depends on the size of your basement and how fancy you want to make it. 

Summary: To Build a Basement or Not

We hope these ideas will help complete your decisions about adding a basement to your log home. Consider their pros and cons, discuss them with other people who will live in the home, and shop around for contractor bids. Once you have conducted enough research, the decision should become clearer.

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