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Can you count a remodeled basement as square footage when selling?

  • February 14 2009 - Kettering
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Answers (6)

You can't count it as added square footage in most states but, according to the Remodeling Magazine's Cost vs. Value Report 2010, in Ohio, you can recoup about 60% of the cost of the remodel in increased sale price.

There are also added benefits, such as increased energy efficiency. Insulated basement walls can save up to $250/year in heating and cooling costs. Then there is also the fact that prospective buyers will prefer a clean, dry, finished basement rather than a wet, humid and moldy one.
  • May 12 2010
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Don is absolutely correct. Receive free PDF copy of American Measurement Standard from sizematters@charter.net
  • March 11 2009
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Profile picture for bamkmartin
in Virginia yes as long as its done with building permits and according to code. 
  • February 23 2009
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No, finished basements are not to be included in the square footage of a home.  While there are some local variances, particularly for certain styles of homes, generally speaking, this is not allowed.

When your home is appraised by the buyer's lender, that appraiser will not include the finished basement in the square footage for the home.  However, they will adjust for the finished basement if necessary.

If your home is 2,000 square feet, but with the finished basement it totals 3,000 square feet, you still have a 2,000 square foot home.
The buyers' appraiser will appraise this as a 2,000 square foot home.
  • February 15 2009
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Wetdawgs is right if you go by the book. But I don't know how many houses I've looked at where they have included unheated garages and open porches in the square footage. As a matter of fact I've seen houses where they count invisible rooms in the square footage. You can check this out yourself by bringing a tape measure and a calculater with you next time you look at houses, you will be surprised how a 30'x50' house can list as 2,000 square feet. Including your basement may not be by the book but at least it's a finished heated living space and not an open porch.
  • February 15 2009
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
In most states, the answer is no when it is below grade.   You will have to check the state guidance for your state.   An agent should be able to tell you, or call your city planning office.

Often in house descriptions it will say something like "2000 finished feet plus 1000 square feet fully finished basement".  Yet the listing will call it "2000 square feet".
  • February 14 2009
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