Q: I am planning to build a custom home this coming year. Can you help me decide whether to include a basement or a crawl space?
Great question! Basements and crawl spaces are very similar in the way they are constructed, however they both offer some very different pros and cons.
Basements increase the usable space available to be finished and offer a great space for all the mechanical and utility systems needed for your home with ample room to run ducts, plumbing and electrical. The only con is the increased cost. This can be dramatic depending on the way you decide to finish the space.
Similar to a basement, a crawl space provides ample room to run ducts, plumbing and electrical but it is more cost effective than building a full basement.
While a crawl space does add storage space it is not easy to access, especially for larger items. If you decide you would like or need more space in the future your only options are to under pin and lower the crawl space or do an addition. Both of these options are expensive.
I usually advise homeowners to go with a full basement. The flexibility for future use and expansion largely outweighs the cons. Happy building!
Text by Brian Dos Ramos, Kenneth Homes Design Build Inc.