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View Poll Results: How many of you have a basement?
Yes 54 68.35%
No 25 31.65%
Voters: 79. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-05-2015, 08:13 PM
 
Location: Wonderland
44,651 posts, read 36,106,549 times
Reputation: 63165

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Quote:
Originally Posted by cheese plate View Post
You win. An additional 1,400 square feet for no extra money is, in reality, far worse than not having that free extra space. Yay Texas!!!
If it's considered a negative (and thus lowers the sale price) for a house in your area NOT to have a basement, and if a finished out basement (walls, plumbing, etc) commands more money than one that's unfinished, then you are not getting "1400 square feet for no extra money." THAT is my point.

It has nothing to do with Texas and everything to do with real estate principles.

You're paying for your basements - and the nicer one is, the more you'll pay for it. The living space of a basement isn't free.
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Old 01-06-2015, 12:29 PM
 
Location: Milwaukee
3,451 posts, read 3,394,206 times
Reputation: 2890
Quote:
Originally Posted by KathrynAragon View Post
You're paying for your basements - and the nicer one is, the more you'll pay for it. The living space of a basement isn't free.
Yes it is - if every house has a basement, and every house around here save a tiny % has a basement, it's simply part of the cost of the house. So when you compare housing costs, not only is TX more expensive for the same square footage, you also get a bonus 1,400 or whatever sq ft included in the cost (free, because they all have basements).

Yay Texas, where even disadvantages are advantages
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Old 01-06-2015, 04:30 PM
 
Location: Wonderland
44,651 posts, read 36,106,549 times
Reputation: 63165
Quote:
Originally Posted by cheese plate View Post
Yes it is - if every house has a basement, and every house around here save a tiny % has a basement, it's simply part of the cost of the house. So when you compare housing costs, not only is TX more expensive for the same square footage, you also get a bonus 1,400 or whatever sq ft included in the cost (free, because they all have basements).

Yay Texas, where even disadvantages are advantages
Oh come on - I've lived in areas where there basements are common and everyone knows - yes, even me - that not all basements are created equal - and that a nice, finished out basement with natural light and regular height ceilings adds a LOT more value to a home than a low ceilinged, dark, unfinished basement space. So yes - you're paying for your basements.

But keep on telling yourself that you're not if it makes you feel better.

Not only that, I've posted link after link (as opposed to personal anecdotes and sarcasm) that show that homes in the midwest are the smallest on average in the US and homes in the south (often without basements) are significantly larger than homes in many areas that do have more basements.

Often, the bonus space in attics or above garages is not counted in the square footage of these homes either - not unless it is finished out and heated/cooled.

Now - for some reason you've made this some sort of contest between Texas and, I guess Wisconsin, I don't know - Texas and the world of basements, maybe?

So let's look at some real figures rather than relying on personal anecdotes and pithy shots from the hip.

The median home price in Wisconsin is $154,000. This value has declined .3 percent in the past year and is expected to rise 2.1 percent in the coming year.
Wisconsin Home Prices and Home Values - Zillow

The median home price in Texas is $136,700. This value has risen 7 percent in the past year and is expected to rise 3.3 percent in the coming year.
Texas Home Prices and Home Values - Zillow

The average home size in Wisconsin is among the tenth smallest average of all fifty states, coming in at a whopping 1669 square feet on average. In fact, six of the ten states with the smallest average house size were in the Midwest.
Wisconsin ranks 10th in U.S. for smallest house sizes


The average square footage of homes in Texas (which is ranked #5 out of 50 states for largest homes) is 2031 feet. Yes, completely finished out - heated, cooled, plumbed, flooring, standard (at least) ceilings, etc.
10 states with the biggest houses | Inman News | Page 5

Now - before you say, "But our square footage is DOUBLE because of our basements!" - no, that's not the case most of the time. I mean, sure, I guess occasionally it is, but generally speaking, a basement isn't the exact square footage of the home above it. And RARELY is the quality and finish of a basement to the same standard of the main house - often the ceilings are low, and/or there are fewer windows and less light, and generally speaking the finishes aren't to the same standard as the main house.

If they are - then the price reflects that - so you're paying more for that space. It's not "free space." Just like someone in Texas will pay more for a bonus room above a garage that's finished out than they will for an empty space waiting to be finished out.

So no - you're not getting DOUBLE the house or square footage just because you have a basement. You MAY have double the square footage, but if it's a finished space, like I said, that's reflected in the sale price.
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Old 01-06-2015, 06:24 PM
 
Location: Wonderland
44,651 posts, read 36,106,549 times
Reputation: 63165
Cheese Plate - here's one more point: I don't even have much interest in trying to prove which state has the best housing - Wisconsin or Texas - because the bottom line is that housing alone doesn't make or break a person's decision about where to live. Neither does the cost of living - or proximity to family - or even work. Decisions about where to settle and build a life are not based on one factor alone for the vast majority of people.

If you love basements and you love Wisconsin and you can build a successful and happy life there, more power to you! I am genuinely glad that you're able to do so - and I'm sure Wisconsin has many wonderful features and areas and housing options and that if I had to move there, I could settle in quite happily somewhere.

But I don't have to live there - I have built my life in Texas and I love living here. I love my house, I love my town, I love my lifestyle here in Texas - at least as much as you apparently love yours in Wisconsin. My house is perfect for ME and for MY family. I got a great deal on it and like I've stated, it has so much storage that I can't even use it all, and I have absolutely zero interest in or need for a basement. If, however, I lived in a 1660 square foot house, I can assure you I'd need a basement or SOMETHING for extra storage and living space.

I'm glad you're so content with your basement. I'm quite content without one - and they're not practical in many regions of the country. Hence different storage and living space options.

It's all good.
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Old 01-06-2015, 08:55 PM
 
Location: Charleston, SC
723 posts, read 1,397,141 times
Reputation: 288
In Charleston, you can probably count the number of houses with a basement on a couple hands in the entire metro.

Our elevation is maybe 5-10 feet where we live, and water is right below us. With marsh all around us and flooding during hurricanes, it is impractical to have one. There's a few more in the Summerville area, and more in the Columbia area where the elevation is higher.
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