House Plans With Basements

Our stock plans include this selection of houses designed for construction on a basement foundation. Houses built on a basement foundation provide an excellent opportunity to use the basement as a garage. Others may find a hillside basement that opens out onto a patio more suitable to their needs.

A basement or a walkout basement is a great option for your Southern Cottages home plan. House plans with a basement or a walkout basement work best with a sloping lot. Typically, the house is situated so that one wall of the basement can be open to the grade outdoors and is accessible through a doorway and/or a garage entrance. This wall can have windows and glass just like any other floor. The other three walls are positioned against the earth although, usually, 30 inch square windows can still be placed at the top of the earthen wall between the grade and the porch floor above. This helps to give natural light to the space making it feel more pleasant and useful.

The basement is very economical space because it is built within the foundation of the house which is necessary anyway. It requires no roof but requires only extending the walls to provide proper ceiling height and the installation of a concrete floor slab. The basement can be a tremendous amenity to the house serving as a storage area, garage, rec room, game room or workshop.

Many of the house plans offered by Southern Cottages have a basement foundation option including the Island Cottage, Lookout Cottage, Plantation Cottage, Hip Cottage, Mountain Cottage and Country Cottage.

Typically the basement walls are constructed of 8 inch or 12 inch concrete masonry units (CMU or block). The block is reinforced with steel rebar positioned vertically in the block cells at no more than 4’0” on center and at all corners and at door and window openings. These cells are then filled with grout (loose concrete) for structural integrity. At the top of the wall is located a continuous bond beam. This is a CMU unit with an open top made to hold to steel rebar horizontally, which are also poured with concrete. The vertical steel rebar in the wall is embedded in the concrete footing, then extends up the wall and into the bond beam where it is also embedded in the concrete. This gives the basement wall it’s structural strength and integrity. Anchor bolts are placed in the concrete of the bond beam while it is still wet. A treated wood plate is then bolted to the top of the bond beam after the concrete has cured. This plate receives all the wood framing for the floor walls and remaining structure of the house. The wall framing for the house is tied to the top plate of the basement wall by overlap sheathing nailed at 3 inches on center or by use of metal framing clips or of vertical tie rods to the wall plate above, depending on the structural design.

The exterior surface of the basement wall abutting the earth must be waterproofed prior to backfilling. A French drain (sock-wrapped drain pipe surrounded by washed stone) must be installed at the base of the foundation wall and travel all around the earthen sides of the basement and drain to daylight at a designated location. This helps to relieve the buildup water pressure that will occur through the soil and helps to mitigate the dampness or moisture that will travel through the basement wall. The interior surface of the basement wall can be painted with special hydraulic paint products such as “Drylok”. The wall surface must be prepared properly due to the moisture migration which will invariably occur through the wall. The interior joint between the slab and the wall must be called with a hydraulic stop leak caulk by Drylok or other manufacturer for this purpose.