Crawl Space Reclamation: What does it cost?

Maybe you blame the movie Home Alone for making you afraid of your basement. Or perhaps it’s because the space is tight, dark, and mainly unusable for anything other than storing old boxes, Christmas decorations, and family photos.



We believe that your basement shouldn’t be a scary place. In fact, we specialize in digging out crawl spaces so that you make the most of the livable space in your home!


What is the cost to remodel your basement?


When you are reclaiming your crawlspace, two things will need to happen.

1. You will need to add more space by increasing ceiling height. This can be done by digging down (done with basement lowering like underpinning) or extending your ceiling structure to add height (typically, this is very expensive and an extensive renovation.

2. You will need to renovate.


In Vancouver, underpinning starts at $120/sq ft and the renovation needed (once the underpinning is completed) will usually start at $125/sq ft. This puts your total for an underpinning project at around $245 sq ft. Learn more in our blog, Underpinning 101.


When remodelling your basement, you can also consider adding in other desired features, such as another bathroom, an in-law suite, or an income suite. Basement lowering is a great way to allow more space to update plumbing and electrical. Making it the perfect time to get the dream basement you’ve always been dreaming of.


How can you make more room in your crawl space?


Digging out your crawl space is one of the best and most cost-effective ways to add livable space by increasing the ceiling height. We can effectively add more space to your home by following our basement lowering techniques. Covered in our blog How to increase your home’s value without tearing down: 4 Benefits to Basement Lowering, we cover the three methods of basement lowering, including:


  • Underpinning: dig under the existing foundation while supporting your house, and then create a new foundation.

  • Slab Lowering: Remove the existing basement slab to expose the buried foundation at a lower depth.

  • Benching: install a new foundation directly in front of the existing foundation.


It is essential that professionals carry out this work, as you will need to ensure that your foundation is reinforced correctly and the appropriate drainage is installed. This is especially important in the Lower Mainland! You may need to consult engineers, foundation specialists, and city permit offices to ensure that you are tackling this project in the right way. Working with a reputable basement lowering specialist, like Wallace Underpinning, can help you navigate these approval processes and keep unexpected setbacks away from your project.


How long does it take to renovate your crawl space?


Depending on how extensive your crawl space reclamation project is, the average basement lowering can take anywhere from 4-12 weeks. We typically suggest that our clients start planning their basement lowering project three months before they’d like to have it completed. This allows for enough time to get the appropriate permits and approvals to keep your project on time.


The benefits of reclaiming your crawl space


Aside from no longer giving your kids nightmares, there are many great benefits of getting more space from your basement, including:

· A cost-effective way to add more livable space

· Fewer restrictions for zoning and bylaws

· Peace of mind that your foundation is properly reinforced


If you’d like to get started on your crawl space project, contact our team today to get a quote!


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