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View Poll Results: Do you presently have a basement?
Yes, I have a basement and like having one. 44 52.38%
Yes, I have a basement but wish I didn't. 4 4.76%
No, I do not have a basement and don't want one. 16 19.05%
No, I do not have a basement but I think it would be neat to have one. 16 19.05%
The previous four choices just don't fit for some reason but I wanted to vote. 4 4.76%
Voters: 84. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-21-2009, 01:14 PM   #21
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We had some heavy rains and river flooding a couple of years ago and again about a year ago and gazillions of dollars in basement damage in several counties. One of our neighbors probably had over $30,000 worth of damage done to his basement which has a woodshop, media room, and trophy room. He now has 3 sump pumps and an additional one outside. During the rains, quite a few people at work had to leave work in a hurry and/or take time off to address water in their basements.

Other neighbors had less severe water damage and I think they all added at least one more sump pump to whatever they had. One neighbor remarked recently that since he finished his basement, he gets very uneasy whenever it starts to rain. When it was just concrete he was unconcerned but now it would be very expensive if water got into the basement. Especially not a good feeling if you are out of town and the heavy rains start.

No thank you. I'll take my crawl space, 3-car garage and my "basement up above" and neighbors who love basements so we have somewhere to go if a tornado comes!
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Old 06-21-2009, 01:33 PM   #22
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Here in north east Ohio basements are standard. Ours, like most, can get to be musty, but after we installed whole house air conditioning it's no longer a problem. We used to have a little seepage at one corner after heavy rains but that was fixed by replacing the drains from the gutters.

Our's is under the entire house, divided into 4 rooms. One side is the laundry room (including a laundry chute from both bathrooms), workshop, storage and litter box zone. The other side has a small room with the furnace and water heater. The rest of that side is where my son has his recording studio. He has 2 drum sets, a couple of guitars and amps, an organ and keyboard, recording equipment, mics, cables and more equipment in racks. He also has a hand-me-down couch, chair and end table and a computer desk. This room has mirror tiles covering one whole wall, leftover from the previous owner. We bought heavy fabric and draped over the tiles which really improved the acoustics. This was easier than removing the tiles which are glued to the concrete wall with some black gummy substace that was going to have to be covered anyways.

There's another small room with shelving that's just for storage.

When the kids were small we tried to make the side where the studio is now into a playroom but it was just creepy and dark and musty before we got the AC. No one really liked it down there for any length of time. My son uses it all the time since he made it his recording studio.

I don't mind the laundry area being down there because it keeps the noise and lint and baskets of laundry out of sight. But I can see where as we age carrying large baskets up the stairs and through the kitchen may get difficult. If needed we have a small bedroom on the first floor that shares a wall with plumbing in the bathroom and we could add a laundry area there.

Many people around here fix up their basements and use them for living space but we didn't really need more room and if we're putting large amounts of money into the house it wouldn't be in the basement. Most workmen who have been in the basement say it's one of the drier ones around here. They've seen everything!
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Old 06-21-2009, 02:52 PM   #23
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....
I don't want a house with a basement......I would be terrified.....that is where all the monsters and ax murderers hide for god's sake!
Yikes, Citrine, I'm headed down to the first basement to move the clothes from washer to dryer as we speak. Thankfully, it's broad daylight.
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Old 06-21-2009, 03:18 PM   #24
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Yikes, Citrine, I'm headed down to the first basement to move the clothes from washer to dryer as we speak. Thankfully, it's broad daylight.

The axe-murderers are afraid of the spiders.
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Old 06-21-2009, 04:07 PM   #25
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The only time I think it would be nice to have a basement is when there's a tornado watch/warning in the area. Other than that, no big deal.
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Old 06-21-2009, 04:24 PM   #26
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I have a finished basement divided into a family room (with a daylight window), a bedroom (with daylight window), a bathroom and a utilility/furness room. If I run the dehumidifier it doesn't get a musty smell, but I have to run it all the time. My problem is I forget to empty the water and it stops automatically...then it gets the musty smell.

I would always want a basement (tornadoes/storms), but, I would prefer an unfinished basement since I don't really use it except for storage. I just feel better having a somewhat safe place to HIDE during bad weather.
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Old 06-21-2009, 05:25 PM   #27
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We had a basement in the first apartment we ever lived in and it was downright scary! I remember my mother asking my brother and I to go down there and get soda or other things she had stocked up on sale.....we would both go there together and then run up the stairs as fast as we could!
I don't want a house with a basement......I would be terrified.....that is where all the monsters and ax murderers hide for god's sake!

To think as kids that was our playground on rainy days
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Old 06-21-2009, 07:17 PM   #28
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The only time I think it would be nice to have a basement is when there's a tornado watch/warning in the area. Other than that, no big deal.
I never used the basement in bad weather. Supposedly you are safer, but I kept thinking about all that rubble falling in on my head and being flattened like a pancake.

I'll take my chances above ground.
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Old 06-21-2009, 07:56 PM   #29
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I never used the basement in bad weather. Supposedly you are safer, but I kept thinking about all that rubble falling in on my head and being flattened like a pancake.

I'll take my chances above ground.
At least you have a chance to live under the ruble if a tornado hits you point blank. Being outside you are as good as dead. Unless you are Bill Paxton and Helen Hunt.
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Old 06-21-2009, 08:09 PM   #30
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I grew up in the midwest with basements, and for at least half of my childhood my bedroom was in a finished basement. I don't remember them being damp or musty, and most were not walk out basements. Even after siblings started moving out, I chose to stay below ground. The only water problem we had was when a prankster stuck a hose in the window well one night and water seeped through the window well and put an inch or two of water in the room until my brother woke up.

Even in NC one of my houses was a split level with walk out basement and I liked it. A bit more damp but not bad, and the only water problem was a water heater that rusted out.

Now I've got a finished basement on a lot with a steep slant downwards, so it's a walk out. I wish I'd have insisted on poured concrete walls rather than cinder block, as it gets a bit musty unless I keep the humidifier going in the summer. The builder said he'd never had a water leak problem with the blocks, but I wonder if it'd help with the dampness. I love the space. I have a decent sized model train setup and a pool table in a long room, a family room with projection screen for movies, laundry, furnace/utility, and a spare bedroom used for storage right now, which may possibly turn into an exercise room. It's nice and cool in the summer. I also have drains by the water heater and wash machine in case of leaks.

I'd much rather take my chances in a basement in a tornado, and not get sent flying if one hits my house. But my house in Texas didn't have a basement, and figured the utility room or bathroom in the middle of the house would be safe enough.
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Old 06-21-2009, 08:24 PM   #31
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I grew up in the midwest with basements, and for at least half of my childhood my bedroom was in a finished basement....
Is that you, long lost brother?

Quote:
...But my house in Texas didn't have a basement, and figured the utility room or bathroom in the middle of the house would be safe enough.
To me, this is scarier than fire ants. Add it to the list.

The Cheers bar was in the basement:

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Old 06-21-2009, 08:26 PM   #32
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Had two great houses with basements. The first house (in Michigan) had the finished basement when we bought it but I expanded it to have room for the pool table. Had a fireplace also. The living room upstairs was too formal for everyday living and we must have spent 75% of out time in the lower "family room". Had a wet bar too. That was great living. Couple houses later in Ohio we had the basement divided and built the "game room" from scratch. Wet bar, pool table, organ, piano, etc. That was the greatest game room we ever had. Needed it as the kids were high school age and they had some nice parties down there. All the moves in our lives were because of transfers and that one was the last of the basement gamerooms. All in all, we've been maried 37 years and have lived in 13 different places. I'm sick of it. No more moving. No more game rooms. No more basements.
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Old 06-21-2009, 08:31 PM   #33
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I was watching one storm closely, and my plan if it got any closer was to grab my daughter's single mattress and we'd lie down in the tub with it over us. A friend of mine did that in Raleigh once when he heard the freight train noise. Luckily it just missed them. Thanksgiving weekend 1988, in case anyone else was there. I was out of town.
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Old 06-21-2009, 08:33 PM   #34
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btw, one of my housing criteria is to live on high ground, or at least not among the lowest in the area. That helps a lot with not getting water or relying on a sump pump.
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Old 06-21-2009, 08:34 PM   #35
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At least you have a chance to live under the ruble if a tornado hits you point blank. Being outside you are as good as dead. Unless you are Bill Paxton and Helen Hunt.
I didn't say I would be outside...I said I prefer to be above ground. There are safe avenues inside a home.

I am neither Bill nor Helen and I have managed to survive thus far.
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Old 06-21-2009, 08:41 PM   #36
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We're presently renters and are glad this home has a basement. The garage is only single car size, so we need the basement for storage. Our last home had no basement but did have a HUGE steel building 40' x 42' overall with a storage loft in half of it.

The home we owned in the early 90s had a daylight basement. That was my favorite basement because it didn't have the underground feel. It had a wood stove down there. In the winter, we'd keep a fire going most of the time and the heat would warm the main level floor to the point of barefoot comfort. The furnace ran only in the coldest weather.

In my mind, the ideal basement would be on sloped terrain with walkout on one side, a high quality water proof coating over concrete and perforated pipe footing drain around the whole perimeter that drains to an open daylight outlet (no sump pump required)
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Old 06-21-2009, 08:49 PM   #37
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When I was a kid in St. Louis (before we moved to Hawaii)
Like REWahoo's land, Hawaii's volcanic basalt strata is too close to the surface to make basements feasible. I can't remember ever seeing one here.
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Old 06-21-2009, 09:38 PM   #38
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Like REWahoo's land, Hawaii's volcanic basalt strata is too close to the surface to make basements feasible. I can't remember ever seeing one here.
We lived on the beachfront, so our house was built on sand only. I don't think I ever heard of a basement in a house like that in Hawaii, though it seems to me that I saw one very old home up in the mountains (in Maunawili) that had a basement. Must have used dynamite.

But, I also lived in houses in northern and southern California, Mississippi, Virginia, Texas, and Louisiana, as well as Hawaii, none of which had basements.
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Old 06-21-2009, 09:38 PM   #39
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I was watching one storm closely, and my plan if it got any closer was to grab my daughter's single mattress and we'd lie down in the tub with it over us. A friend of mine did that in Raleigh once when he heard the freight train noise. Luckily it just missed them. Thanksgiving weekend 1988, in case anyone else was there. I was out of town.
I have a lawyer friend that always seems to have near miss experiences. He was in the Caribbean during a hurricane. He and his wife went into an interior bathroom in the house with a couple of mattresses. He saw the walls heave back and forth. When the storm was over and they got out of the bathroom there was no house around them.

Another time, another island, he was chased by a woman with a machete. Another time, yet another island, he got bit a bug and came back with a hand twice the size as normal.
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Old 06-21-2009, 09:49 PM   #40
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Like REWahoo's land, Hawaii's volcanic basalt strata is too close to the surface to make basements feasible. I can't remember ever seeing one here.
I'm north of Wahoo and as far as I know there are no homes in my area that have basements. I did find out recently that our City Hall has one. I'm not sure how many people know this. Since I'm considered a "first responder", I was told about it.
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