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What's a "Walk-up" Basement?

Discussion in 'Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, USPAP' started by VolcanoLvr, Feb 26, 2011.

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  1. VolcanoLvr

    VolcanoLvr Senior Member

    4
    Oct 30, 2003
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Washington
    In the wonderful UAD reporting requirements, one of the allowable terms to describe a basement is 'Walk-up.'

    This is different than the 'Walk-out' type.

    So what exactly is a walk-up basement? Could it also be a walk-out basement (dual design)?

    In a decade of breaking cobwebs, I've never heard the term Walk-up basement....but I'm just a greenhorn!
     
  2. wickedness1

    wickedness1 Senior Member

    0
    Jul 12, 2007
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Ohio
    From Wikipedia

    A “walk-up” basement is any basement that has an exterior entrance via a stairwell. Some designs cover the stairwell with angled “basement doors” or "bulkhead doors" to keep rain water from accumulating in the stairwell.
    When initially built, the main floor joists are often exposed and the walls and floors concrete (with insulation, where appropriate). Unfinished basements allow for easy access to the main floor for renovation to the main floor. Finishing the basement can add significant floor space to a house (doubling it in the case of a bungalow) and is a major renovation project
     
  3. VolcanoLvr

    VolcanoLvr Senior Member

    4
    Oct 30, 2003
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Washington
    Thanks Wicked...
    Isn't it wonderful that we must consult the 'accepted source of every definition' for real estate terms that are not contained within the Dictionary of Real Estate Appraisal (4th) or in The Appraisal of Real Estate (13th)!

    See below for 'my' definition of basements per F/F requirements.
    So here's what they say about a 'walk-out' basement:
    A daylight basement or a "walk-out basement" is contained in a house situated on a slope, so that part of the level is above ground, with a doorway to the outside. The part of the floor covered by the ground can be considered the true basement area. From the street, some daylight basement homes appear to be one story. Others appear to be a conventional two story home from the street (with the buried, or basement, portion in the back). Occupants can walk out at that point without having to use the stairs.

    For example, if the ground slopes downwards towards the back of the house, the basement is at or above grade (ground level) at the back of the house. It is a modern design because of the added complexity of uneven foundations; where the basement is above grade, the foundation is deeper at that point and must still be below the frostline.

    Full-size windows can be installed in a daylight basement. These can provide exits for bedrooms (building bedrooms in basements is usually illegal without an outside escape). Ventilation is improved over fully-buried basement homes, with less dampness and mold problems.

    Daylight basements can be used for several purposes - as a garage, as maintenance rooms, or as living space. The buried portion is often used for storage, laundry room, hot water tanks, and HVAC.

    Daylight basement homes typically appraise higher than standard-basement homes, since they include more viable living spaces. In some parts of the U.S. however the appraisal for daylight basement space is half that of ground and above ground level square footage. Designs accommodated include split-foyer and split-level homes. Garages on both levels are sometimes possible. As with any multi-level home, there are savings on roofing and foundations.

    So to meet mama/pappa fannie/freddie requirements, it seems to me that:

    1- A walk-out (wo) basement will have egress to the exterior via a doorway direct to ground level & not connected to a stair, and probably will have interior access to the dwelling
    2- a walk-up (wu) basement has to have a stairway connected to the exterior access door in order to get to ground level, and 'may' have interior access to the dwelling
    3- a interior only (in) basement is only accessed from the dwelling, and has no outside doorway, but may have exterior windows above ground level (or in wells)
     
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