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Basement Excavations and Conversions in Chelsea and Westminster

If you live in the Chelsea & Kensington area, then you know that it’s all about basements. You’ve probably seen your friends and neighbours, like Jemima Khan and Andrew Lloyd undertake home renovation projects with basements excavations and conversions.

In fact, according to an article in the Telegraph, a few years ago, developer Alan Waxman built a house not too far from Chelsea- in Notting Hill, that has two basement levels. The back garden has been lowered so that it stands at upper basement level through and open plan kitchen. In the lower basement he’s built a gym and bedroom.

Another trend is the “Garden Basement”. Literary Agent, Ali Gunn has a 33 foot subterranean reception room under the entire length of her garden.

According to an article in The Independent, there were 4650 planning permissions granted between 2008 and 2017 in the upmarket central London areas. Of this, over 1000 were in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.

Quoting from the article, “It is the 785 large and 112 mega-basements that should be the real focus of our interest. These almost 900 excavations are on a different scale to the standard constructions. Together they contain: 367 swimming pools, 358 gyms, 178 cinemas and 63 staff spaces. We also found 14 car lifts, seven art galleries, two gun stores – and one owner who admitted to building a “panic” room…

Perhaps the most “luxified” development we discovered was one that had been granted planning permission in Holland Park in 2013 under a large semi-detached house. It consisted of a new three-storey basement under the entire property and part of the rear garden.

It includes a staff kitchen, staff bedroom, six WCs, a gym, a media room, a family room, a family kitchen, a guest bedroom, a guest kitchen, a laundry room, a drying room, a sauna, a steam room, two shower rooms, a jacuzzi, a plunge pool, a pantry, a full-sized swimming pool and a beach. Yes, a beach.”

In fact, if you have about thirty minutes, watch this BBC documentary on Millionaire Basement Wars in London to enter a world where the words luxury, lavish and splendour are understatements. It’s truly an eye-opening documentary so be sure to watch it, if you are a property or home renovation enthusiast.

One of the perks of building a basement in areas like Chelsea and Kensington is the value-add to the property, as you will see in the video. According to Savills, in an article in the Telegraph, on a standard 4 bedroom period home basement conversion, the value of the property can increase by over 15%.

Not everyone in Chelsea and Kensington however are happy with this basement boom. With the surge in construction, the disruption to neighbours and the neighbourhood, this council receives the maximum complaints from residents with regards to these basement conversion projects. As a result, the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea have tightened regulations on building basements so that now you can go down only one level and your basement cannot take up more than 50% of the garden space.

With the number of basements being built in Chelsea and Kensington on the up, we have done most of our basement projects in these areas and are well-versed with council planning permission and building control requirements. Not only that, we know what clients in these areas are looking for; state-of-the-art equipment and controls, every aspect bespoke and unique to them and a space that will be the envy of all who visit.

Give us a call on 0208 191 7595 or email us at enquiries@sdabuildlondon.co.uk with your requirements and we’ll be in touch. If you want to get a feel of the high standard of work we’ve done, in some of London’s most prestigious areas, why not download our brochure? We’re sure you will appreciate the high-specs we are used to providing our customers.