Not sure if this is correct forum to post in so forgive me if I got it wrong.
I'm looking at a property that is begging to be a duplex but lacks a separate entry into the basement that already has a kitchen ready and waiting. The best way to accomplish this would be to cut an entry door the concrete wall at the back of the house (as the basement currently lacks an entry point).
Has anybody done this before or have any experience with this? Any help or advice is appreciated.
It can be done!
I haven't done it myself but I've seen it done before
Not sure on the pricing but I'd suggest contacting a local concrete guy first, since they'll know how to cut through it. Usually it's done with some kind of diamond blade.
Ck with City on permits. Structure integration...
@Sam Shueh is absolutely right! Definitely best to check to see if it's possible first.
Definitely check with an engineer. I wanted to make a partial cut out of a short stem wall recently, and the engineer hemmed and hawed about it a bit. Cutting a full door out could have a lot of affects, depending on what that foundation wall is doing. It's most likely doable, but you'll want to know the implications and have an engineered stamped design so you're not liable if anything fails.
As for how to do it. Once you have a design, you can hire someone. Search for "saw cutting" on google in your local area. Or go to home depot and rent a demo saw. They're pretty intimidating to use, but not that bad once you get the hang of them. You'll have to cut the wall from both sides, probably, so you'll want to hammer drill a small hole all the way through at the beginning and end of each planned cut, and then snap a line between those holes. Then just cut along the snapped line. Use water while making the cut to reduce dust.
Really good point. I wouldn't have thought about it if somebody at my local REIA meeting last night said she was trying to make a single family into a duplex - and actually did all of the work for it (separation walls, separated electric, etc) before she found out her lot was 300sf too small, by code, to do a duplex.... Luckily for her, there was a clause about if not direct neighbors objected, she could proceed anyway.
But yeah, I knew it could be done but I wouldn't dare attempt it myself. I was just hoping somebody knew a ballpark on price and how intensive the labor would be.
The header was the part I wasn't exactly sure how to do. Wondering if its best to build a faux wall to support floor joists while you cut the entire concrete wall, top to bottom, then build it all back in 2x6 - or - do you somehow cut out a lintel shape in with the door? I'm a home designer, not a home builder, so I know how to organize spaces but not always how to pull it off haha. I've worked with contractors enough to be dangerous - where I know the basic idea of how to do something, but if I tried it myself I would probably miss a small detail that would ruin everything. So yeah, I'm smarter than to try something like this on my own haha
@Robert Fisher try Marco Coring and Cutting out of Roanoke. They did one for me about 7 years ago for about $800. That’s just the concrete cut, and in my case there was no engineering required. I was a licensed contractor at the time and did everything else (permits, etc.).