Walkout Basement or NOT?

5 Replies

I have a property that we recently purchased and started the rehab on. As we were going over our rehab plan we noticed the side entrance to the house has a landing that is lower than the upper level (1st floor) and goes to the basement. You can also enter the 1st floor from the side entrance. One of the guys asked me if this was a walkout basement? I told him I think not because you have to go up stairs to exit but at the same time it does walkout of the basement. So I wasn't 100% sure although I am 99% sure it is not a walkout. Just looking for thoughts from others. Thanks 

Here is the house as it sits. 

Technically it is a walk out basement, if you can exit the house through a normal size door from the basement. It's different from what I've had for a walk out basement. My last house that I house hacked was a walk out basement, but it exited to the back yard that was on the same level as the basement and also hand several windows as well. It would also be considered a "day light" basement. So I don't know if you could market it as a walk out basement, but as long as it could be used as regular entry/exit point for the house and the basement is liveable/finished, I don't see why not. I'm sure people more knowledgable on this than me can chime in and provide clarity.

Hi Jason,

The definition may be location specific. Your local regulatory/permitting agency will have the definitive answer. If it is a walk out basement that'll be great for listing and marketing.

@Marcela Correa

 I agree. I will reach out to them to get a more clear answer and to be sure. Funny how in real estate after hundreds of deals you continue to learn. Another good thing about this business! Keeps you interested. 

I would say NO it's not a walkout but check with your local MLS board

To be a legal rental unit the basement must have two exits. At least in DC anyways. Would assume all states are the same.

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