What is an island Basement, why is it called “island” and why would you want to have one if you are not living near water.
An Island basement foundation is similar to a crawl space only with a lot more headroom. Typically any home that is built near the shore line of a body of water is required by FEMA and insurance companies (and county codes) to be elevated to a specific height. This elevation of the main living area provides the home with the ability to survive a high water event.
The thinking is that during a storm if the tide was to rise and flood the land, the house would be saved because it is raised up. The flood water would pass relatively harmlessly underneath the home. Usually any walls that enclose the island basement foundation can be designed to break-away during a flooding event, if it is in a Velocity Zone (meaning a flood zone area).
Depending where the house is built will determine the height of the island basement foundation. In some areas in Florida they can be required to be as high as 15 feet or more. It depends on the likelihood of flooding. Our average height is between 8 to 9 feet. Of course we can always modify this to meet your specific needs.
Island Basement Not Near Water
So why would you want an island basement foundation if you are not near any body of water? Well an island basement offers a lot of versatility. You can use it as a under-house garage if your lot is lacking in space for one. You can also use the space for storage, a workshop, tool shed and more.
Expansion is probably the number one reason. You can drastically expand the living area of a home by converting an island basement into living quarters. If a few things are taken into consideration during construction you will be primed to almost double the living area of your home quickly and easily when you need the room. Many new families take advantage of this. A home with an island basement gives them the room they need now along with the option to expand as their family grows.
An island basement is a great choice. It is at home in any environment, near the ocean, lake side, mountains, anywhere that people want convenience, safety, and expandability.