Basement Waterproofing Advice from the NHBC
The NHBC (National House Building Council) has highlighted and warned against the possible risks being taken by contractors who fail to take note of the BS8102 Standard and Building Regulations. A free 16-page downloadable guide, published recently by the organisation, fully details these specifications and what contractors must do to ensure adherence.
The NHBC has been established since 1936 and provides guidance, along with a range of services, relating to all manner of construction factors including housebuilding, training, sustainability and health & safety. An extremely well-trusted organisation, the NHBC is the biggest provider of new-home warranties in the UK, with around 80% carrying NHBC 10-year cover.
The new guide has been created with architects, designers, technical directors and construction managers in mind and begins by explaining that, although the amount of basement tanking related failures is small, individual claims can cost anywhere up to a staggering half a million pounds. The guide goes on to say that these costs and the disruption they cause ‘highlight the importance of ensuring basements are designed and built correctly.’
Basement conversion is still experiencing a massive growth in popularity as more people discover the benefits of extending downwards, not least the increased value it adds to a property. An article in The Telegraph in February said that: “on standard four-bedroom period homes, basement conversions can increase value by around 15 per cent”. If this work is not carried out to a sufficiently professional standard, however, the consequences for both contractor and homeowner can be nothing short of ruinous.
The NHBC guide comprehensively and clearly explains the ‘desired outcomes’ of all three grades of BS8102 - this is essential to ensure contractors can accurately determine the requirements of a particular client before ensuring that these are met. Advice on making proposals for basement tanking work and the restrictions on accredited materials is also given, along with a handy FAQ section detailing the ins and outs of basement waterproofing. Though aimed primarily at trade professionals, the NHBC guide is an invaluable and authoritative source of relevant information for property owners considering a basement conversion or basement tanking project.