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Why install a Basement Emergency Window Well System

     Safety According to the U.S. Fire Administration, "4,000 Americans die each year in fires, and over 20,000 are injured," many of which could be avoided with proper escape plans and routes. An egress window in each bedroom, as well as in other "habituated" areas (basements included), drastically increases your chances of safe escape in the event of a major house fire, and provides entry points into your home for emergency personnel.

     Added Value Adding egress windows in your basement is especially important when it comes to increasing the value of your home, since it's the key to bringing basement bedrooms and living areas up to code and including them in calculations of overall square footage. According to Popular Mechanics magazine, "with an extra legal bedroom [in the basement], you could recover 10 to 20 times your window installation cost when you eventually sell your home."

     Added Comfort Sam Satterwhite of The Family Handyman writes that "an egress window in a basement dramatically brightens an otherwise dark, dingy room," which isn't surprising considering the fact that most building codes require egress windows to provide "a clear opening of at least 5.7 square feet." A window of that size is big enough to provide a wealth of natural ventilation to the stuffiest basement, as well.

     Design You don't have to line basement egress window wells with ugly corrugated tin. If budget isn't an issue, you can build with materials like wood, stone, or brick. Or you can purchase composite window well liners that mimic natural materials, making for basement egress windows that are practical, cost-effective, attractive, and easy to install. You can even "landscape" with small planting beds to add a little color and life to this traditionally drab space.

 

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