Hey all,

We have a 1904, brick foundation home with a basement access door off a storage/furnace room that leads to the backyard and stairs to the main floor that you access through a basement kitchenette next to the store room.  My husband has made his home office in a room on the other side of the basement from both the stairs to the main floor and the basement door to the outside.  Both the stairs and the access door are in adjoining rooms on the same end of the house so if a fire broke out in either of those rooms, which conveniently hold the furnace and a kitchenette, both the most likely places for a fire to break out, my husband would likely be cut off with no way out.  For my own peace of mind, I'm thinking we might want to put in a an egress window leading from his office since he spends most of his day down there.  The windows in his office and the rest of the basement are all those wider than tall rectangular basement windows you see in old homes.  I don't want to ruin the antique look of the house by putting an incongruous huge egress pit on one side, although I guess we'd consider it if it were the only option.  Since there isn't a "bedroom" down there, we don't necessarily need to make it to full fire code, just something that gives him a fighting chance to get out or get rescued.  Has anyone ever put an egress window in an antique home?  Is there any compromise anyone has found between safety and preserving the integrity and style of the antique home?

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