Sooner or later, building owners in particular will be confronted with the term "cubature". With the cubature calculation it concerns a measuring method, with which the converted area of real estates is determined. Because often the indication of the pure living space is insufficient: While this reflects only a two-dimensional value, the cubature indicates the volume of the real estate and thus a three-dimensional value.

## Definition: What is the cubature?

The term "cubature" is derived from the Latin word for cube (cube). With the cubature you can calculate the enclosed space of real estate in cubic meters. The basis for this is, in simplified terms, the formula "length x width x height", from which the spatial volume of the building is derived in the end. In contrast to the calculation of living space, which is based only on "length x width", the ceiling heights are also taken into account here, among other things. Based on the cubature, for example, the energy efficiency of the building can be evaluated. Also the value of the real estate can be determined on the basis this value more exactly than for instance over the pure floor space.

The cubature is used, among others, in architecture, construction and real estate valuation. The term is also used in restoration, but here it refers less to volume calculation and more to the faithful reproduction of a demolished or historic building.

### Cubature, enclosed space, gross volume: What is the difference??

The terms "enclosed space" and "gross volume" are also frequently used as synonyms for cubage. According to DIN 277-1, the latter is currently the technically correct term. It also differs slightly from previous calculation methods such as the enclosed space. For example, until 2016, a flat 2 percent was often deducted for exterior plastering. Today it is simply included in the calculation. The outer limits of the building are now decisive.

## What is the cubic capacity needed for?

While cubage is one of the lesser-known terms in the real estate industry, it still comes into play more often than you might think. So you need the value among other things for this:

- Valuation of real estate
- Calculation of construction and renovation costs
- Real estate financing
- Mortgages
- Residential property insurance
- Building application

Especially for the latter, you can not avoid the cubature calculation, because usually building authorities require the specification of the cubature for each individual floor. But banks also have an interest in the cubature, for example when it comes to financing new buildings. In the case of existing properties, on the other hand, the living and usable space calculation may be sufficient under certain circumstances. It is best to clarify in advance what values your bank needs to make an offer.

## How is the cubature calculated?

Length x width x height: This simple formula for calculating volume is probably still familiar to most people from mathematics lessons. For simple shapes such as cubes and cuboids, the volume may still be easy to calculate, but most properties are characterized by special features such as sloping roofs, bay windows, covered terraces or simply winding rooms. As a layman you can take pen, paper and calculator yourself, but if in doubt you should leave the cubature calculation to a professional. If you make mistakes and the real estate financing or the building application is based on incorrect information, this can be expensive in the end.

### Calculate cubage yourself: This is what you should bear in mind

For the cubature calculation, you should first divide the house into parts that are easy to calculate. Often the individual floors are used for this purpose. The roof with the slope as well as any extensions or building sections with a lower ceiling height must be calculated separately.

If you want to calculate the cubage or gross volume yourself, you should first study DIN standard 277-1 in detail. Here is a precise description of how to calculate the cubature: since 2016, the decisive factors for this are the exterior boundaries, i.e. the outer edge of the exterior walls, the roof surface and the underside of the floor slab. If an attic is not developed, the actual cubic capacity must be calculated. Not be taken into account:

- Deep and shallow foundations
- Light wells
- Exterior ramps
- Exterior stairs
- Entrance roofing
- Cantilevered sunshades
- Roof overhangs in areas that are not fully developed
- Chimney heads
- Ventilation shafts and pipes

### Have the cubic capacity calculated by a specialist: What does it cost?

From what has been said so far, it is clear that the cubage calculation is usually not a simple matter. Experienced architects can assist you here and do the complex calculation for you. The cost here depends heavily on how big and how angled your house is. As a rule, the expert settles accounts by hourly rate. In most cases, the costs amount to a low to medium three-digit sum.

## Conclusion: cubature calculation is more complex than expected

With the calculation of the cubature you can find out how much volume your property has. Among other things, this value plays a role in determining the value of buildings and in construction financing. If it is a new building, the building authority will also ask about the cubature. Although you can calculate the converted space even as a layman, you should not take the procedure lightly. In general, real estate is not a uniformly shaped cube, which causes numerous difficulties in the calculation. In case of doubt, it is better to commission an architect with the calculation.