Uncertain about walkout design
We are debating building a new home on a 1/2 acre lot. The particular lot we are considering has a walk-out condition, but we are uncertain whether a walk-out is a good design for our family. Note that we would likely not develop the basement for a few years, but would use the undeveloped basement for an office, secondary play area, exercise area, and for storage. Our children are young now (infant and 4 yr old) and we have no pets.
The back of the house faces due west. There is a 17' x 5' deck off the breakfast area, in front of the great room. Access to the rear yard would be through the basement doors, or through the mainfloor laundry room, which appears to be graded the same as the front and then slopes down to the walkout rear grade.
What are the considerations of a walkout basement, particulary considering our young children and the west-facing direction of the back of the home? What are the pros/cons of a walkout design in our situation?
Thanks so much in advance....