House Foundation Types and When to Avoid Them

Homes are constructed using many different types of foundations. Each type has a specific range of uses – they should be used based on the soil conditions surrounding the home, as well as threats such as flooding, frost, storm frequency and more. Buying a home with the wrong foundation can be an invitation to disaster, so it pays to know a bit more about what you should look for in a Brampton home before you buy.

Slab Construction

A home on a slab is a common construction option in areas where there is a high water table, where basement construction is not possible, but they can pose special problems. For example, there is no access to areas under the home, as there is nothing between the home and the underlying soil but the concrete slab. These can also be problematic if the plumbing is in the floor, as it makes it very difficult to perform repairs. Plumbing in the ceiling can also be a hazard if a pipe leaks or bursts.

Basement Construction

Basements are common today, particularly in areas where the local water table is low. If the water table is hundreds or thousands of feet below the surface, then a basement can be an excellent option. This is especially common in areas like Brampton where the foundation should ideally be located below the frost level, which is not usually possible with slab foundations or crawlspace foundations.

Crawlspace Construction

Crawlspace foundations are exactly what they sound like. The home is supported on tiers, which have cement footers for added stability. There is usually an area between the bottom of the home and the top of the soil, though the amount of space here can vary from a couple of feet to almost basement height. Crawlspace foundations are often used in areas where the soil is very stable – such as high-clay content soil.

There are many other types of foundation, as well, including insulated concrete forms, concrete masonry units (cinder blocks) and more. However, not all types are ideal for use in this area. If you are buying a home, then it’s important that you work with a home inspector to ensure that the foundation type used for the home is correct for the area. Problems here can lead to the need to replace the foundation, a process that can cost a very large sum of money and create massive headaches, as well.

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