We’re told to build everything (our homes, relationships, and careers) on a good foundation. When discussing home repair, your house’s foundation is the very base of the house. It’s what keeps it together and in place.
A house’s foundation is vital to its ability to stay in shape. That’s why it’s essential to have your foundation in check. Unfortunately, they can also be some of the trickiest to repair—not to mention some of the most expensive home repairs out there. Here’s what you need to know about repairing your home’s foundation.
The first step to knowing whether or not you should even worry about having to repair your foundation is looking for signs that something is wrong. If you notice any of these issues, repairs should be done:
- You have cracks in the foundation or on your walls. If you notice cracks on either your foundation or walls, it’s a surefire sign that you need to perform some foundation repairs.
- You noticed your foundation is settling, moving upwards, or sinking. Yikes! This can be a sign of a foundation that needs regular updating. This is normal for older homes but still needs to be addressed.
- The doors and windows in your home are having trouble opening and closing. When your foundation goes bad, the framework of your home can start to warp. This can lead to gaps in your windows and doors. It can even cause them to be challenging to open and close!
- The counters and cabinetry are starting to separate from your walls. When your foundation is going bad, your house will literally tear itself apart. This can lead to cabinets getting separated from walls.
- Your home was recently affected by an earthquake. Any time that an earthquake hits, you should make a point of checking to see if your foundation was affected. This simple move can save your home and your life.
There are different types of foundation layouts that you can have, and that’s great. However, the more significant issue to be aware of is the material. Your foundation’s material will determine what caused the problems.
Poured Concrete Foundations
Poured concrete foundations are prevalent these days because of their low price tag. Problems can arise from poorly-poured concrete, shrinkage cracks, and bad mixes.
Cinderblock foundations tend to have the most problems with having ground moisture that pushes against the blocks, making them rub against each other.
Stone foundations are typically found in older homes, and they are the sturdiest of all. With these foundations, the biggest issue is water damage. If you are dealing with stone that’s been troweled over, you might have water damage.
In a word, no. Don’t try to fix your foundation yourself. While you could go the DIY route when it comes to fixing things like cabinetry, plumbing, or painting the walls, your foundation is never something that should be done on your own.
Due to how important this is for your home’s wellbeing, an expert should always be called in. Otherwise, you risk causing further damage to your home.
Foundation repairs vary depending on the material that your foundation is made of, the type of repairs needed, and other factors. When you first call in a foundation repair company, you will need to get an estimate and assessment from a group.
Most foundation repairs will cost between $350 to $1350 on average. However, if you have extensive damage, you may see a price tag as high as $18000.
When you’re trying to get your foundation repaired, it’s essential to avoid unlicensed companies or individuals. Though they might offer lower prices, their work is not guaranteed and may cause further damage to your home. Instead, use these tricks to help you get a lower price:
- Shop around. When shopping around, make sure to ask about what is included in the repairs. Get at least three estimates before you make a decision.
- Ask about estimate details. Believe it or not, different estimates will lead to different things being accounted for. You will need to precisely determine what the estimate includes and if there are any hidden fees not accounted for.
- Don’t hesitate to ask if there are any discounts. Sometimes, companies might have an unadvertised discount you can take advantage of. You might be surprised!
- Listen to the specific issues picked up during your diagnostic and estimate. The best way to find out what to expect from a foundation repair is to search up the particular issue you’re having with your foundation. You can’t get accurate online estimates without knowing what the problem is.
- Be suspicious of unusually low estimates. If you get an estimate in the low $200s, you should rightfully raise an eyebrow. Is the damage that little, or are you dealing with hidden fees? It’s better to find an honest contractor than to pay twice.
- Make a point of regularly maintaining your foundation. The more maintenance you do, the less you will need repairs. It’s just that simple.
If you are concerned about foundation repairs, now is the time to move and start shopping around. Your foundation is what keeps your home together and also keeps it in place. It’s pricey to fix, but trust us when we say that this isn’t a repair that you can slack off on.
Your foundation is not something to be trifled with, but that doesn’t mean you need to obsess over it. A keen eye on your home’s build, regular maintenance, and occasional checkups will make all the difference in how your home feels.