Foundation thoughts

Asked by Rocki, 76018 Sat Jun 9, 2012

I have a need for multiple answers on these foundation questions. I realize all of North Texas has a foundation problem. I know some areas are worse than others in the DFW area. Since I am looking for another house in the Arlington area, how do I lower my chances of a foundation problem? I know some areas of Arlington are worse than others and some areas have used lime mixed in with the soil and double packing, etc. to attempt to reduce foundation cracking risks. Is there a particular year or 2 when most quality contractors did something in preparation of the land to nullify possible foundation risks of cracking-like adding lime? Which areas of Arlington have lower foundation risks? So far we are concentrating our looking to the southwest Arlington. Is it wise to just go ahead and have a foundation repair team put piers under or somehow stabilize a foundation to avoid future problems?

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John Straub, Agent, Fort Worth, TX
Sat Jun 9, 2012
Hi Rocki
Most newer homes built on a slab utilize a post tension foundation system this replaces much of the steel rebar that used to run through the foundation with a steel cable that is stretched or "tensioned" after 7 to 10 days after the foundation is poured. However, this only addresses the foundation itself, the graound and ground preperation are both equally important. Soil in many parts of North Texas are made of clay which is highly expansive however in a neighborhood you may have some home sites where a rocky outcropping of may be just below the surface in essence providing a solid surface to build on. Most builders/developer began commissioning soil reports about 20 years ago that involved taking random coring samples throughout a subdivision. The challange in your question though is it asks what is the ground like and how was that ground below that particular foundation prepared. I don' believe that anyone other than an engineer looking at a specific home can possiblly answer this question correctly for you. The final part of the equation "is how has the foundation been maintained since it was poured. To your final questions putting piers under a foundation that doesn't need work seems like it adds an expensive and unnessecary cost to your purchase. I would have the foundation inspected by an engineer and then follow their professional recommendations. You have a lot of variables in this discussion and I am sorry that this may not answer the question the way you hoped. There is a lot more involved in this than I have shared. I will be happy to help you in any way possible. Good Luck and God Bless!
1 vote
Kelly Bowyer, Agent, Arlington, TX
Mon Jun 11, 2012
There's some great information & food for thought already here. Rocki, you're asking some very specific questions that perhaps would be better answered by an engineer who does alot of work in the immediate area. Beyond that, most of Arlington has a history of sorts & SW ARL is an established area. I would suggest looking at individual homes that suit your needs & fit your budget, then worry about specifics like foundation problems. There's so many homes that have been built with solid construction & maintained over time. Some have already done some foundation repair. There will be a small percentage that need it.

It's important to have an experienced agent with a good eye for things like this. Also important to do inspections & you may want to hire a structural engineer to ease some concern. Remember you must have a good set of measurements in order to compare any significant changes later in time. Ask for any available reports & be a knowledgable buyer. Sounds like you're on the right track!

I would appreciate the opportunity to help in your search for a home. Please contact me direct if I can help further.

Thanks & have a great day!

Kelly Bowyer
Scott Davidson Realtors
0 votes
Cecelia Kirk…, , Arlington, TX
Sat Jun 9, 2012
It is best to pay for and use an inspection to check out everything before you buy.
0 votes
Dallas Texas, Agent, Dallas, TN
Sat Jun 9, 2012
Foundation is all based on how a family takes cares of the property. If you don't water the property then you will run into issue.

If you don't have a Realtor, happy to assist you. I am also a general contractor typically sight many areas of home if it has foundation issues.

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Lynn911 Dallas Realtor & Consultant, Credit Repair Advisor
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