Your home’s foundation is crucial for bearing the building’s load for as long as it remains standing. Any good foundation must support the structure, prevent groundwater from entering the building and act as a shield against water and soil vapor.
If you’re building a new home, you do have several options for the kind of foundation you will use, including slab and crawlspace foundations in Tennessee. Though this isn’t going to be the most exciting part of designing your home, it will certainly be one of the most important, and one of the first decisions you will need to make.
Here is an overview of the three most common types of foundations used for home construction, from the least to the most expensive.
Slab foundations require relatively little preparation compared to the other two types of foundations you’re most likely to see for residential use. Their lower level of preparation and lower cost make them popular among people looking to complete their home projects on a budget.
To start with, the contractors pour concrete footers a couple feet below the finish grade. After this is complete, they lay two layers of concrete block on top of those footers, at which point internal piping can be installed, followed by a layer of rock filler and four more inches of concrete on the top.
The benefits of this style are that it is by far the cheapest option for foundations, and that it will require the least maintenance. However, because plumbing systems are buried down below the slab, repairs can be extremely difficult and expensive to make. Slab foundations in Tennessee also do not offer as much protection as other options against storms or bad weather.
Crawlspaces are used to raise a home several feet off the ground. There will be a footing poured, and then blocks laid similar to a slab, but the purpose here is to create a foundation that will support the walls of the structure over the ground.
Crawlspaces make the utilities more accessible than slab foundations, and also lead to warmer floors, as the first floor isn’t being built directly on concrete and the crawlspace can be conditioned. They are also cheaper than basements. However, crawlspace foundations in Tennessee are more likely to have issues with moisture, even when using high-quality vapor barriers. They also don’t offer you much protection against inclement weather.
A basement is dug below ground level. Older basements were built with cinder blocks on top of concrete slabs, and the cinder block construction made them prone to leaks and structural failures over time. Today’s basements, however, are made with poured concrete, which results in much fewer issues with structural integrity and moisture.
Basements bring the foundation below the frost line of the area, ensuring greater structural integrity over a longer period of time. They offer more square footage and usable space to a home, and the ability to finish off those spaces for whatever purpose you see fit. They provide very easy access for repairs and maintenance, and greater storm protection than other options.
However, basements do cost more, and there’s always the risk of flooding if you do not have a sump pump.
For more information about your foundation options in Tennessee, contact the experienced team at Warrior Precast LLC today.