The type of foundation a house is built on impacts its structural integrity and the type of maintenance required to maintain your home. It can also dramatically change your living experience. However, there’s no single solution that is best for all properties, since numerous factors must be considered before deciding. Consider a slab vs crawl space, for example.
Crawl Space Foundation
What is a crawl space foundation? A crawl space foundation is an elevated foundation. They have exterior foundation walls that are built up to provide the home with one or two feet of space between the base level and the ground. This creates an open-air space under the flooring.
Why do houses have crawl spaces? A crawl space foundation is beneficial because it creates a convenient way to access the home’s plumbing system and HVAC ductwork. It can also be useful on surfaces that may not be level, providing more flexibility for those that are building a home on a plot that isn’t smooth. Are crawl spaces safe? Yes! When built well, they are safe. Are crawl spaces bad? Not necessarily.
Benefits of a Crawl Space
Some of the benefits of a crawl space foundation include:
- They provide direct access to the home’s plumbing, electrical, and HVAC systems.
- There’s a better ability to create a level home when grading the land isn’t ideal.
Setbacks of a Crawl Space
There are some drawbacks of using a crawl space as well:
- They are more likely to succumb to moisture-related issues, which means they typically need to have a vapor barrier or other types of waterproofing installed.
- They create an area under the home where animals may nest.
- They may need some upkeep from time to time.
When considering a slab foundation vs crawl spaces, there are some noted differences. A slab foundation sits directly on the surface of the ground. The land is properly graded, footers are poured, and then a slab of concrete is placed. The home is then built up from that point.
Slab foundations are a common option in many areas, providing a durable solution for most needs. Slabs tend to be less expensive to install than a crawl space, and they can be faster to put in if the property is already graded and ready to go. However, there are a few key factors to keep in mind before choosing this foundation option.
Benefits of a Slab Foundation
There are numerous benefits to a slab foundation, including:
- They’re fast and more affordable construction.
- They’re less prone to termites and other pest damage.
- They’re low maintenance (they need very little upkeep).
Setbacks of a Slab Foundation
There are some drawbacks to slab foundations, as well, including:
- In the case of shifting soil, this can increase damage risk.
- A sloped property, especially where grading is not ideal, makes them impossible.
- They can suffer damage in cold climates.
Which One Is Right for You?
When choosing from a slab foundation, concrete crawl space, or other types of foundations, have an estimate completed as your first step. That estimate should look at both options and provide information on what to expect based on your property needs. Some things to keep in mind include:
- The property as it is now and grading possibilities.
- The amount of maintenance required.
- How affordable the project needs to be.
- How fast it needs to be built.
- Remodeling goals over the long term.
Let Our Professionals Guide You!
Deciding between a slab foundation or a crawl space isn’t one you have to make on your own. Contact KE Braza today to inquire about a consultation. Let’s talk about your options to determine which option is best.