Much like a relationship, a house needs a good foundation to provide the much needed, strong base required to support the remaining structure.

A shoulder, to bear its considerable weight, a flat surface to provide a level base for its construction and to separate and protect other materials, such as wood, from the ground which could cause rot or infestation. A good foundation must be the very rock upon which you build your house. However, not all foundations are poured equally.

Some develop flaws due to water freezing and expanding, creating cracks in the cement. Leaks can develop and cause damage to interior materials. Walls can shift, causing damage to the frame. It is in these particular instances in which foundation repair must be conducted in order to salvage the structural integrity of the home.

The materials a foundation is constructed of often depend on the climate of the immediate area. Some house foundations are constructed of preservative-treated lumber, some of stone, and yet others of brick, but the most common material used to construct housing foundations, by far, is concrete. Most houses that require foundations or basements are those located in cooler climates, where the foundation of the house must be sunk deeper into the earth to avoid the dirt containing water from freezing and up heaving the house.

However, when a foundation is poured or laid, it can create differences in humidity in the earth located beneath the house. These differences can create structural problems during cooler temperatures when the water beneath the house freezes inconsistently, causing some areas of the foundation to raise, while others do not. This can put considerable strain on the foundation and often results in cracks, leaks, and other structural problems. It is at this point, in order to avoid further damage to the home itself, that the property owner should begin consulting foundation repair companies.

The average general cost to repair a failing foundation is approximately between $5000 to $7000 dollars. This cost assumes that there no other additional repairs, such as those to plumbing, will be required. A complex foundation repair job can range as high as $14,000 depending on the complexity of the job required. While it can be a costly venture, it is often in the best interest of the home owner to put forward the investment while the job is small, and only minimal repairs are required.

The cost of the foundation repair can also be affected by the type of foundation the house has. If a house has a foundation such as brick or concrete blocks, it is much easier to fix the foundation more as a precautionary measure, rather than a reactionary one that must be conducted in order to salvage the remaining structure.

The three main types of foundation are slab concrete, pier and beam, and t-shaped types of foundations. Due to differences in design, each type requires different materials and methods of repair. Some methods may be more complex and require more work than others. The size of the house, and likewise the size of the corresponding foundation, can also have an impact on the eventual cost.

Finally, the biggest influence in the cost and eventual outcome of the foundation repair is the company selected to perform the task. Workers with many years of experience and skill are a far more desirable choice as they are far more likely to provide better quality work with the greatest efficiency. In the end, this can save you money, as with poorer quality work, you may find yourself having to pay to have the job done again in few years time, and the efficiency will ensure you are not paying for additional work hours for workers who are less qualified to be doing the task of repairing your home.?

Foundation Repair Costs

Cost of Foundation Repair
Finding out that your home requires foundation repair can be quite a shock. As many homeowners already know, the cost of foundation repair can be staggering, especially if you are not wise in choosing your contractor for the job.

In order to better understand the cost of foundation repair, it is best if you first understand exactly what you are paying for, and the factors that may contribute to foundation repair cost.

Type of Foundation Damage

Small Vertical Crack in Poured Foundation
If your foundation has recently been poured, it’s possible that the type of damage that you have will be visible as small, vertical cracks that run at a slight angle in your foundation.  This type of damage is caused by the shrinkage that occurs in drying concrete during the curing process. In the majority of cases, this type of damage is relatively inexpensive to fix.

Horizontal Crack in Concrete Block/Brick Foundation
In concrete block or brick foundations, the direction of the crack in your foundation will allow you to find the cause of the damage. Horizontal cracks mean that your foundation is being subjected to lateral pressure. This means that the ground around your house will expand when wet, and contract when dry. This type of foundation damage is usually fairly serious, and can be very expensive to fix.

Vertical Crack in Concrete Block/Brick Foundation
If your foundation has several visible vertical cracks, this can mean that your foundation is having “settling” problems. This is usually caused by unstable soil conditions, which may cause your foundation to rise or fall in certain areas of ground. In most cases, damage to a foundation caused by settlement can also be visible in other areas of your home, such as in door and window frames.

Per Repair Estimates

Depending on the contractor that you choose to ask, the cost of specific repairs to a foundation may vary. It’s always best to consult at least three contractors about your home, in order to ensure that you are getting a fair price. Here are some general prices of the costs involved in foundation repair:

  • Inspection and Examination by a Foundation Repair Contractor - $300 – $800
  • Detailed soil report - $500 – $2,000
  • Simple Poured Concrete Crack repair - $400 – $800
  • Replacement of total area of basement floor - $200 – $400
  • Earthquake Reinforcement with Anchor Bolts - $1,500 – $3,500
  • Steel or Concrete Reinforcement Piers (per Pier cost)  - $1,000 – $3,000

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Average Total Cost

The total cost of foundation repair can vary, though is largely dependent on the type and extent of the damage. In general, the most common type of damage to foundations is damage that results from settling.

  • Underpinning of a house, per corner -  $3,500 – $5,000
  • Moderate foundation damage, base price - $8,000 – $12,000
  • Moderate foundation damage, average maximum cost - $20,000 – $30,000

Most homeowner insurance policies will not cover the cost of foundation repair, unless you specifically researched a policy that included that type of coverage. However, many foundation repair contractors will offer financing options.