Foundation repair can be a scary phrase. Many don’t know what to expect, how to estimate what it might cost, or even where to begin. Allied Foundation has, however, put together this blog on foundation repair to ease worried minds and provide some information that can make foundation repair go from a terrifying phrase to a manageable task that anyone can be prepared for.
To start, it’s important to know that foundation repair does not mean starting from scratch. Foundation repair is fixing what is broken underneath the house, or business, and leaving what is above the foundation alone.
Not all foundation repairs are the same. Minor cracks can be fixed in a short amount of time with only a few hundred dollars, but foundation repairs can cost up to $25,000. It isn’t saying that every foundation repair will either be one or the other. Foundation repairs range between those two numbers, and there are many different facets of the repair that can increase the cost.
At its most basic, foundation repair often relies on piers. Piers are used to fix sinking foundations. Placed underneath the foundation, they are lifted into place with hydraulics. Piers are roughly $300 a pier, and the total cost of the foundation repair is based on how many piers are needed to best repair the foundation correctly. On average, piers alone can cost about $2500.
The process of fixing a foundation can be anywhere from two to five days depending on what other steps need to be taken in order to get the piers into place. Allied offers two kinds of piers to best suit the needs of any foundation repair. Both piers are created from concrete and put in place with the process mentioned above, but Allied's Pile Guard Piers, with positive alignment and interlock guards made from mold-formed polymer, have a lifetime guarantee.
Additional Cost Factors
Crawl Space Type
The cost of the complete repair of a foundation, using the pier method, goes up depending on what is needed to put in the piers. Houses that sit above a crawl space of wood are usually more expensive, simply because they take longer to fix. Sometimes the structure of the wood crawl space is not up to par, which could put the entire operation at risk. This can result in extra charges to ensure that the crawl space itself is sound and secure before any other repairs begin. Another cost that can be accrued when it comes to working within a crawl space, is, well, space. If contractors do not have enough room to operate within the confines of the crawl space, they may be forced to make more room for themselves which can add time and money on repairs.
Extent of Foundation Damage
Other than crawl space limitations, there are other factors that can increase the budget of a foundation repair. Foundations can often begin suffering damage long before anyone notices. Sometimes, signs of foundation issues such as cracks in walls or doors that no longer close, can be ignored. Ignoring or not seeing the signs can mean that foundations sink into deeper levels of damage, which at the end of the day is going to increase the cost of repair.
There are many causes to foundation damage, but often, it is what the foundation was built on. Poor quality soils are a large culprit for causing foundation damage, and if neglected for long enough time, the entire home can become unsafe.
In order to determine exactly how safe the structure is, many contractors will recommend getting what is called a structural report. These reports are created by engineers and given to the repair team so that all of the damage can be addressed in the most efficient and safe way possible. It is important for any contractor to have the full idea of what they are looking at. It ensures, as well, that any foundation repair estimates will be more accurate with no scary surprises or high-cost unexpected charges later down the road.
After the report, it is easier to go to a contractor and get a full, sound estimate. With the report and a little investigation of the property, foundation repair workers will be able to lay out the best case scenario with an accurate estimation of where on the range of costs the repair will fall.
At the end of the day, foundation repair is expensive! However, the foundation of a house is integral to safety, peace of mind, and to resale in the future. Fixing the foundation ensures that the house remains liveable - the longer that a foundation issue is ignored, the worse it gets, and that could mean higher repair costs in the future, but also a greater risk of causing damage so extensive the house is no longer able to be lived in.
With a better understanding of where the costs come from and what exactly the costs fix, the Allied Foundation hopes to create a sense of ease around a process that can be stressful and taxing. For more information on Allied’s process for foundation repair and exact signs to look for, check out our foundation repair page.
Allied Foundation offers free estimates, so if you think you may have any foundation issues, don't wait! Keep your house in the best condition it can be in by having an Allied professional look into the status of your foundation, free of charge.