Before You Call a Foundation Repair or Piling Specialist

Is this you?

  • Your house has cracks in the walls, sticking windows and doors and possibly water in the basement.
  • You may want to replace the foundation to provide for better structure and more developable space.
  • You might be looking to lower the basement to add to your living area.
  • Your foundation needs professional attention. Can it be fixed? Will your home or building be structurally sound again? Will you be able to sell it?
  • You want to preserve your foundation and basement structurally and protect yourself against water and mold.

Accurate diagnosis is key

Accurate diagnosis of the real problem is critical to the success of any foundation remediation. Seeking advice from an experienced team that uses proven technology increases success and limits the risks. We recommend that finding a reliable company should begin with the trade associations. Good companies that are committed to quality, training, and customer service tend to be active in their industry and trade associations. These companies participate in the education and technical research attained by these groups.

Interview potential candidates

The next step in your process should be to interview prospective companies you believe share your values and can offer you the experience and service you seek. Have them view your project to examine your needs and allow them to offer recommendations and direction. Your objective is to assess the company’s capability, experience, knowledge, technology, recommended options and their ability to work with you. Pay particular attention to their ability to speak comfortably with you and clearly explain the decisions you have to make. Prepare a list of questions to ask during this “interview”. Print out and use our Before You Hire Checklist. Any company quoting work should be able to provide a list of references and proof of licensing, be sure you get this from them at the time of the initial meeting.

Interior vs Exterior Repairs

A common decision that a homeowner has to make when faced with a “leaky basement” is, “should they facilitate repairs from the interior or exterior”. Interior repairs have their place. Their place, however, does not have anything to do with foundation crack repair or waterproofing. Most interior methods are of a temporary nature and carry very limited warranties. Any interior remedy has specific limitations, which should be explained to you if they are quoted on for your purpose. Lack of flexibility, uncertain penetration into the foundation crack and adhesion issues are a few potential issues whether it’s grout or an injection material.

Structural Work

Underpinning, foundation wall replacements and PWF walls are structural items that have several important items that should be considered before making a decision.

  • Proper Engineering should have gone into the design of any proposed work.
  • Does the company you are dealing with have an APEGA Permit to practice and a structural Engineer on staff?
  • Is the Engineer the company is using familiar and experienced with all aspects of a remediation?
  • A Building Permit is required for structural work. The Building Permit Application would require an Engineered design. In some cases Engineer’s inspections and Compliance Letters / Schedules are required.
  • If Underpinning is being performed, does it address the cause of the problem and is it an Engineered and proven application?
  • If Underpinning is being performed, has there been a soil bore hole done and has the pile being used been properly engineered?
  • Have the various options for Underpinning piles (meaning types of piles) been discussed with you?
  • Have the various foundation types and methods for wall replacement been discussed with you and are you fully aware of the differences? THERE ARE DIFFERENCES AND THESE DIFFERENCES AFFECT COST.
  • Is the company qualified and experienced enough to do your work?

You get what you pay for

After choosing a company that can deliver a professional project or repair, then you are ready to consider price. Judge competence first and the ability to complete the job before considering price. A low price on a failed repair or project doesn’t help your situation.

Next consider price in relation to options. Usually skill and your preference will line up proportionally. Like everything else, you get what you pay for. The decision is how much risk are you willing to take in relation to the price and quality of choices of the company you prefer. If you are seeking a lasting repair, good quality project and warranty, with price as a second objective, then you can choose from the top of your list. If focus is driven by price over confidence and risk, then you face a different decision. Choose wisely.

The Lowest Bidder – John Ruskin (1819 – 1900)

“It’s unwise to pay too much, but it is worse to pay too little. When you pay too much, you lose a little money – that is all. When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing that you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The common law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a lot, it can’t be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is wise to add something for the risk you run. And if you do that, you will have had enough to pay for something better.”

 

What our customers say:

Bobbi Beeson

It’s no surprise that repairing a home’s foundation and all that comes with the project would be a stressful, messy and unpredicatable job. Kevin and …

Read more

Woodvale Colony Park and Estate Management

(We) were very pleased with the services that your company provided to Woodvale Colony Park, and especially appreciated your efforts in helping us und…

Read more

"COMMITTED TO A GREAT CLIENT EXPERIENCE SINCE 1989"