Start building your house on the right foot, with the right foundation.
One of the first and most important steps in building your new home is making sure you start with a good, solid foundation. Regency knows that in order to get the house of your dreams, you need to build it on a stable surface.
Today we discuss the first few stages of building a home and their importance this has not he rest of the build from foundations to drainage to waterproofing.
New Home Foundations & Drainage
The footings of a new home help to create a strong foundation. In the past, many footings were made of wood, but today they are constructed of concrete, making them much more durable and consistent in sizing. Depending on the soil make-up of the property, the width of the footings can vary.
At the Hillcrest, we used extra-wide Form-A-Drain footings which is a 3-in-1 foundation solution. Unlike other footings which are removed after the concrete is poured, these footings stay in place and also provide a drainage system. This is great for the homeowner because it saves them from purchasing and installing a separate drain pipe, in addition to, providing drainage on both the exterior and interior sides of the foundation.
Since Form-A-Drain is installed prior to the footing pour, the entire system is visible during the footing inspection. The footings also provide ventilation for radon that might be exerted from the basement. Benefits of these footings include the fact that the drainage system will not sag or crimp which reduces risk of uneven drainage or blockage.
Pouring Concrete Foundation Walls
Foundation wall forming is a very labor intensive process during home construction. The photos here show thin steel rods placed between the forms. These rods help the forms stay together while wet concrete is poured between the forms to create the foundation. Once the concrete is poured, it has to set for some time to ensure it has hardened properly and then the forms are removed.
Throughout this process, a surveyor is on site gathering data, ensuring that everything is being done within the building restrictions. Be it a contractor squaring up the foundation or a civil engineering crew shooting survey data, these professionals confirm that the walls will be built per the set backs and designated top of wall grade. Once the concrete has set, the forms are removed and the main house foundation walls are revealed.
The Regency Hillcrest design uses a Tuff-n-Dri waterproofing membrane along with the 2” insulation. The waterproofing membrane along the foundation gives you peace of mind knowing your home is safe from all of Mother Nature’s mood swings. We highly recommend this system because without proper waterproofing protection, basement walls are susceptible to three main forms of moisture – leaks, seepage and interior condensation. Tuff-n-Dri can help prevent energy loss by insulating the exterior foundation walls as they has been the industry leader for controlling moisture in basements since 1983.
Too much moisture inside your home can foster damp, uncomfortable conditions, while extra water vapor in the air enhances the chill of winter and the hot of summer. Additionally, the Tuff-n-Dri membrane bridges potential foundation shrinkage cracks and hydrostatic pressure, giving you a solid and strong foundation for years to come.
Why does my House Foundation Feel so Small?
No matter how much work goes into planning the size and floor plan of a house, a question comes up every time we dig a foundation: “Why does it feel so small?”
It’s not uncommon to get that phone call after we pour a new home foundation. We’ve even had people ask if we used the right plans or used another customer’s drawings on accident. Don’t worry, we’ve never gotten that wrong!
It’s a common optical illusion for a foundation to look small, and once we drywall you’ll have exactly the opposite feeling. When you add the finishing touches and furniture, you’ll move in, park your car in the garage, walk around with a glass of wine, and realize that the room sizes are absolutely perfect!
This is one of our favorite stages of construction, right after the first floor gets capped. It seems to take forever due to the exposed foundation and all the heavy i-beams and flooring joists. But, after we cap the first floor, exterior walls go up quickly – typically within a week. Then your kitchen and great room views come into play, and you begin to see that all the time spent designing the home, positioning it on your site to take best advantage of long views, and sun exposure were worth it!