The availability of land in prime areas is becoming increasingly limited, and home owners wishing to move into these areas are faced with the prospect of buying an existing home and remodeling or tearing the old one down and starting again. There are several advantages to a tear down in that the new structure can be built to current standards, be more energy efficient, and designed to suit the owner.
However, it’s not necessary to demolish the foundations. Provided they are robust, in good condition, and strong enough to support the new building, they can be reused saving time, money, and materials.
Why Reuse Existing Foundations?
Depending on when the original structure was built, the existing foundations may comply with current building codes and be in good condition. By retaining these foundations, construction of your new building can start sooner and costs will be substantially lower.
It also avoids the need for extensive earthworks, which cause disruption, and the time needed to build new foundations. Reusing existing foundations is a cost effective solution and avoids the need for demolition of the current foundations.
It’s probable that repairs will be required to the existing foundations and it’s necessary to obtain a full inspection report on the condition of the existing foundation before starting work.
However, once the old home has been demolished, any repairs are easily effected and this is also an excellent time to attend to the water proofing of the old basement to ensure that there are no future problems. Any external concrete repairs required can also be tackled, especially if there has been any subsidence or other movement.
It’s very likely that your building work permit requirements will be simpler because the original foundations are being retained. In some cases, permits may not even be needed. However, it’s wise to ensure there are no special requirements, such as the need to retain historical features, and to make sure the new building is constructed in compliance with local regulations.
Reusing your existing foundation helps the environment. First, there’s no need to demolish and dump tons of old concrete. Second, the damage to the local environment around your building is less as there is a limited need for earthworks and evacuations. Existing vegetation can be left largely undisturbed.
At the same time, your new home will use less energy and you can incorporate green features to further reduce the impact on the environment. Your neighbors are sure to welcome the fact that the construction time is short and they won’t be inconvenienced while your new home is being erected.
Although there will be some design constraints from using the existing foundations, you will be able to introduce new solutions and model the structure to suit your needs. Should the need arise, it is possible to make alterations to the foundations to allow you to take advantage of modern building techniques.
The appearance of your new building can be modern and pleasing yet still comply with local requirements. By taking advantage of developments in building techniques, you will have a better insulated structure with new features that you wouldn’t be able to introduce if you simply remodeled an old building.
Let ESOG Show You the Way
If you are considering a tear down, speak to the professionals at ESOG. We have over 30 years of combined experience in foundation restoration. Our team will ensure that your old foundations are in good shape and, if necessary, refurbished into tip top condition to enhance and provide a solid foundation for your new building.