Do I Need Basement Underpinning?

Underpinning a basement

The basement in any Hamilton home can be a source of worry for homeowners since that is where many problems are likely to occur. Issues with a basement or foundation of a home can cause a lot of headaches and can be costly to repair. One of the best things a homeowner can do is be proactive and address any small issues before they become big ones. One process of preventing bigger issues from happening is called underpinning. Here’s what you need to know. 

What is underpinning?

Underpinning is a process by which the foundation of an older building or structure is strengthened and stabilized. This process will help preserve and improve the structural integrity of a building. 

Why would a home need underpinning?

There are usually two main reasons a Hamilton homeowner will select to have underpinning done on their home. 

In most older homes, the basement was not designed to be a living area like in more modern homes. This means the ceiling heights are often lower, and there is ductwork in the way that makes it difficult to use it as living space. The process of underpinning can increase the useable living space in your home. 

The second reason is usually to upgrade the home’s mechanics. In older homes, underpinning can expose old plumbing, electrical and even insulation. This means that you can bring your home up to today’s building codes. 

How do I know if my home needs underpinning?

There is a time when underpinning becomes essential – which would be when the foundation wall starts shifting away from the home and is no longer able to safely support the structure of the home. 

However, there are some signs that underpinning may need to be done sooner – and this can give you a chance to get it done before it becomes an emergency. These signs include a change in the shape of the walls of your home (like bulging, cracks or shrinking), a change in the shape of windows and doors, or if the whole structure of your whole home seems to have shifted or your foundation is weak and cracking. 

In some cases, Hamilton homeowners may have to get underpinning done because the construction of new, nearby structures has excavated the soil supporting the homes in the area. 

Why is underpinning beneficial?

Underpinning will not only improve the strength of the foundation of your Hamilton home, but it can also help you turn your basement into a cozy, insulated living space that you didn’t have before. 

Further, it can increase the value of your home significantly since it will increase the living space available. 

Contact Conterra Foundation today

If you are considering lowering your basement or underpinning the house, we can help. Call us today for an inspection and quote.