The word “foundation” evokes thoughts of strength, permanence, and solidity — the basis for everything that follows. A home’s foundation is simply the most important part of its construction and overall performance, if not top of mind among home buyers and owners.
The reason there are different types of residential foundations has to do with the soil and other conditions of the lot, regional building materials, the skills of the local labor force, and, where possible, needs and personal preference.
Almost all single-family home foundations in the U.S. are built with concrete or masonry blocks or some close variation, such as precast concrete panels or insulated concrete forms; a few are built with steel or treated wood, but those are rare occurrences and for special conditions.
Regardless, a new home has one of the following three types of foundations:
Slab. A slab foundation is a lot like it sounds: a monolithic, horizontal block of poured concrete. The slab is usually supported by relatively shallow perimeter footing that runs along its entire boundary just below the ground. The center of the slab rests on or is embedded with a steel mesh over well-compacted and level ground.
Walk-Out basement. The Walk-Out basement is a a foundation type that is being used more and more in San Antonio and throughout the Hill Country. A “walk-out basement” is usually used in a home situated on a sloped lot, so that the home is designed to follow the “lay of the land”. A part of the home is located on the higher parts of the land, and a second level “basement” is on the lower area covered by the ground which is considered the true basement area…