Foundations

Slab

Basement

Crawl Space

The slab is probably the easiest foundation to build.

It is a flat concrete pad poured directly on the ground. It takes very little site preparation, very little formwork for the concrete and very little labor to create.

It works well on level   sites in warmer climates -- it has problems up  north because the   ground  freezes in the winter and this freezing can shift the slab at worst and at least lead to cold floors in the winter

A house with a basement starts with a hole about 8 feet deep.

 At the bottom of the hole is a concrete slab, and then concrete or cinder-block walls form the outer walls of the basement.

 Actually, a basement is poured in three pieces in most cases: the "beams," then the walls, and then the slab inside the walls.

This approach helps keep the basement waterproof.

 

A crawl space has several advantages over basements and slabs:

It gets the house up off the ground (especially important in damp or termite-prone areas).
It is a lot less expensive than a basement and comparable in price to a slab.
Duct work and plumbing can run in the crawl space, meaning that they are easy to service and move over the lifetime of the house.

Most of the time, a crawl space is made of cinder block with a brick facing.

 

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