Is Your New Home Likely to Subside?

8 June 2016
 Categories: Construction & Contractors, Blog


Many homeowners may have fears about the costly repairs needed to stabilise a home that has subsided. Consequently, they may wish to know what factors may make their homes likely to subside. Such information can help those homeowners to take preventive measures so that they avoid having to underpin their houses. This article discusses some of the factors that may cause a home to subside. Use this information to help you to take steps to prevent your new home from subsiding in future.


Look closely at the landscaping around your home. Are there large trees close to the building? Those trees may have an extensive root system that may spread very close to the foundation of your house. Tree roots can cause a building to subside in several ways. First, they can take up vast amounts of water from the soil underneath a house. This can cause the house to subside once that soil dries out and contracts. Second, the roots can enlarge and displace the soil underneath the house. This can cause the house to heave at some point and to subside at another point. It is therefore very important for you to remove all the large trees that are close to your home so that you prevent the tree roots from causing the house to subside.


Pay attention to two aspects of property drainage if you would like to prevent your house from subsiding. The first aspect is the underground drainage. Have the drainage system inspected using a video camera so that any underground damage to drains is detected and repaired quickly. Without that, drainage lines may discharge their contents into the soil underneath the house to the extent that the soil will become very soft and shift. You should also pay attention to the drainage from the roof. Damaged downspouts or gutters can discharge water close to the house. That water gradually accumulates underneath the foundation. Eventually, the house will subside if the soil becomes so wet that it can no longer carry the weight of the house. Avoid this problem by ensuring that all drains from the roof work well and discharge their water away from the house.

Adjacent Excavations

Your house can subside if excavations on a nearby property affect the stability of the soil underneath your home. You can prevent this problem by being vigilant about what construction or excavation work is going on close to your property. Ask the person doing the work to explain what measures he or she has taken to stabilise the excavation site so that nearby properties are not affected. For instance, the walls of the excavation site can be shored up so that they do not cave in and cause the nearby soil to shift.

Contact house underpinning professionals for advice about what options are available to stabilise the house in case it has signs of subsidence, such as cracks in the walls. You can then use the suggestions above to prevent the problem from recurring in future.