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slab on grade vs crawl space

by , Posted to on 08/25/2009 1:28 PM | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 01/18/2007
Location: ND
I'm going to have a home built but can't decide whether I should have it built on a cement slab or a crawl space.  It's in a flood plain and with a crawl space it would have to be quite elevated so cosmetically I'm not fond of this option.  On the other hand I've heard of slabs shifting a little resulting in uneven floors.  Anyone have any experience with building on a concrete slab?  Pros and cons and if you've heard anything regarding their resale.  I'd appreciated any info you have.  Thanks
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/25/2009 2:14 PM | Reply #1 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 03/10/2009
Location: nd
are you going to be federally required to carry flood insurance? and what flood plain, 100yr,500yr?.  will you be hauling in fill? you can still put a full basement in if certain parameters are met.  what have your neighbors done?
 
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/25/2009 2:16 PM | Reply #2 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 01/09/2002
Location: ND
If you're on a floodplain, I would strongly suggest hauling in fill material and doing the crawlspace.  Either way you can have issues as we are talking about the Red R. Valley, right?

If so, keep away from river banks and train tracks.  River banks in the Valley tend to "flow" toward the river when you put something heavy on them and trains vibrating the ground tend to make homes within a few blocks settle.  Often unevenly!  Walk into many older homes near the Red River and drop a marble on the floor.  More often than not it will want to roll up against the wall closest to the river.  Closer to the river, less age the house has to have before you notice this.

Besides, we do have tornados in this state.  Not really common, but there's no digging a hole once it's working its way up the block.
“Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it.” ~ Mark Twain
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/25/2009 2:16 PM | Reply #3 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 07/27/2009
Location: ND
A reputable concrete company that takes their time and sets it on a good sand base will be best.  As far as shifting that will take most of it if its done right.  However areas are differnet if land shifting has been a problem in that area before you might be better off with a C.S. Also your right they doint look right from the outside.  Id go S.O.G. personally
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/25/2009 2:19 PM | Reply #4 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 01/18/2007
Location: ND
It'll be in the 100 year flood plain.  There is already fill on the lot and basements are not an option.  Neighbors have a mix of crawl spaces and slabs. 
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/25/2009 2:28 PM | Reply #5 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 01/18/2007
Location: ND
The lot is in south Bismarck near Apple Creek.  I am have the soil tested for compaction as we speak.  My biggest concern is how slabs are looked upon at the time of sale.  Could it hinder a sale?
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/25/2009 2:38 PM | Reply #6 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 01/08/2003
Location: ND
Couldn't tell you which is best but what I will say is find a way to design some type of heat for it. My crawl space has no heat and the floor is freezing in the winter. Bottom line whether you heat the floor or heat the space, you will appreciate it!!!!
 

Good Luck and Good Fishin'

Eric T


Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/25/2009 2:56 PM | Reply #7 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 07/24/2008
Location: ND
I think it COULD most definately hinder a sale. My personal preference is I wouldn't buy a house without a basement or crawl space, but that's just me. A person can lose out on alot of storage going without. It's all preference though, so do what you like.
Jared Schillinger
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/25/2009 4:51 PM | Reply #8 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 02/20/2009
Location: nd
A couple suggestions: I believe your crawl space can be below the required minimum elevation that is specified for living quarters...I believe it would need to have some openings into the crawl space to allow water to flow through the structure (a window on each end?). A buddy of mine has a wood foundation crawl space with a concrete floor in the crawl space and a wood floor in the living quarters. The advantage of the crawl space is access for heat/ac ducting, wiring access, water line/plumbing access. If you choose a slab on grade I highly recommend a geothermal system with a heated slab. Another consideration is minimization of flood damage through design details...use the insulated concrete walls for at least a foot or two above grade to help keep walls etc out of high water, don't put ductwork down low or under the floor where it can be flooded and become a mold problem (again, benefit of a hot water geothermal system..no ductwork to flood). The building code will require a 4' deep foundation wall for a residence, they won't allow just a slab on grade for living quarters...your "slab" could still be on earth fill but the edges and walls would rest on the footing walls....that coupled with the typical sandy soils of the river bottoms will minimize movement. If you chose the concrete floor, pay extra for reinforcing steel in the slab. Building code requires only fiber mesh or wire mesh reinforcing, which only minimize shrinkage cracks..#4 bars 2' on center north-south and east-west oughtta hold the slab together for minimal shifting if it ever became an issue.  Rebar cost me an extra $300 and change for a 24'x24' slab, and the contractor said that was the best $300 I'll spend on the whole building. I know all this because I'm currently building a shop in the river bottoms. (I'm also an engineer and used to be on Burleigh County planning commision) ...check with the building inspectors to determine what is required BEFORE you build anything.
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/25/2009 6:27 PM | Reply #9 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 12/16/2001
Location: ND
RninND,
 
I am a contractor and I can tell you this.  About four years ago I was building twin homes in Grand Forks.  We started out doing slab on grade and what a pain in the butt.  We switched over to crawl space and what a difference it made.  Here are the problems we had with slab.  Everything is in the floor (ducts,plumbing, etc).  Once that floor is poured it is difficult to move.  If you decide to change anything down the line it is a major ordeal.  With a crawl space you can remodel in the future without any headaches.  I am now a contractor in Bismarck.  If you want to know more give me a call.  202-8429
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/25/2009 9:23 PM | Reply #10 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 02/17/2004
Location: ND
Good fishing advice.Why do they call tis website fishingbuddy?
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/25/2009 9:36 PM | Reply #11 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 12/17/2001
Location: ND
Good question. In the same vain, why is your handle "ditchrunner" and not "pissinyourcheeriosguy"?

Go witha crawlspace.

Berkely powercrawlers work as good as nightcrawlers (hows that for your fishing advice whine-o).
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/26/2009 07:30 AM | Reply #12 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 12/25/2008
Location: ND
I owned a small house on a slab. spring and fall i was adjusting doors, I had a 2 foot stub wall next to my patio door and in the fall i could stick my hand outside. My current house (moved in 24x32 1-1/2 story is on a wooden crawl space. a crawl space make wireing and plumbing alot easier. I live in the red river valley.
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/26/2009 07:40 AM | Reply #13 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 08/12/2003
Location: ND
IMO, SOG limits your resale to only folks incapable or unwilling to go into a crawl space.  You'd be giving away all that storage space (lord knows there's never enough of that) as well as making wiring and HVAC more or less permanent.

Why yes indeed I can walk on water..............but I do stagger on alcohol.

Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/26/2009 08:12 AM | Reply #14 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 08/26/2009
Location: ND
phatz Said:
RninND,
 
I am a contractor and I can tell you this.  About four years ago I was building twin homes in Grand Forks.  We started out doing slab on grade and what a pain in the butt.  We switched over to crawl space and what a difference it made.  Here are the problems we had with slab.  Everything is in the floor (ducts,plumbing, etc).  Once that floor is poured it is difficult to move.  If you decide to change anything down the line it is a major ordeal.  With a crawl space you can remodel in the future without any headaches.  I am now a contractor in Bismarck.  If you want to know more give me a call.  202-8429

Explain "in you words" why don't you work in GF anymore?
Re: slab on grade vs crawl space
by on 08/26/2009 08:16 AM | Reply #15 | "Quote" | "Quick Reply" |

Joined: 05/28/2002
Location: ND
The last home I built on the 100 year FP they required the bottom floor to be above the flood plain including the crawlspace.

I would never build slab on grade because of many of the already stated reasons.  Be sure you still insulate the 4' foundation and I would put a vapor barrier down made of virgin resins and cap the floor with  a 2" concrete slab, cuts cost and with a dozen or so river bottom homes I have never had any floor movement.

When you frame any bearing walls in the crawlspace create headered openings with the header being up in the truesses, buy a mechanics stool or bed and scoot around, which makes storage access even better.

Concrete floors are so unforgiving, whether a baby falls or you drop something, not to mention it is hard on your wifes feet, unless you do the cooking and dishes.
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Posted On: 08/25/2009 1:28 PM
2530 Views, 21 Comments

Tags: crawl, space, slab, grade, i'm, going, cement, flood, home, cosmetically
More Tags: cement slab, Disaster_Accident Environment
Region: Minnesota

Categories: Other > Other Off-Topic
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