You know you have a foundation settlement issue with your pier and beam home. All the foundation repair company websites you have visited so far scream *don’t wait another second* on getting your repairs done and it feels like a sales scare tactic.
You’re wondering . . . hmmm . . . could there be a reason I might want to hold off on repairs instead of blindly following someone who’s trying to sell me their services?
At Anchor Foundation Repair, we don’t “sell” services. Rather, we help people with their homes when they are ready for foundation repairs. After 35+ years serving Bryan, College Station, and surrounding Brazos Valley communities like Brenham and Navasota, we find that honesty truly is the best policy.
So, yeah . . . there are a few reasons you might want to wait on getting your pier and beam foundation repaired. We’ve identified 5 good reasons you might want or need to delay the foundation repair process rather than jumping in with both feet and your eyes closed. Let’s dive in and get the *real dirt* on this issue.
Can I Wait to Repair My Pier and Beam Foundation?
CAN you wait on foundation repairs? Well, sure you can wait on just about any repairs. But maybe what you are really asking is “Is it safe to wait on foundation repairs?” And the answer is still, well sure.
In the vast majority of cases in Central Texas residential homes, it’s okay and safe to wait on getting repairs done. Foundation settlement issues take many years to develop and waiting a year or two is not going to make a huge difference for most homes.
We have only seen 2 or 3 homes out of tens of thousands since 1985 that were unsafe to live in. And the problems those homes had were not even due to the typical cause of foundation problems. We’ve got a more detailed article on this topic if you’re interested: “Is It Safe to Live in a Home with Foundation Settlement or Problems?”
Are There Reasons I Should Wait on Pier and Beam Repairs?
We’ve got a list of 5 practical reasons you might want to wait or should wait to get started on repairs. Here’s the shortlist:
- You are expecting to remodel within 2 to 3 years.
- Things aren’t bothering you that much.
- You just moved into the home.
- You want to have time to save up money for the repairs.
- Conditions under your home are wet or you have poor drainage.
These reasons to wait on pier and beam repair are all very different, so let’s explore each one in a bit more detail.
1. Remodeling In 2 to 3 Years
It’s always best to level your home just prior to remodeling. That way, the structure is in its most perfect and level state when you begin putting many new finishes on the home. A house in stable condition gives you the best chance for lasting results of your remodel work.
Instead of doing pier and beam foundation repairs now, take the time to save funds for the foundation work AND all your fabulous remodel dreams. Then, plan to have your home leveled right before the renovations.
2. Not Bothered by Issues
Deciding when the time is right for foundation repair is somewhat dependent on your feelings about the problems. If things are not bothering you all that much, then it’s probably not that big of a deal.
You’ve just got early signs of settlement that are more cosmetic and don’t cause anything to not work right. You don’t mind a little rattle in the floor or that one crack in the bedroom that nobody sees but you.
When you start to feel dissatisfied, angry, deeply annoyed, distressed, or embarrassed daily by the signs of foundation settlement you see in your pier and beam home, THEN it’s time to get going on repairs. Until that time comes, enjoy your serenity. But watch for changes that might tip the scales from “not bothered” to “quite bothered.”
3. Just Moved In
When you have just moved into a “new to you” home, you don’t really have a great perspective on what truly bothers you and what doesn’t. You also might change your mind on things as you live in the home, OR things might change seasonally with the home while you are there.
Something that you didn’t notice when you moved in becomes an issue. Another thing that you hated when you first got there has now become an endearing bit of “character” that you adore.
Expansive clay soils are reactive to moisture conditions, and so are pier and beam houses. If you moved in during a drier time, things might seem unacceptable. But then as it rains more through the year, the issue that initially worried you has improved.
Give it at least a full calendar year in your pier and beam home to allow yourself and the home to get to know one another better. Then, decide what’s right for the foundation with some historical perspective in your pocket.
4. Save Up Money
Pier and beam foundation repair costs are not typically as expensive as slab foundation repair, but that doesn’t mean it’s a minor expense either. Many homeowners would rather avoid debt and have the opportunity to save up funds to pay for foundation repair (or any repairs for that matter).
If you know that repairs are needed eventually, you can get an estimate for house leveling now. Then take time to save money to pay without having to take out a loan or use a credit card. Just remember that you might need to save up a little more than the original bid because labor and material costs tend to increase when you wait.
5. Wet Conditions/Poor Drainage
The first four reasons to wait on your pier and beam foundation repair fall into the “choice” category, meaning you can choose to wait for a year or save up money. Waiting because of wet conditions and/or poor drainage is not really up to you.
When it’s very rainy for longer periods of time, it’s a horrible time to work on a pier and beam home. A foundation repair crew can’t work effectively in the mud and can’t properly stabilize or level your home in wet weather conditions. Everyone has to wait until it stops raining.
Even if it hasn’t rained in a while, let’s say you have a poor drainage situation under your home where it stays kinda soggy all the time. You will need to solve your drainage problem before you can solve your pier and beam foundation problem.
Poor drainage can be a big cause of foundation issues in a crawlspace home too. Drainage problems really need to be addressed first to minimize opportunities for future settlement and set you up for the longest-lasting foundation repair.
When Is the Right Time for Pier and Beam Foundation Repairs?
Now you know some legitimate reasons that it’s okay to postpone foundation repairs for your crawlspace home (or really any types of foundations). You might wonder a bit more about how to know *for sure* if the time is right for repairs.
Anchor Foundation Repair has been inspecting and repairing pier and beam and slab-on-grade foundations in the Brazos Valley since 1985. We encourage homeowners to use some F-words to help you decide when it’s time to repair. Hahaha no. . . not that word. . . although that one may come up naturally.
Home functionality and homeowner feelings are the two greatest factors that can help you know for sure that it’s time to get to fixin’ your foundation. Check out this article next, Foundation Settlement Confirmed: When Is The Time Right for Repairs?