Are you worried about the crawl space under your home? Is it
- Critter Inhabited?
- And Does it Really Matter?
Perhaps more than other folks, we here at Anchor Foundation Repair know better than anyone why having a clear crawl space is a good idea. We do spend a lot of time in them after all . . . what with house leveling and foundation repairing here in the Brazos Valley for 35+ years and whatnot.
This article will offer up the top 6 reasons to seriously consider maintaining a clean crawl space foundation and how it benefits you. Then we will explain a few options to get your crawl space de-cluttering accomplished.
How Clean Should My Crawl Space Be?
Just how clean are we suggesting your crawl space should be? A crawl space should be tidy and free from clutter. It doesn’t have to be sanitized with bleach or anything. You don’t need to go down there with a vacuum cleaner. We’re not even talking about getting everything lined in plastic as they do with crawl space encapsulation.
We’re just talking about general neatness here.
We know that with older homes things tend to mysteriously accumulate in crawl spaces. Or maybe you’ve never even laid eyes on the area since buying your home. It’s okay, we’re not going to judge or hold it against you if your crawl space isn’t spic and span.
A neat and orderly crawl space is just an ideal to work towards as a way to optimize and maintain your pier and beam home’s condition as best you can. It’s one of those things I value as a homeowner myself. It’s a *nice to have* but certainly not a *need to have*. I’ll fill you in on the benefits and let you decide if you want this for your home too.
Top 6 Benefits of Keeping a Crawl Space Clear
Now you’re thinking, well how does a cleared-out crawl space *optimize* my home’s condition?? Let’s go over the biggest benefits of keeping your crawl space clean to give you some motivation to work towards the goal of tidying things up down there.
A neat and clean crawl space is:
- Easier to evaluate and inspect for problems (i.e. leaks, settlement, or excess moisture),
- Easier to access and care for with preventative maintenance,
- Less conducive to termite infestation and damage,
- Less inviting for critters of all kinds,
- Safer by keeping away the dangerous critters (snakes, scorpions, spiders), and
- Sometimes necessary for big system overhaul work (foundation repair, plumbing)
With a tidy crawl space, you can view and access the area better. When you can easily see the clutter-free area, you’re more likely to catch developing issues early on and are more inclined to perform needed maintenance.
You can spot problems, and (here’s the important part) handle them sooner, before deteriorating damage can take hold. Whether it’s diverting drainage, improving ventilation, getting pest control, or doing a significant system overhaul, your crawl space and home will stay in better condition if you keep tabs on the situation under your home and take action when necessary.
3 Ways to Get Your Crawl Space Cleaned Out
You’ve got a few options to get your crawl space tidied up, it’s not work that requires a lot of skill or expertise, just willingness.
Option 1: Do It Yourself
There’s the DIY method if you’re feeling ambitious and have nothing more appealing to do with your weekend. You’ll want trash bags, gloves, goggles, masks, a flashlight or headlamp, and a dose of determination. Better add some coveralls to your list of supplies too . . .
Agility and a little fearlessness will help you out as well. Crawl spaces are often hard to move around in with low clearance. You can come across some scary things in crawl spaces too.
Be sure to take safety precautions to protect yourself! Dealing with things like errant insulation, standing water, agitated animals, and untold substances is nothing to take lightly. But if you think you can do it, I support your noble efforts.
Option 2: Hire Someone
Hiring a handyman, day laborer, or the teenager down the street is another option to get your crawl space clean. The hard part about this is finding someone who will do this fairly unpleasant job. There are not usually companies or contractors that *just* clean out crawl spaces as their specialized service.
It could be a problem just locating someone, *anyone*, who will do this work for you. But if you do find someone, the cost could range from $500 to $2,000 or more. The price will depend on how much mess is in your crawl space along with the ease of access and clearance.
Option 3: Get Some Other Major Work Done Under Your Home
Let’s say you need to get your pier and beam house leveled with foundation work. Or maybe you are getting a bunch of other repairs done under your home with plumbing, drainage, or perhaps even HVAC work. Whoever you hire may have to clean out your crawl space just to get started on their *actual* work.
Sometimes the only way for a contractor to get the other work done (and make it safe for them as well) is to clear all that junk out of the way first. That’s what we do anyway . . .
Does Your Crawl Space Foundation Need Leveling Too?
If you happen to need foundation work on your Brazos Valley pier and beam home, you’re in luck. Anytime that Anchor is leveling a crawl space home, we want to do our job in a safe and efficient manner. That means we’re going to clear out that cluttered area before we get started. We simply call it *job prep* and it’s what’s best for everyone.
Now, we only do this for homes where we are doing foundation repairs as well. It’s not a stand-alone service that we offer. You’ll have to try option 1 or 2 if all you need is your crawl space cleaned.
At Anchor Foundation Repair, we’ve been helping homeowners solve their under-home problems since 1985. If you need house leveling for your pier and beam or crawl space home, we’re the ones to call in the Brazos Valley – and as a bonus, you’ll get your crawl space straightened up too.
How do you know if your home needs leveling? Check out this article to understand the top signs and symptoms (as well as the confusing ones) that mean your crawl space home could use some foundation work: The Complete Picture Guide to Pier and Beam Foundation Problem Signs.