PROVIDING HIGH QUALITY HOUSE PADS FOR RESIDENTIAL PROPERTIES IN HOUSTON, SPRING, THE WOODLANDS, MONTGOMERY, TOMBALL, MAGNOLIA & THE SURROUNDING CITIES.
The first and most important step in constructing a house is laying a solid foundation. The phrase “founded upon a rock” sums up how important this step is to the overall structural integrity of the house which directly affects the home’s longevity. In other words, to ensure your house will withstand the test of time, it must be built on a solid foundation that meets all specifications.
Another phrase, which is appropriate here is, “As strong as your weakest link.” Adhering to the specifications outlined by the Architect, structural Engineers and/or Geo Technicians will guarantee that your home will be anchored to a structurally sound base which adds real value to your investment. The money spent here to ensure a quality product will save you thousands in the long run.
Before construction activity starts at the project site, it is recommended that a final review be conducted. This review should include:
Approved blueprints signed off by all appropriate agencies
Engineer reports and specifications
All permits authorized by the City, County and/or State agencies
HOA approval letter(s) along with all documented regulations and guidelines.
Any and all documentation specific to your property
Conduct a final walk through with your land clearing/house pad contractor to insure the plans designed actually fit properly onto your lot. This is the time to double-check all stake measurements, soil test reports, HOA restrictions and requirements, pad layout and location as compared to your approved blueprints. Please note that the overall size of your house pad is always going to be larger than the dimensions of your floor plan. A five (5) or more foot extension is added to every exterior wall dimension to provide additional foundation support and to maintain any slopes produced by the recommended build up of the pad. Additional pad footage will need to be included in calculating the size of your pad site if any type of patio or walk way is going to be added to the basic design of your house.
THOROUGHLY CHECKING THE SITE, PRIOR TO CONSTRUCTION, ensures that all vegetation, drainage, grading or any other issues, within the flagged off house pad area, have been identified, marked and are included in your house pad construction plans. Locate and flag any easements and setbacks that need to be maintained so they can be easily detected once actual work has begun on your property. Mark any trees and other vegetation that you want to retain or have removed from your property site and MAKE SURE your contractor understands your intent. Do not assume that your contractor knows that the trees you have marked represent the trees you intend to keep. Your contractor may think the marked trees are the ones you want removed. DO NOT cut down any trees or grind any tree stumps, if located inside the perimeter of your proposed house pad site. The proper method to remove trees/vegetation located within the house pad area, is to extract the entire growth, including roots, with equipment like an excavator or dozer. The void left behind will be filled in and compacted when the actual build-up of the pad site begins.
If any part of a tree stump or its roots are left in the pad area, it will decompose over time, leaving an air pocket. This void becomes part of your foundation and will eventually cause the structural integrity of your house to fail. Remember…”Founded upon a Rock” brings value and equity to your investment instead of costly repairs and heartaches.
PREPARING THE HOUSE PAD SITE is the next step is actually clearing the property and preparing the house site for construction. This could be as simple as removing a few trees and shrubs to re-constructing the entire area. One very important element in lot preparation includes adhering to all soil and engineering reports. These reports take the data obtained from the test performed within the house pad site and determine what, if any, additional action(s) need to be taken to bring the site up to specs.
Scraping the pad site of spoiled soil before building up the house pad is a common practice. the amount of spoils to be removed can vary from a few inches to several feet, depending on how deep the sub-par materials lie. The spoils are scraped off with a dozer and placed in piles away from the pad site. Other steps in preparing the lot can include removing several layers of spoiled soils and replacing it with suitable soils for proper stabilization, removing a forest of trees and vegetative materials, removal or relocating other objects such as rocks and boulders, re-routing and/or creating drainage areas and site build up to meet specifications. Work closely with your contractor, geo-technician and engineer during construction, to effectively tackle each situation and guarantee a superior end result.
Time now to build the house pad. The actual construction of a house pad is done in “lifts”. Each lift consists of 4” to 6” of select fill dirt which is comprised of a 60/40 mixture of sand and clay. It is recommended that you have your contractor provide the select fill material required to complete your house pad. When the contractor provides all the materials as well as the labor, he becomes solely responsible if any of the compaction tests do not meet specifications. During this process, It is imperative that everyone adheres to the Geo-Technician’s report and that a Geo-Technician is on hand during the actual pad construction. The Geo-Tech will take the appropriate compaction tests during each phase of the pads construction to insure the stabilized select fill material being used is of the proper composition and packed properly. Any lift that does not meet the International Building Code (IBC) Board’s 95% moisture content requirement will be scraped off and re-built with new materials.
The number of lifts required to complete your house pad will be determined by the engineer and Geo-Tech reports.
Contact Llewellyn's Construction Today!
For more information on building a house pad, or to receive a free quote, contact Llewellyn's Construction at (281) 252-0127