Why Buildings Need Foundations


I’m more amazed that Texas seems to have NO basements, while here up north every house has a basement. Basements are soooo useful, yet for a relatively minor cost Texas doesn’t have any.


On the other hand, drive through many freeway intersections in Texas and you will notice those floodwater gauges in the dips, so that drivers can know that the depth of water ahead is 1 foot, 3 foot, as much as 9 feet!

Perhaps the risk of basement flooding in Texas makes basements less useful there?


Haven’f driven enough in Dallas to notice that. But they DO seem to have very real water run-off ditches. Unlike the LA one, which seems to mostly be a setting for Hollywood to stage yet another unrealistic car chase, the ones in Dallas carry real water often.

Still one would think you could build a decent basement with a bit of engineering.


Bit of a mix of slab and basement styles here around Atlanta. Optional in this climate, and groundwater isn’t usually a problem. When I was house hunting two decades ago, new houses “with” versus “without” differed by about $25k in my size range (~ 2500 sq. ft.). Many people just don’t want to pay the premium.


Yes but it costs in the long run as you have much less storage space.

Years ago when I lived in Austin I assumed it was due to the limestone.

Texas being, as the natives say, is big so I guess this wouldn’t apply to the entire state.

I do think basements are more expensive per square foot versus a garage. With the decent weather, I am guessing in less populated areas where the land value is reasonable, they just add garage space.

I looked on the inter webs and it says

East Texas soil is a clay that expands with moisture.
The water table is as shallow as 10 ft
Limestone tough to dig.