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Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

Posted by allyn12 (My Page) on
Sun, Nov 3, 13 at 8:42

Hi all-we are thinking of investing in a house that needs everything-foundation, floor leveling etc..... It was built in 1890, and the brick foundation is toast. We are interested in knowing if this can be done DIY. Or rather will have to be done DIY. Has anyone else done this? It is the one thing we have never done to a house. We are paying less than the value of the lot for this house.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

Other than it is not a DIY project, you might first ask a house mover what your house weights, what it will cost to rent the cribbing and the I beams (including delivery and pick up), or if they will.


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

Thanks, but many people have done this. Won't be renting cribbing as we are going to use the wood for another project-landscaping.


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

allyn12:

Because many people have done this doesn't mean you can or should. For example, cribbing is usually about 30" long or so. That's going to make some funny looking landscape timbers.

If you don't have the budget to have the house properly jacked and lowered onto the new foundation, perhaps you should pass. The most important thing here is to know what you don't know.


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

That isn't an "investment" house. That's a hungry money pit!

Some foundation repair can certainly be DIY. But jacking a whole house requires a great deal of experience to do safely and not injure the house. (Not to mention not injure yourself!) You can cause more damage than what you're trying to fix if you do it too rapidly, or use the wrong support points.


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

Believe me, no one is more anal or careful to do something correctly. I know all about raising slowly, etc.. I will have an engineer look at it first. The other thing that will happen is that the floors and ceilings are going to be removed to expose the framing. The cribs are going to be used for a small stepped hillside. They go into the ground vertically, not horizontally. Yes-pressure treated.


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

"The other thing that will happen is that the floors and ceilings are going to be removed to expose the framing."

And the loss of those two elements of diaphragm shear, will benefit you how.


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

I've built houses of all types of construction, remodeled in many others and I would NOT attempt to raise a house for foundation repair.

That job is in NO way a consideration for DIY. The expertise and equipment are expensive and requires large machinery to haul and use.

Might be worth hiring done, but very often a house needing extensive foundation repairs is not worth the money it takes to safely repair versus just tearing it down and building new.


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

I appreciate all the feedback. I am not sure what equipment you are referring to. The cost of materials will be an issue, but we are not using motorized hydraulics, if we do this. The walls and flooring will only be the wood floor and the plaster which is falling down anyway. All of the joists will remain in place. I had thought to put in temp walls to add support. My partner used to work for a company that raised houses. Thank you all for your concern.

This post was edited by allyn12 on Sun, Nov 3, 13 at 17:34


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

My family had a house raised professionally to have a proper foundation installed. It ended up like a "This Old House" episode, discovering additional problems like the rotted joists, subfloor, plates, etc. Despite all the care in lifting, etc., we still ended up with a fair amount of interior damage, such as wall & ceiling cracks. So when it was all said and done, it was over time and cost budget, and we had the same old vintage house. Waste of money.


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

"And the loss of those two elements of diaphragm shear, will benefit you how?"

Maybe you've got to be into construction or just have an appreciation of sarcasm, but that's funny right there.


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

Since you're only 'thinking of' investing in this house, I would say to keep looking.
We had a home that was raised, but we did more than just the foundation. We excavated and built another level under the house. We did everything else ourselves, along with helpers, but we would never consider raising a home on our own..........especially a 2 story house.

Sorry, but the fact your partner worked for a company that raised houses doesn't mean he has the knowledge and experience to tackle the job.
Moneywise, if you're down to just the original framing once you've replaced the foundation, then I agree with the others that you'll save in the long run by just tearing the whole thing down.
Keep in mind: what you'll pay for long beams and cribbing could buy a lot of framing material.


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

"Maybe you've got to be into construction "

Or lack there-of.

I also worked for and with a well respected CA. house mover, who elected to cease operations because of Gov. regulation and the subsequent increase in insurance.
Not an infrequent task was to lift single and multi-story dwellings to street level, to meet state regulations mandating compliance with the 100yr. flood plain, and all the while, fully occupied, accessed by a bridge.

The OP is sounding more and more like a "flipper."


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

The OP is sounding more and more like a "flipper."

Or a troll---asking about lifting and not giving all pertinent info---like partner working for a company that lifts houses.


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RE: Anyone raised a 2 story house? Just to redo foundation.

Doesn't sound like a good "investment" even if the house didn't have such substantial foundation issues. From a monetary expense, a house that only needs "everything" and is priced below the lot price sounds like a really good opportunity to do a teardown to build all new.

The only way I could see doing something like the OP is proposing is if the house is historic and eligible for grants to help with the renovation costs, AND is being looked at to be the primary residence of the OP after the 3 years of work on it are done. In other words, a big budget project for reasons other than an "investment". People who want to preserve history aren't flippers. They usually want to save or reproduce the unique features of the home, rather than ripping them all out in the name of "modernization" or "investing".


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