Puddles in the yard, start worrying

by Stickywire on Monday April 23, 2012

If you are shopping for a new home in the spring, watch for puddles in the yard. Silly advice when all you are interested in is the inside of the house? Not if you know how much it costs to regrade a property or repair a flooded basement.

Puddles in the yard after a rain or thaw could mean a grading problem. This means your property-to-be slopes toward and not away from the dwelling, causing water to flow toward the house. Water could enter your basement through the foundation or window wells and frames. Concrete is not waterproof and water will find a way in if it is allowed to sit next to a foundation for any length of time.

Moisture in the home and, particularly, in the basement will cause a variety of ills including stained walls, floors and ceilings, mould, rot, bad smells and poor air in the home. Moisture also costs a lot of money to remedy with solutions like ripping out great swaths of drywall, replacing wood studs and beams and digging out and resealing foundations.

To avoid flooding, a property should be graded with at least a five degree slope away from the dwelling. To check the slope, measure the ground six feet from the foundation of the building; it should be three inches lower than the ground at the house.

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