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What is the Average Cost to Repair a Foundation?

by Bobby Matthews on Apr 26, 2022

The most important part of any structure is the foundation, considering that it gives support to everything above it and ensures that the structure is kept stable. However, with time, the foundation can start developing issues as a result of weather changes, the house settling, or shifting. The deterioration of the foundation begins to manifest itself through cracks on the walls, sticking doors, and moisture problems among other signs. Not addressing these issues as soon as they are noticed can make things get worse, leading to the need for a new structure.

If you have noticed any sign of foundation issues in your home, one of the first questions you may want to find an answer to is “what does foundation repair cost?”, and that is what we will be addressing in this article.

Factors that determine the cost to repair a foundation

Calculating the cost of repairing a foundation is not a straightforward process as it depends on many factors. While there is a national average, costs can vary based on the cause of the damage, type of the foundation issue, the severity of the damage, repair method, materials, permits, home size, foundation settlement, soil stability, and labor. Some of these factors are explained below:

Cause of the Issue

Foundation issues are caused by several factors and they will vary from home to home. The repair method will in turn be determined by the cause of the issue and the type of foundation. All these factors will influence the cost of the repair. Common causes of foundation problems include cracks, leaks, soil erosion, crumbling, shifting, sinking, and bowing of the foundation. With the help of a professional structural engineer, the cause of the foundation issues can be determined.

Type and Severity of the Issue

If a foundation is not well-maintained or the soil on which it is built is compressible or not well-compacted, huge damage can be done to the home. When you start to notice cracks in walls or doors become harder to open and close, then it may be a sign that the foundation has settled. When these issues are left unattended for long, they get worse and cause irreparable damage to the property.

The cost of fixing these issues will be influenced by the severity of the damage and the foundation type in your home.

Labor, Permits, and Materials

When it comes to labor costs, most foundation repair contractors charge by the hour, the average being around $200 per hour. Of course, you will have to check with the foundation repair company you are hiring to do the job.

To repair your foundation, you will need to obtain the necessary permits. The average cost of these permits ranges from $75 to $150.

The cause of the problem is the major determinant of the materials to be used for the repairs. Some common materials include waterproofing items, jacks, hydraulic piers, polyurethane foam, epoxy, sealant, cement, grout, steel reinforcement strips, carbon fiber, steel support beams, etc. A foundation repair professional will let you know the materials that will be needed to fix your foundation. 

Foundation repair methods and their costs

One of the major factors that will determine the cost to repair a foundation is the repair method to be used. The following are some of the most common foundation repair techniques and how much they cost.

Reinforcing the foundation

Usually done at the same time as wall repair and window straightening, reinforcement costs between $700 and $5,000 per section. If you notice that your doors and windows are sticking or the walls are bowing, but with no sign of a sinking structure, what your foundation needs may just be reinforcement. 

By reinforcing your home’s structure, your home will be prevented from bowing, shifting, or crumbling. It will also enhance your home’s stability.

Underpinning

The cost of underpinning is influenced by the type of pier to be used and how many are required. The average cost of this foundation repair method is usually between $700 and $25,000. Underpinning is an effective method to fix a foundation with structural problems or a foundation that is sinking or settling.

The process involves sinking piers below the structure to hold it up. The average cost of a single pier is between $700 and $2,100. Piers are in their varieties, and your home may require more than one to fix the foundation, thereby increasing the cost.

Waterproofing

Waterproofing is an effective method that can be used to prevent damage to your basement and foundation caused by moisture seeping into them. The average cost of waterproofing is between $2,000 and $7,000. The cost can be on the low end of the range if only sealing is required.

There are cases where solving a foundation problem with frequent moisture and leaks will require a sump pump, thereby costing more. However, a full waterproofing system may not be needed for your moisture issue, and you won’t be spending so much.

House Leveling

Varying based on what will be used to level the house, you can expect to spend between $3,000 and $25,000 to level a concrete structure of 1,000 square feet. Mudjacking or foam jacking can be an effective means to save a structure that is sinking moderately. In this process, the structure is raised by pumping concrete or foam beneath it. The average cost is between $3 and $25 per square foot, and you won’t have to spend much if the area to be repaired is small.

Crack Repair

Foundation cracks can range from minor to significantly large ones. The minor ones are fairly simple to repair. The direction in which the cracks are running will determine the repair method and the cost. The cost of fixing vertical cracks is the lowest one, ranging between $350 and $2,000. What is required to fill vertical cracks are epoxy-based or polyurethane-based fillers, then followed by sealing – if necessary.

When it comes to repairing horizontal cracks, you may be spending as much as $4,000, varying based on the number of walls affected and the severity of the issues.

Based on the national average, the cost of fixing foundation cracks ranges from $350 to $4,000.  

Final Words

Foundation issues are best taken care of as soon as they are noticed to prevent them from getting worse. The factors that determine the cost of repair are many. Therefore, you may want to engage the service of a foundation repair professional to inspect your home, find the cause of the issue, let you know the method of repair to use, and give you an estimate of how much it would cost you.

You may want to refer to the Home Advisor’s cost guide to learn more about how much it would cost you to fix your foundation issue.

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