Preparing the site
Before you can start building your house the block must be prepared. Obviously any trees that are standing where the house will go must be removed, but you should also think of other trees that might threaten the house. Now is the time to cut down trees which are unhealthy or healthy trees which could fall on the house in a storm. Keep in mind that some insurance companies will pay for the damage caused by a naturally falling tree, but not for damage which happens when a tree is being cut down, so it is best to have that type of work done before starting the house.
If a tree is removed because it is where the house will be placed, the stump and large roots will be taken out. This activity weakens the ground significantly and it would be a mistake just to fill the hole then place the concrete slab on top because the ground will subside. All of the disturbed ground must not only be filled but also thoroughly compacted.
It is an excellent plan to think about where water will run during heavy rain. A house roof collects a large amount of water and concentrates the run-off into the small areas where the downpipes end. What will happen to it then? In a storm will it be able to run away from the house quickly or will it collect and cause problems? If your house floor is raised on stumps will the water run under the house and erode the soil around the stumps? Once you know exactly where your house will be on the block it is time to deal with these issues and make sure that water will drain away from the house on all sides. Making sure the house is high enough that water will not rise to the level of the floor in extreme conditions is vital. Asking neighbors who have lived in the area for a long time can save a great deal of trouble later.
Occasionally you will want an all-weather driveway on your land so that you have access for your vehicle. There are big advantages in installing a driveway before any work is started on the house. You may not want to install the final driveway at this stage for fear of it being damaged, but a driveway of crushed rock or similar material will be an excellent investment. During the project some heavy vehicles will need not only to get on the block, but also to get off it again. Drivers will refuse to go on the site if they think they will get stuck, and this is a particular worry on a block that slopes down from the road.
This set of four articles has outstanding preparation that must be done before starting work on building a house. If this preparation is done thoroughly it will be an auxiliary help in setting up a project that will proceed calmly and efficiently. If not, there are very likely to be unnecessary delays, stress, and extra expense that can spoil the satisfaction in building your own home, and could even cause the dream to be abandoned.
Source by David J Ainge