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Building Practices: Foundation Type

When it comes to building a new home, the foundation is one of the most important aspects to consider. Choosing the right foundation type can ensure the longevity and stability of your new home. In this article, we will discuss the three most common foundation types: slab, stem wall slab, and crawlspace, and their benefits, pros, and cons.

Slab Foundation
A slab foundation is a solid concrete slab that is typically four to six inches thick and poured directly onto the ground. Slab foundations are a popular choice for new home construction because they are cost-effective and easy to install. Additionally, they require very little maintenance, making them an ideal choice for homeowners who don’t want to worry about foundation repairs.


  • Cost-effective
  • Low maintenance
  • Energy-efficient
  • Easy to install
  • Provides a level surface for flooring


  • Resistant to termites
  • Minimal risk of mold growth
  • No need for crawl space or basement


  • May not be suitable for homes in areas with high water tables
  • Difficult to access plumbing and electrical lines
  • Limited insulation options

Stem Wall Slab
Foundation A stem wall slab foundation is a combination of a slab foundation and a basement. It consists of a concrete slab poured onto a raised perimeter foundation wall, typically made of concrete blocks or poured concrete. Stem wall slab foundations are commonly used in areas with expansive soils.


  • Provides a stronger and more stable foundation
  • Offers better resistance to earthquakes
  • Prevents moisture penetration


  • Ideal for sloped lots
  • Easier access to plumbing and electrical lines than slab foundations
  • Better insulation options than slab foundations


  • Higher construction costs than slab foundations
  • Limited ceiling height in the basement
  • Higher maintenance costs

    Crawlspace Foundation
    A crawlspace foundation is a raised foundation that consists of a perimeter foundation wall and a series of piers or columns that support the floor joists. Crawlspace foundations are typically constructed in areas with a high water table or where soil conditions are unsuitable for slab or stem wall slab foundations.


  • Provides easy access to plumbing and electrical lines
  • Offers better ventilation and insulation options
  • Protects against moisture damage


  • Provides storage space
  • Allows for easy repairs and maintenance
  • Suitable for sloped lots
  • Air is natures best heat insulator


  • Higher construction costs than slab foundations
  • Requires regular maintenance to prevent & attention
  • More susceptible to pest infestations

Choosing the right foundation type for your new home build is critical to ensuring its longevity and stability. Each foundation type has its own benefits, pros, and cons, so it’s important to consider your specific needs and location before making a decision. Consult with a trusted builder or structural engineer to determine which foundation type is best for your new home. If you’re interested in building a new home, let Ivy Residential’s team of knowledgeable agents be a new construction source for you!

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