Not all foundation repair companies are alike – the top 5 questions to ask before you do business with a foundation repair contractor

southerndry project plannerYour home is one of your biggest and most important lifetime investments, so if you’re worried that foundation repair bills might be in your future, it’s important to arm yourself with the right information from a trusted source. Industry authorities estimate that a worst-case scenario foundation restoration for an average sized home needing hydraulic piers installed along the perimeter can cost as much as $35,000. On the other hand, repairs for small cracks or superficial settling may only run you a few hundred dollars.

According to a recent Home Advisor survey of 2,600 customers, the typical Alabama homeowner can expect to pay around $8,500 to get their foundation back in “like new” condition. The national average runs a little over $9,200 according to the same survey, but it’s important to keep in mind that not everyone pays this much. Your actual repair bill will vary depending on the age and location of your home, and your local soil and climate profile.

Regardless of the cost, what matters most is to feel confident that the estimate you get is honest, complete, a good value, and that it includes the materials and methods that make the most sense for the overall condition of your home. You want a repair solution that not only takes care of the immediate need, but also ensures that your house will stay structurally sound for years to come, no matter what happens with the weather or surrounding soil.

Correcting foundation problems

All homes and foundation types will settle over time. The amount of settling will vary, even among houses in the same neighborhood, depending on a few basic factors:

  • The soil types underneath the house, and how much they expand and contract
  • The amount of natural groundwater nearby and how it interacts with your foundation
  • Seasonal moisture changes like rain, runoff, drought, or flooding
  • How the ground was prepared and graded prior to construction
  • The materials and methods used to build the structure

Any of these things (or the wrong combination of them) can put too much strain on your foundation, or cause support to fall away from underneath it. Over time, the results show up as odd structural faults like tilted floors, sagging exterior concrete, irregular cracks, bowed basement walls, or doors and windows that gradually drift out of alignment and start to stick.

If you see any of these classic signs of foundation problems, there’s no need to panic, but it is important to get a professional evaluation sooner rather than later. Although many repairs can be done very inexpensively, things can get worse if left unaddressed for too long. Here are a few of the top corrective measures that experienced foundation specialists use:

  1. Basement repair – When most of the foundation is structurally sound, bowed basement walls can often be straightened independently with reinforcement technology. This not only corrects existing damage, but also helps to resist future shifting and buckling. Options include tiebacks, anchors, carbon fiber straps, epoxy crack injections and wall braces.
  2. Helical piers – For foundations problems that are larger, or more spread out across your property, helical piers are the best solution. They’re preferred by reputable foundation repair companies and recommended by several engineers for their versatility, durability, and cost benefit. Helical piles can be installed along the perimeter as well as interior of the home’s foundation.
  3. Crawl Space Repair – Sagging floors can be recovered by replacing damaged crawl space support stations with stronger, more durable steel posts that can be adjusted.

5 important questions to ask your foundation repair contractor before you sign

Before you sign any repair contract, be sure that the repair expert you’ve chosen can give you satisfactory answers to these important qualifying questions:

  1. How many jobs do you typically have going at one time? You want your contractor to be big enough to demonstrate the experience and skill to do a great job, but not so big that you get lost in the shuffle. Many companies push volume over customer service.
  2. What happens if I have a question or a problem while repair is underway? Companies that are family or employee-owned have a personal stake in your satisfaction. You want a repair specialist who responds quickly to issues and relies on customer reviews to build their reputation.
  3. What repair methods can you offer and which ones do you recommend? Your foundation repair expert should put your budget and long term needs above their sales goals. Make sure they can back up their recommendations with actual field observations.
  4. Do you offer warranty protection? The best foundation repair companies will give you a transferable warranty that will stay with your home if you sell it. This can be a big differentiator in the real estate market, besides the immediate peace of mind you get.
  5. Does your company offer payment plans? Your home is one of the most precious lifetime investments you’ll ever make, and maintaining it should be affordable. Reputable foundation repair companies that are confident that their work will last will have no reservation helping you set up a payment plan for bigger jobs.

Alabama homeowners choose SouthernDry over “big box” companies because we’re obsessed with quality and customer satisfaction. We give you one-on-one attention from the initial estimate to final clean-up at the end of the job. This is our family business, so our reputation is on the line with every repair. We’ll answer your questions and stick with you until the job is done to your satisfaction.

Call us today for a free professional consultation about your individual foundation situation.

 

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Donnie Payne
Donnie Payne
2021-02-18T21:24:38+0000
These guys do a great job. They are responsive to phone calls and highly recommend.
Garland Culbreath
Garland Culbreath
2020-10-24T13:55:38+0000
Jonathan was great with our quote and answering all our questions. They were amazing working with us to get our project... underway. The crew was fantastic... very professional, super kind, and explained our system to us in great detail before wrapping up the job. Our hardwoods had started cupping from humidity. Since Southern Dry completed our project, a little over a month ago...our floors have settled back as they should and our crawl space looks pristine. We would highly recommend Southern Dry. Great service, great work, great warranties.read more
Danny Hillis
Danny Hillis
2020-03-17T05:45:04+0000
I have worked for several foundation company's in north Al afs included and I must say I like the way John does... business he goes to no limit to make sure his customers get the working system they were promised. southern dry will always be my 1st and only choice for repairs.read more
Kristy Howell
Kristy Howell
2020-01-22T19:30:16+0000
They were very prompt in coming to my home and giving me an estimate. The price was lower than other estimates. The... work was professional and completed in one day. They also provided financing options. I would highly recommend Southern Dry to anyone looking to repair their foundation.read more
Ramsay Young
Ramsay Young
2019-12-06T18:50:55+0000
Very professional group from the estimate to the installation. Kept me informed all the time. the installers were great... with no disruption. Very pleasedread more
KarlaJohnson Bullock
KarlaJohnson Bullock
2019-11-28T01:46:16+0000
Very efficient and hard working men. They go out of their way to make sure the customer is satisfied. I highly... recommend this company. KB. Glencoe, Alread more
Meredith Smildsin
Meredith Smildsin
2019-11-26T18:40:07+0000
Fantastic customer service and high quality workmanship! The team at SouthernDry was great from start to finish. Came... out for a free estimate, presented recommendations, assisted with financing, worked around my busy schedule, and got the job done QUICKLY! Work crew was professional and efficient. Highly recommend!!read more
Valerie Dawson Miles
Valerie Dawson Miles
2019-10-07T16:52:07+0000
I highly recommend Southern Dry and their crew. They are very responsive and do a great job. I truly appreciated the... way they kept me informed of when they would be arriving, the expected timeline of the job and when then when job was complete. Each person I interacted with throughout the process from beginning to end was professional and courteous. 5 Stars.read more
Daniel Hutcheson
Daniel Hutcheson
2019-09-29T21:30:42+0000
SouthernDry came by the house and answered all of the questions and concerns that we had about our house. They... presented multiple solutions and helped us choose the best one for us. The crew that installed all components were very professional and courteous. Kudos to SouthernDry also saved us a lot of money.read more
Brad Wright
Brad Wright
2019-09-10T17:01:30+0000
Everyone was great. The owner is super nice and worked with me on a lot of things. The crew was great. Definitely... treated like family. A++ all around.read more
Caleb Danley
Caleb Danley
2019-09-09T21:47:06+0000
Excellent service, excellent product, excellent people. Very reliable company with great communication. I would... recommend this company to anyone. 10/10read more
Caren Stone
Caren Stone
2019-07-05T19:51:20+0000
I am so pleased with the waterproofing Southern Dry did for my basement and den area. When I asked the team to cover a... large portion of sheeting of the wall that was not covered in their quote, they did it free of charge. upon completing the work, the crew cleaned up the construction debris meticulously. All the crew men were professional and pleasant and answered all the questions I posed during the process. Definitely 5 stars earned.read more
Nelden Smith
Nelden Smith
2019-05-25T13:52:06+0000
Very fast, very good--and they were very willing to work with me to find a solution that met all my needs without going... over my budget! Thanks John, Calvin, and Russ, for your customer service and offering such a nice quality product.read more
Kathy Morris Ryan
Kathy Morris Ryan
2019-04-23T01:21:20+0000
I am very satisfied with the work these guys did with the foundation of my house. It was a great experience from... Calvin's inspection and quote to the guys that did all the work. Great group and I highly recommend them.read more
Kennedy Todd Davis
Kennedy Todd Davis
2019-04-16T20:06:14+0000
Very professional! They got the job done quick and cleaned up and didn’t leave anything behind!
Bob Curry
Bob Curry
2019-04-09T21:29:13+0000
Very professional company and the work performed was first rate. I would highly recommend this company and I highly... recommend having your crawl space properly sealed and a dehumidifier installed. I had check pricing from several different companies in my area that do this kind of work and they were the most reasonable. I live in Alexandria AL which is in the deep South with very humid weather. I had some serious moisture damage this fall with mold forming from a clogged HVAC unit under my house. Water was puddling onto the plastic under my house, I was not aware of this and it had been going on for several months. By the time I discovered it the damage had already been done to my house flooring. Thank goodness the homeowners insurance covered the floor repair to the tune of $30,000. I wanted to make sure this would never be an issue again even if I had some kind of water leak. They completely clean out all the old plastic, vacuumed the under side of the flooring and removed any construction trash from under the house and then properly sealed my crawl space. My dehumidifier has an app that I can check anywhere in the world and see my temp and humidity levels under my house. There is also a water sensor installed so if water is detected, it will send me a message.I could not be happier and it was worth every penny!read more
Eddie Wendy Akers
Eddie Wendy Akers
2019-03-19T14:56:33+0000
Great company. Good communications. Gteat job. No problems
Dona Warnick Jones
Dona Warnick Jones
2019-03-15T15:58:28+0000
Southern Dry was very easy to work with during the encapsulation process. Luckily I did not have foundation damage but... my house needed french drains, sump pump, dehumidifier and the crawl space encapsulated. The job was completed as promised and I am very satisfied with the end product. The entire crew was professional and efficient. I recommend Southern Dry.read more
Rita Murphy Lueth
Rita Murphy Lueth
2019-03-15T01:52:12+0000
Southern Dry was responsive an professional from start to finish, from the moment I phoned them, through the... installation process, and through follow-up phone calls. The workers showed up on time on the scheduled day, completed the work efficiently, cleaned up, and left. I would definitely recommend them.read more
John King
John King
2018-08-15T11:29:36+0000
Very courteous and professional. They were 50% less than a estimate I received from a competitor. Great communication... and speedy installation!!!!!read more
Jay Watts
Jay Watts
2018-08-13T12:56:16+0000
Very professional.
Amy Lambrecht
Amy Lambrecht
2018-08-08T17:13:46+0000
From start to finish, Southern Dry treated me as a customer with courteous responsiveness. They answered all my... questions, made practical recommendations (without the up-sale in mind) gave references that had glowing praises all around. The workers were neat and efficient with their time. It made the whole process smooth and pain free.read more
David Johnson
David Johnson
2018-06-16T13:16:45+0000
Everyone I spoke with from Southern Dry was top notch. I prefer doing business with people who are average, regular,... down-home folks trying to make an honest living. If you're like me and want someone straight up to give you a reasonable quote on your repairs, call Calvin. They were fast, gave me a date to begin, started that morning early and did a fantastic job. Juan was the foreman on my project and if I had a question he had an answer for me. He was extremely nice and knowledgeable about what was being fixed and done. I was never left in the dark about anything. I had some pretty major foundation issues on one side of my newest house. The back sill plate was rotten and the floor was sagging from no support in the rear. Juan and the crew installed 6 piers, replaced the sill plate, cleaned the crawlspace completely, installed 5 jack supports, encapsulated it all and installed a dehumidifier and battery back up, and made me a 2 new doors in 3 days! So Calvin, Russ, John, Juan, and the other crew, thank you for a job well done. The house looks a million times better! I really appreciate it!read more
Dustin Hughes
Dustin Hughes
2018-05-30T17:49:10+0000
Very fast, very good--and they were very willing to work with me to find a solution that met all my needs without going... over my budget! Thanks John, Calvin, and Russ, for your customer service and offering such a nice quality product.read more
Rob Mackintosh
Rob Mackintosh
2018-05-24T21:44:39+0000
Entire team was very professional. They were excellent at communicating what needed to be done. They were always on... time and let you know every step of the process. There was no high pressure sales techniques. They give you the quote and you can start on your timeline. Just call them when you are ready. I got quotes from the more widely advertised foundation repair companies as well and SouthernDry gives you the same product and same warranty at a great price. They worked hard to work around the landscaping. They also did an excellent job of cleaning up. I highly recommend them.read more
Stephanie Stephens
Stephanie Stephens
2018-05-13T14:54:49+0000
Great customer service. Guys that came out to complete the job worked fast and communicated each step of the process.
Nadder Fawaz
Nadder Fawaz
2018-03-21T02:23:50+0000
Forgive me for the long review, but great service is hard to find these days. When it’s found, it should be... celebrated. John and his crew were incredible from day 1. Water was pooling in our crawl space on a new construction and we were eager to have it resolved quickly to avoid the formation of mold and spores and potential health hazards for our family. John came out immediately and assessed the situation, explained all the issues, and developed a plan. We had a guaranteed price in our hands within minutes; fair middle road pricing for extremely high quality work. Many estimates came in 2x higher, just fyi. There was plenty of trash and construction debris left under the house from the contractors; SouthernDry crew removed every piece of debris and leveled out the ground before installing the drains and pumps and encapsulation material. John and his crew returned a week later because they wanted to make a modification to the system that they believed would be more efficient. I would have never known the difference, but because they care about the quality of their work, they made the modifications to ensure the efficiency and longevity of the system. After a month, I finally made it back to the far corner under the house and noticed water pooling under the encapsulation in one area. One phone call and 24 hours later, the crew showed up, assessed the situation and implemented the necessary modifications, installing additional drainage at no additional cost to me. Using SouthernDry was the easiest and best decision we made!read more
Sable Mayfield
Sable Mayfield
2018-03-15T18:52:46+0000
Denise Patty Etter-Collins
Denise Patty Etter-Collins
2018-02-20T23:02:51+0000
They were prompt, thorough and curteous. Prices were the best. I would highly recommend a conversation and inspection,... at the very least.read more
Jerry Wayne Rich
Jerry Wayne Rich
2018-01-22T20:42:59+0000
The initial estimate was entirely too high. they wanted more money than afs. then, after review the owner came out... himself and gave me a second estimate that was reasonable. im looking forward to doing business with this company.read more
Clyde Mills
Clyde Mills
2017-07-06T00:18:24+0000
I have had the total encapsulation for one week now, I am proud to say my relative humidity in my house now stays... around 38-40%, I have actually had to raise my thermostat due to it feeling so much cooler and comfortable in my house with the lower humidity levels. I called around and compared prices and Southern Dry was by far the least expensive and the personable and easy to work with. And my crawlspace is dry as a bone. If you have moisture problems or high humidity in your home I would definitely recommend giving John Kabel with Southern Dry a callread more
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