The most common defect I find on homes is improper grading. Improper grading is when the landscape contour or some other element near the foundation doesn’t effectively carry rain water away from the foundation. This can be a huge problem because it can cause damage to the foundation and allow moisture into the basement or crawlspace. Another example of poor drainage and grading is exterior basement window bulkheads that don’t have some type of a cover on them. It’s true that newer houses may have drainage down in that bulkhead, but I don’t trust those drains and it’s also important to remember that some of them drain into the sump pit which may not have a pump to get rid of that water in the basement. Here’s a couple of grading tips:
- Proper grading that runs downhill away from the house is super important. It’s even more important in older homes that already have weak foundations.
- Cover basement bulkheads
- Install and maintain gutters with proper downspout extensions