Improving the Interior and Exterior of Your Home

Questions You Might Ask About Restumping a Home

The term "restumping" has nothing to do with tree stumps on your property, but refers to the process of adding additional stumps or supports to the foundation of a home, or replacing rotted and cracked stumps. The process might also involve repair and replacement of floorboards and subfloor materials inside the home, if these have become damaged over time. Restumping can keep your home safe and level and help avoid cracks in the foundation and in the home's interior as well. If you think your home might need restumping, note a few questions you'll want to ask a contractor about the process overall.

1. Always ask about the materials they use for stumps

One reason that older homes need to be restumped is that they may have been set on wood stumps rather than brick or concrete. Wood will eventually rot, chip, crack, or otherwise start to weaken from the weight of the home and from being exposed to moisture. Concrete is best for restumping even though it may be more expensive and time-consuming to pour and shape concrete blocks and stumps under a home. 

Note too that the concrete should be poured onsite so that it hardens in place, and creates a firmer foundation than concrete posts that aren't poured into the soil under your home. Ask about the materials and processes a company uses to ensure you get a restumping job that will last.

2. Ask if they will secure the permits for you

Since restumping will involve digging under or around the foundation of your home and the work will affect the home's overall safety, you will typically need a permit for the job. However, rather than trying to figure the right agency that issues permits and finding the right permit to purchase, ask a contractor if they will secure the permits for you. This can make the job easier on you as they may know exactly which permit you need and where to get it before work begins.

3. Ask if they backfill their work

To restump a home, it's necessary for holes to be dug under the home's foundation and around the area that is already stumped. A contractor should then backfill this dirt they dig up and ensure your home's property is as clean as possible. In some cases, they may not be able to refill the holes with all the dirt they dig since the new stumps may take up more space than the old ones. Be sure you choose a contractor that will remove any excess dirt and who guarantees your property to be as clean as it was when they started work, rather than leaving it as your responsibility to remove any excess dirt.