If you are looking to build a home, then there are many things that you need to think through. The most important thing your home should do is protect your family. An essential part of that is to build it so that storms cannot easily harm it.
Start With a Strong Foundation
The first thing that you need to think about is your home’s foundation. Consider the type of soil where your home is to be built. You need to match your foundation style and your building materials to the soil type. Clay is especially challenging to build a foundation on because of the way that it expands when wet. Peat can be a significant fire danger during dry conditions. When wet, silt expands, putting pressure against your home’s foundation. When mixed, sand and gravel does not retain moisture, which makes it an ideal choice on which to build your home’s foundation. While it must be level, rock can be a good choice for under a foundation. Loam is also an excellent choice. You also need to think about what materials you should use to build your foundation. The outside needs to be waterproof so that water does not enter your home.
The next set of decisions that you should make is about your roofing. If you live in an area where the wind is often a problem, consider how the wind will hit your roof. Generally, circular roofs are considered the most wind resistant. If you are determined to have a rectangular or square roof, use a steep roof so that the wind will lift up and away. Roofs with little overhang are less likely to lift off during a hurricane.
There are many other benefits of metal roofing that make it an attractive option for homeowners. Metal roofs withstand most hailstorms very well. Even if you see dents in the roof, it is unlikely that the metal will break, so water cannot get underneath it. Consider metal roofing choices that are treated so that they help keep your building cooler.
Waterproofing Your Basement
The next set of decisions that you need to make is on waterproofing your basement. You will probably want to have a sump pump installed. Having a sump pump has many benefits. For example, if your basement ever floods, the water is quickly removed. Then, frame up the walls. The next step should be having an electrician run electricity throughout the area. If you are putting a bathroom in the basement, then get the pipes installed. The fun part happens next as you decide what areas of your basement you want to dedicate to different purposes. Then, you are ready to install drywall and paint the area.
Before continuing, stop and think about what the most significant weather threats are in your area. If tornadoes are a threat, then install a tornado shelter in your basement. If possible, the shelter should be placed away from exterior walls. Ensure that you use extremely strong building materials or that you buy a commercial tornado shelter. If flooding is more of a danger, put in a powerful sump pump. You should also have all electrical plugs at least four feet off the floor. Use waterproof drywall to help keep any moisture that gets through the foundation walls out of your home.
If hurricanes are a significant threat in your area, design your home with lots of curves as they allow the wind to go around your home. Make sure that your exterior walls are incredibly stout. Use windows that are designed to handle the impact of a hurricane. Consider using radial floor and roof spokes as they are more apt to stay in place during a hurricane. You may also want to think about connecting your home to a generator and using a solar-powered water heater.
Place Windows Correctly
Windows on the east and south sides of your home will let in the morning light without letting in the afternoon heat. Letting as much light into your home makes it look more beautiful and can help you feel better. Use the right type of window for your environment. If you live in a warm climate, consider windows that have awnings over them. Low-E, argon-filled, double-pane windows are an excellent energy-efficient choice. Triple pane windows are an outstanding choice in climates with harsh winters.
Choose Your Window Frames
Think about your window frames. Wooden frames transfer less heat into your home than metal ones. Wood windows, however, require more maintenance. Aluminum windows do not swell and shrink during rainy weather, and they are approved for use in regions that experience hurricanes. Vinyl windows offer energy savings while being budget-friendly.
There are at least three areas of your home that you need to think about insulating. The first area is the attic. Blown-in, loose-fill insulation is the best choice for attics that are irregularly shaped or where there are lots of objects to work around. You can also use batts, but make sure to choose the option matching your climate. Start out by putting a vapor barrier in place. You also should insulate the crawl space and the floor on the first level.
Pick the Right Exterior Material
You have many different choices in exterior building materials for your home. If you are looking for a low-maintenance option, consider siding. Alternatively, wood makes an excellent choice. Engineered wood gives homes a traditional look, and is stronger than timber. Some people prefer the look of brick.
There are many choices to be made when it comes to designing a home. You want to make sure that it stands the test of time, as well as the elements. Start with these fundamental decisions, and you will have a home that will protect your family well during a storm or any other natural phenomena. You will also have a home where everyone will feel comfortable and one that you will be proud to own.
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