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Find foundation, underpinning and piling experts

Foundations, underpinning and piling are complex, technical services that require the knowhow of specialist groundworkers and engineers. More than any other part of your home, it pays to invest in solid foundations, so find a professional you can trust today.

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Take a look at our Underpinning / Piling / Foundations specialists profiles, read reviews and request quotes directly.

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SB Construction

Underpinning / Piling / Foundations

We are a small company based in Sunderland,we cover all building work including extensions,loft conversions,kitchens,bathrooms and full refurbs

Latest homeowner review

Reviewed by Neil on 1/10/2020

After several quotes and careful consideration we decided to go with SB Construction. Before making our decision Steve was always available to answer any questions I had relating to the build. Couldn’t be more pleased with the work that has been undertaken by Steve and his lads. Special mention must go to his plumber who’s name escapes me but he’s a credit to Steve’s business. We’ve already recommended Steve to two of our friends and wish him and his business all the luck going forward.

we work hard with dedication to get the job done, and done right the first time. We have fast and friendly service our prices are reasonable and affordable.Our expertise are in home remodeling, electrical, plumbing, bathroom, kitchen,Tiling, flooring,....

Latest homeowner review

Reviewed by Sue on 30/9/2020

Quick and reliable

MH Design And Build LTD was formed in 2013. Based in Rotherham, we service Doncaster, Sheffield and other South Yorkshire areas. Nothing is more important to us than our reputation which is why we are a reliable, friendly and customer-driver contractor. Our ethos is fantastic customer service, quality workmanship and highly-competitive rates. We have a number of extremely professional and skilled tradesmen that we employ. As a company we have a combined total of 30 years experience from loft conversions to extensions and new builds.

Latest homeowner review

Reviewed by Peter on 2/11/2019

I needed a house re-rendering and MH Design & Build was excellent. Reliable, reasonable, dealt with the inevitable snags with skill, recommended Parex, which has made the house look like new - definitely recommended based on my experience.

Here at Banga Decoration General Builder we welcome the chance to work with you on your project we have over 11 years experience within the building trade and are well respected within the area. Our skilled tradesmen are more than willing to go the little bi

Latest homeowner review

Reviewed by Anjeli on 12/2/2019

Excellent communication, perfect timing and very hard working individual. Made me feel at ease and explained things clearly as I don’t understand many building terms etc. Strong Work ethic and very honest/reasonable prices. Gets straight to the point , goes out of his way to help and even supported me with Extra bits that needed doing Very highly recommended- thank you!

Our residential team can cover areas such as overall building construction, landscaping, patio, driveways, fencing, lighting & technology, and groundworks. We treat your home just if was ours! We provide our customers with the highest standard an quality we possibly can. Check feedback from our customers. Get in touch today with our friendly team!

Latest homeowner review

Reviewed by Ian on 2/9/2020

Nathan and his team worked quickly and efficiently together as a good team. Their standard of work was good. Although they did not arrive when expected, they finished in the allotted time and cleaned up well after the job.

Our company was established in UK 9 years ago,Before that we have worked in Portugal,France.We are experienced in refurbishment work,all carpenter work,bathroom fitting,all kinds of external insulation and rendering finishes.We are all certificated.Our work is supported with references. We will do our best to satisfy everyone with the quality of the work we can offer.

Latest homeowner review

Reviewed by Donald on 5/5/2020

They were very reliable and polite .They even repaired a broken water pipe for me with no charge.I would defenatly recommend them.I wil certanly be using them again.

hi there welcome to my profile our business is very smal run by myself and dad who have 10+ years in the building trade. no job is too big or too small free no obligation quotes we undertake any jobs from stone walls, patio's, plastering many other jobs

Latest homeowner review

Reviewed by Claire on 26/10/2017

A quick response, work completed the next day. A nice clean finish.

TLT Finishing & Building Services Ltd offers multi trade services. We are a family run company with 15 years+ experience in the industry and specialise in building works, bathroom fittings, extensions + K Rend. We care about the finer details and strive to provide you with the best experience when it comes taking that next step in creating your perfect home. We are a registered limited company who are fully insured, we also offer 24/7 support + after care so you can put your mind at ease. Please get in touch, we'd love to hear from you!

Latest homeowner review

Reviewed by Zac on 11/7/2020

An outstanding group of workers. Not only did they finish this complicated, fiddly job ahead of time but also under budget. They were clean and tidy, punctual, informed me what they were doing at every stage. I highly recommend them. Thank you.

Best choice contract to Ltd we specialise in top and quality construction project in Wiltshire and London we cover all areas of building work from renovation and extension and conversion through to entire managed construction project whether you want a larger kitchen open plan living area and extra bedroom a house extension we could take you one step closer to having the home of your dream we work throughout Wiltshire and London area providing reasonable price quality construction and building services to a wide range of satisfied clients we pride ourselves on our reputation by offering a high standard of workmanship friendly and professional advice and making your project with us as hasslefree as possible

Latest homeowner review

Reviewed by Pranav on 7/11/2019

Valentino has done a fantastic job of bathroom and kitchen refurbishment. He has delivered what he had promised no hidden charges and no false promises. Very reliable and soft spoken. He uses the best material in the market so quality of product is very good. He did the facia as well which is also of very good specifications. Overall he is a fantastic builder and I would 100% recommend him.

Reno Floors

Underpinning / Piling / Foundations

serious company, good knowledge about the jobs and materials, experience,high quality work, Fast and Clean after us ! don’t hesitate to contact us!

Latest homeowner review

Reviewed by Deepak on 10/9/2020

5/5 for quality 5/5 for knowledge 5/5 for professionalism 4/5 for project timeline management Reno took a lot of interest in making sure every aspect of the project was thought of before starting the project. He also took the effort to identify cost effective suppliers when required. He also ensured delivery atthe site was handled efficiently, without any need to be present all the time. The project took a little longer than expected, which was the only downside.

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Underpinning / Piling / Foundations specialists - what you need to know

When it comes to foundations and underpinning, the name tells you everything you need to know about their importance to your home. This specialist groundwork quite literally provides the base your home is built on. And that’s why it’s absolutely vital the professionals you use are experienced experts who know what they’re doing.

The complexity of foundations (and underpinning or piling, if required) depends on the structure you’re building, and the state of the ground your home or plot sits on. Basic foundations involve filling trenches (dug precisely according to plans) with a layer of solid concrete and then building blockwork up to ground level. Alternatively, an entire trench can be filled with concrete to just below ground level before adding damp proof coursing.

Piling is becoming an increasing popular alternative to standard footings or foundations. It involves driving piles into the ground, which are made from steel, concrete or even wood. A ground beam then sits atop the foundation, which your structure can be built on.

Underpinning is required when existing foundations have become defective, and to counter issues like subsidence. The appropriate method will be recommended by an experienced groundwork specialist and potentially a structural engineer too. The standard approach to underpinning involves excavating specific sections below the footing and reinforcing them with concrete. Piling techniques provide an alternative to traditional underpinning and can be used in situations where there’s restricted access. Not only is piling faster than standard underpinning, but it has a higher load capability and less disruption. Those benefits come at a cost though, and you’ll find piling is significantly pricier than standard concrete underpinning.

Cost of foundations, underpinning and piling

It pays to invest in foundations, but quite how much you’ll need to invest depends on the type of foundations you require. Basic foundation laying involves the following steps (excluding site clearance and the setting out of footings):

  • Excavation: £7-£10 per sqm
  • Laying foundations (concrete and blockwork): £40-£60 per sqm

Piling costs are typically significantly higher than standard foundations – anywhere from 2-3 times more expensive than the concrete and blockwork method.

Similarly, underpinning costs vary according to the issue that needs to be resolved, and the method selected. For mass concrete underpinning you can expect to pay between £1,000-£2,000 per linear metre.

How to build a foundation

Basic foundations follow a fairly simple process. After you’ve consulted a structural engineer and have all the necessary plans approved, the first step is to dig out trenches. Your groundwork professional may recommend a ground survey before any digging begins. This process involves creating trial holes to ensure the foundation method you plan to use is appropriate. With (or without) that survey complete, footings can then be dug to the agreed level.

The next phase involves laying concrete into the base of the trench to at least 250mm in depth. Blockwork is then built up to floor level. This method is called a strip foundation. Alternatively, a technique known as “trenchfill” involves (unsurprisingly) filling the trench with concrete to just below ground level. Both methods are completed with the application of a damp-proof course onto which the ground floor can be installed.

How does piling work

There are three main piling techniques: screw piling, pile and beam, and piled raft.

Screw piling is the simplest piling technique to execute. A small crew of ground-workers can install screw piles and brackets by hand or with the assistance of a small excavator. This method is well-suited to walls and larger structures, when used with supporting brackets. Screw piling offers a number of benefits, including ease of installation, lower costs and reduced environmental impact.

The pile and beam method involves installing mini-piles either side of a wall. Brickwork can then be removed below the affected wall, and a reinforced concrete needle beam inserted to connect the piles. The pile and beam technique is well-suited to homes on smaller plots, or with restricted access. It’s also faster and less messy than traditional mass concrete underpinning and is capable of bearing high loads.

Finally, there’s the piled raft approach. Piled raft foundations are required when an entire building needs to be underpinned, when foundations can’t be accessed or where soil conditions aren’t suitable for any other method. Piles are placed into the ground and needle beams are installed to help bear the load. A ring beam links the needles together and the structure is then filled with concrete.

When does a house need underpinning?

Cracked walls, ceilings or flooring are the tell-tale signs that you may need to have all or part of your home underpinned. Diagonal cracks, or those that reach a quarter of an inch or larger, are classic symptoms of faulty foundations, or problematic ground conditions. More severe warning signs are walls beginning to buckle. Underpinning, either using the mass concrete method or any of the piling techniques outlined above, can help to remedy these problems.

While underpinning is usually associated with foundation problems, it can also be required if you’re planning to add another floor to a building, or if it needs to stand up to increased load-bearing requirements.

The qualifications your foundation, piling or underpinning professional needs

Foundations and piling or underpinning will almost always require the expertise of a structural engineer. They will be able to advise on load bearing considerations, as well as the most appropriate technique to use (taking ground and soil conditions into account). Choose an experienced professional who holds chartered status from the Institution of Structural Engineers.

The groundworkers carrying out your excavation work should also be experienced, though they won’t need formal accreditation. A diploma, City and Guilds qualification or evidence of completing an apprenticeship is always helpful, but ultimately you should look for a proven track record of delivering groundwork services to a high standard and complete customer satisfaction.

Planning permission for foundation, piling or underpinning work

How and where you lay foundations will be determined by the planning permission you’ve been granted. This will be decided by your local planning authority, and unless an unforeseen issue crops up you’ll need to stick closely to what you’ve been given permission for.

When it comes to underpinning, you won’t require planning permission to remedy a fault with your foundations. The only exception here is a listed building, which may have certain limitations.

Insurance for foundation, piling or underpinning work

It’s crucial that your professional holds public liability insurance, to cover your property against damage. Such is the importance of this work, most structural engineers will also hold professional indemnity insurance, protecting them in case anything goes wrong with the services they’ve provided.

Questions you should ask your foundation, piling or underpinning professional

  • For standard foundations, which method would they use (and why)?
  • Will they be using a strip or trenchfill foundation?
  • For underpinning, which technique would they advise on (and why)?
  • For piling, what is the most cost-effective option available?
  • Can they provide a warranty (or do they have professional indemnity insurance) to cover their work?

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How our service works

  1. Create a job - it's free

    We'll connect you with the right tradesmen, from over 30 different trades.

  2. Get quotes

    Up to 3 tradesmen can provide a quote, but on average you'll get 1-2.

  3. Check ratings

    Look at each tradesperson's profile to see their ratings and reviews.

  4. Pick a tradesperson

    Use our homeowner checklist for extra tips on choosing a tradesperson.

  5. Job done

    Leave a rating for your tradesperson based on quality, reliablity and value.

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