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nunya
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reply to IowaCowboy

Re: [general] Why don't houses in the south have basements

I've often wondered the same thing. I know there are always going to be some situations where a basement isn't feasible.
But, to live in tornado alley and not have a basement is insane.

For one thing, it's a good place to keep all your shit. You can stick all your mechanicals down there and free up living space.

Around here, a basement is the "norm". A house on slab or crawl will have a lower value.

I've noticed other regional quirks. Outdoor breaker panels are a rarity here, but commonplace in the South and West (I guess because there's no basement to put them in ).
Other regional quirks that bug me: No attic, no gutters, no doorstep, shallow water lines, stucco, outdoor laundry, outdoor appliances (water heater / furnace), and no central air (just to name a few).
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ilikeme
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said by nunya:

I've noticed other regional quirks. Outdoor breaker panels are a rarity here, but commonplace in the South and West (I guess because there's no basement to put them in ).
Other regional quirks that bug me: No attic, no gutters, no doorstep, shallow water lines, stucco, outdoor laundry, outdoor appliances (water heater / furnace), and no central air (just to name a few).

Around Dallas and Houston outdoor panels are more common on older houses rather than newer ones. Usually houses built after the 60's-70's have them in either the garage or laundry room, and occasionally outside.
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medbuyer

join:2003-11-20
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reply to nunya
said by nunya:

I've often wondered the same thing. I know there are always going to be some situations where a basement isn't feasible.

But, to live in tornado alley and not have a basement is insane.

some have resorted to installing tornado shelters inside their garage...

»www.tswstormshelters.com/customerphotos.html

»www.stormsheltersoftennessee.com···ers.html


djrobx
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reply to nunya
said by nunya:

I've noticed other regional quirks. Outdoor breaker panels are a rarity here, but commonplace in the South and West (I guess because there's no basement to put them in ).

I live in an area where the outdoor breaker is the norm. I don't get it either. Around here the service entrance is almost always located on the outside of an attached garage, it would be just as easy to put the panel on the inside. I think it's mainly because they can put the breakers and meter pan in the same box (cheaper), and well, the power company used to need to read the meter.
said by nunya:

... no gutters ...

Our current home has no gutters. Some neighbors have added them. I haven't figured out a good reason to add them to this house. If I did, it would just be something else I'd have to clean the debris out of. The majority of the water comes down from the roof onto cement walkways with drains, and there's no basement to worry about flooding.

For one thing, it's a good place to keep all your shit. You can stick all your mechanicals down there and free up living space.

We store our shit (and some mechanicals, if attached) in our garages. It's extremely common to see two car garages with only room for one car to park.

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patcat88

join:2002-04-05
Jamaica, NY
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reply to nunya
said by nunya:

Other regional quirks that bug me: No attic, no gutters,... outdoor laundry, outdoor appliances (water heater / furnace), and no central air (just to name a few).

Outdoor laundry? indoor designed units outdoors? under eve or 100% open to rain? or you mean air drying of laundry? Outdoor water heater? is that an indoor unit being used outdoors with no smoke stack? no central air means window acs? no attic means flatroof or too small to put anything in it? no gutters? wouldnt that rot the siding and kill the grass under the edge?


nunya
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The next time you visit the SW part of the country take a look around. You will see people with water heaters, water softeners, furnaces, washers, and dryers on the back / side of their house. Some are 1/2 assed covered with an awning or lean-to. Others don't even bother. I'd say a big chunk of the appliances are not intended to be outdoors.

I have friends in the PNW who have brand new homes which were built with no central air. They don't even have window units. Usually, it's not real hot there, but they sure were bitching up a storm last summer. As soon as a store would get A/C's, they'd be sold out.
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AVonGauss
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Boynton Beach, FL
reply to patcat88
said by patcat88:

no attic means flatroof or too small to put anything in it? no gutters? wouldnt that rot the siding and kill the grass under the edge?

You truncated a few others from his post, but if you add back in stucco you've just described most houses in South Florida. There is no siding to rot (stucco) and the soil, if you can call it that, is mostly sand based and drains very rapidly unless there's a lot of rapid rain. With no gutters, since most houses are on slabs, you run more of a risk of erosion causing long term damage.

Most A/C compressors are mounted on their own slab here in Florida, Las Vegas seems to favor the roof. It could be because Las Vegas is generally more windy, or maybe thats just how they started and kept doing it the same way. I can say most places don't have basements, and it generally is due to the soil and very high water table. The few places that do have basements, generally need to actively maintain the environment.

patcat88

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Jamaica, NY
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said by AVonGauss:

said by patcat88:

no attic means flatroof or too small to put anything in it? no gutters? wouldnt that rot the siding and kill the grass under the edge?

You truncated a few others from his post, but if you add back in stucco you've just described most houses in South Florida. There is no siding to rot (stucco) and the soil, if you can call it that, is mostly sand based and drains very rapidly unless there's a lot of rapid rain.

I didnt have a question over stucco, so I removed it.


Doctor Olds
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1 edit
reply to AVonGauss
said by AVonGauss:

I can say most places don't have basements, and it generally is due to the soil and very high water table. The few places that do have basements, generally need to actively maintain the environment.

Generally that's not accurate.

»www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/···20110531
quote:
Nationally, 42 percent of new homes had basements in 1992, according to the Census survey, compared to 30 percent in 2009.
I have lived in a house (North Metro Atlanta) with a dry basement for 25+ Years now and nothing has to be done to or for the basement in order to keep it actively that way. It is passively dry all Year long.
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AVonGauss
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Boynton Beach, FL
said by Doctor Olds:

Generally that's not accurate.

»www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/···20110531

quote:
Nationally, 42 percent of new homes had basements in 1992, according to the Census survey, compared to 30 percent in 2009.
I have lived in a house with a dry basement for 25+ Years now and nothing has to be done to or for the basement in order to keep it actively that way. It is passively drive all Year long.

... in South Florida?


54067323

join:2012-09-25
Tuscaloosa, AL
said by AVonGauss:

... in South Florida?

In South Florida basements are known as swimming pools.


Doctor Olds
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reply to AVonGauss
said by AVonGauss:

... in South Florida?

No, North Metro Atlanta, one State above Florida.

AVonGauss
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Boynton Beach, FL
Understood, my post was talking specifically about South Florida.