U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Texas > Dallas
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 08-14-2013, 10:07 PM
 
61 posts, read 150,626 times
Reputation: 26

Advertisements

I have chosen a lot to build a home on. The front door faces east. Behind the home in the backyard is a huge retaining wall. The bottom is stone and the top is a fence. Is this bad? There are only a few lots left in this complex and most have retaining walls.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 08-14-2013, 10:31 PM
 
72 posts, read 137,345 times
Reputation: 91
How tall and long is it?

My personal rule is not to buy a house if the retaining wall is higher than a few feet high. They can get extremely expensive fast if they're tall.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-14-2013, 10:39 PM
 
61 posts, read 150,626 times
Reputation: 26
It's quite high. Not sure how high but it's something the hoa takes care of. Why would it be exp? It's already built
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-15-2013, 06:34 AM
 
Location: Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX
1,855 posts, read 5,670,655 times
Reputation: 3060
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mckgirl11 View Post
I have chosen a lot to build a home on. The front door faces east. Behind the home in the backyard is a huge retaining wall. The bottom is stone and the top is a fence. Is this bad? There are only a few lots left in this complex and most have retaining walls.
There is nothing wrong with a properly engineered (designed) and constructed retaining wall. What I would recommend that you do though is have the builder display the engineered plan for the retaining wall and the proper inspections reports either from the Engineer or the City indicating that it was built as per the engineered design.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mckgirl11 View Post
It's quite high. Not sure how high but it's something the hoa takes care of. Why would it be exp? It's already built
An improperly engineered or improperly constructed retaining wall can last a long time under the most favorable of conditions. Unfortunately we do not have those conditions here and the life time of the wall can not be determined. If that retaining wall does experience problems YOU are the HOA and the repairs for it will most likely be coming from YOUR dues and HOA assessments for repairs! Repairing/rebuilding even a short section of retaining wall can be very expensive!

What is also important here is not just the retaining wall but the grading and drainage provisions that have been made in the rear yard of the lot you selected. Think like water that flows and take a close look at not only your chosen lot but the lots around you (left and right all down the street) as well. There might be times where runoff from heavy rains can breach the top of the wall and wind up in your back yard. Have proper provisions been made to quickly drain that run-off away? How large is this back yard? Those drainage provisions should not be blocked or disturbed. Is there sufficient space in the rear yard for you to do with what you had planned without disturbing those drainage provisions? You need to also consider that if you read your homeowner's warranty if you fail to maintain proper drainage and grading then that might well affect any warranty provisions for the home's foundation and structure.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-15-2013, 06:58 AM
 
Location: Prosper
6,268 posts, read 12,101,075 times
Reputation: 9325
Is this lot in McKinney? If so, don't worry about the wall. Most homes here have them. (I just added onto mine, and extended it around my backyard to level it.)

Any wall over 2 ft high in McKinney has to be done by a structural engineer, and the plans submitted to the City of McKinney. Drainage piping is used at the bottom of the wall. My existing wall was about 4 ft high in some spots, the part I added is close to 5 ft high at one point. Hired a company to do the wall, new fence, and level my yard. They contracted an engineer who drew up the plans and sent them to the city for approval.

There are some neighborhoods near mine where I've seen retaining walls that are 20+ feet high... no joke.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-15-2013, 08:33 AM
 
29 posts, read 42,755 times
Reputation: 48
They are definitely expensive, but when done right there is nothing to fear about them. Just got a quote for a 5' tall, 53 linear foot keystone wall for around $20k. It was definitely shocking, as my backyard is pretty small.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-15-2013, 08:40 AM
 
7,282 posts, read 8,112,371 times
Reputation: 5366
My granddad built, with his own hands over the course of about a year, a "dry-stack" L-shaped retaining wall behind his home. It's still perfect.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-15-2013, 09:53 AM
 
Location: Funky town
951 posts, read 1,418,792 times
Reputation: 640
Quote:
Originally Posted by escanlan View Post
There is nothing wrong with a properly engineered (designed) and constructed retaining wall. What I would recommend that you do though is have the builder display the engineered plan for the retaining wall and the proper inspections reports either from the Engineer or the City indicating that it was built as per the engineered design.



An improperly engineered or improperly constructed retaining wall can last a long time under the most favorable of conditions. Unfortunately we do not have those conditions here and the life time of the wall can not be determined. If that retaining wall does experience problems YOU are the HOA and the repairs for it will most likely be coming from YOUR dues and HOA assessments for repairs! Repairing/rebuilding even a short section of retaining wall can be very expensive!

What is also important here is not just the retaining wall but the grading and drainage provisions that have been made in the rear yard of the lot you selected. Think like water that flows and take a close look at not only your chosen lot but the lots around you (left and right all down the street) as well. There might be times where runoff from heavy rains can breach the top of the wall and wind up in your back yard. Have proper provisions been made to quickly drain that run-off away? How large is this back yard? Those drainage provisions should not be blocked or disturbed. Is there sufficient space in the rear yard for you to do with what you had planned without disturbing those drainage provisions? You need to also consider that if you read your homeowner's warranty if you fail to maintain proper drainage and grading then that might well affect any warranty provisions for the home's foundation and structure.
^^^ This. We had a similar situation and luckily we are sitting on high compared to any lots on the left and we have street on the right with good drainage. We also have a retaining wall on the back and we checked whether the water is draining off quickly. This is one of the reason one should invest in a quality builder and more importantly a quality development company. The latter is what people fail to ask in their due diligence.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-15-2013, 10:23 AM
 
61 posts, read 150,626 times
Reputation: 26
This is in mckinney at inwood hills. I can attach a pic but dunno how? The builder is saying the wall is designed well and we won't have drainage issues. But I dunno if I trust them

And the other issue is the home will face east which means the back of the house will be hot in the afternoon. They told us the retaining wall and the homes behind will help with the sun. Lol
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-15-2013, 12:58 PM
 
Location: Funky town
951 posts, read 1,418,792 times
Reputation: 640
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mckgirl11 View Post
This is in mckinney at inwood hills. I can attach a pic but dunno how? The builder is saying the wall is designed well and we won't have drainage issues. But I dunno if I trust them

And the other issue is the home will face east which means the back of the house will be hot in the afternoon. They told us the retaining wall and the homes behind will help with the sun. Lol
Look for the attachment button on the reply. Also, who is the builder and who developed the community (developer)? For example, Warren Clark developers are a great company that developed the communities in South lake and prosper. I believe they also developed in Mck. They are a A+ developers. Similarly, Highland homes, Darling homes are higher-end quality tract builders. Drees, Shaddock, Huntington, Belclaire, etc are good semi-custom builders as well.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Texas > Dallas
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top