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Old 06-20-2009, 01:32 AM
 
Location: North Texas
4 posts, read 7,309 times
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Cool Does your Texas home have a basement or storm shelter

When I lived in Georgia there was almost always a basement or a storm shelter however living in Texas out of all of the homes I've looked at, lived in, been to .... no basement, no storm shelter.



It's peculiar to me because, especially the Dallas-Fort Worth area has a tendency to get many tornadoes. And it just seems weird to me that if not an underground storm shelter there also is no basements.

So if you live in a house does your home have a basement or a storm shelter?
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Old 06-20-2009, 05:55 AM
 
Location: North of DFW
595 posts, read 1,684,416 times
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Most homes in the North Central area of Texas don't have basements or storm shelters. I've seen other post on city-data about basements or lack there of....try doing a search. If I remember correctly it has something to do with the soil conditions in this area.
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Old 06-20-2009, 06:13 AM
 
5,031 posts, read 7,800,554 times
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My home has a storm cellar because I had it put in over 10 years ago after that killer tornado in Jarrell. I have never seen a home in Texas with a basement; it is strange. I can't imagine the entire area has soil issues. Some people nowadays are building safe rooms but in my opinion, anything above ground in a killer tornado or even lesser is not safe.

There are quite a few storm cellars in my little rural town that have been here for many, many years. For some reason, they just don't put them in like they used to do, but I FINALLY made sure I had one albeit it took me long enough, about 20 years to do it.
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Old 06-20-2009, 06:17 AM
 
Location: Grapevine, Texas
6,580 posts, read 10,464,280 times
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Anywhere in North Texas that has the black clay soil will be VERY difficult to put in a basement/storm cellar. It can be done, but it is prohibitively expensive.

I've lived in Texas for 37 years, and the closest I came to a tornado was when we lived in San Angelo. I've never had a close call in DFW...
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Old 06-20-2009, 06:39 AM
 
5,031 posts, read 7,800,554 times
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Here is an interesting read.

Do you need a storm shelter? | News for Dallas, Texas | Dallas Morning News | Home and Gardening | Dallas Morning News (http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/fea/home/stories/DN-NHG_tornado_0323liv.ART.State.Edition1.e4585f.html - broken link)
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Old 06-20-2009, 07:31 AM
 
Location: Trans-Pecos Texas
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Basements in Texas are extremely rare. In my 50+ years of living in West Texas, I never heard of more than a rare few (like maybe 2 out of over 1000 MLS listings). In WT and Central Texas, you often run into rock not very far down, and it entails blasting, which is time-consuming and expensive.
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Old 06-20-2009, 07:39 AM
 
Location: Central Texas
16,234 posts, read 22,143,012 times
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We have a storm shelter that we put in about 9 years ago (we live in Jarrell and lived here when the F5 came through, but it was at our son's insistence - he was in Annapolis then and didn't know for 3 days if he had a family left). No basement. I've seen two houses with actual basements in Texas - a few with "walk out basements" (house is build on the side of a hill and the area under the house is finished out into rooms with an exit). It's not a Texas thing - partially soil, partially we've got so much room we just don't need them.
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Old 06-20-2009, 09:23 AM
 
Location: The Big D
14,874 posts, read 23,002,378 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cathy4017 View Post
Basements in Texas are extremely rare. In my 50+ years of living in West Texas, I never heard of more than a rare few (like maybe 2 out of over 1000 MLS listings). In WT and Central Texas, you often run into rock not very far down, and it entails blasting, which is time-consuming and expensive.
We even have areas of white rock in the Dallas area. Our house sits on it as does one of our commercial properties. When building our new addition they had a HECK OF A TIME digging just for the plumbing. The plumber was about to die with all of the rock that was only about 12"-18" below the surface.

Yes, the soil and the frost line play a HUGE part in no basements being in MOST of Texas. Texas is a HUGE state and there are areas where basements are a bit more common but still not wide spread. The Panhandle is one such area. In the Dallas area we do have some areas w/ gentle rolling hills and some builders have done the "walk out" basement. Same goes for some areas of East Texas. Our neighbor at our lakehouse has a walkout basement.

Decades ago storm shelters were a lot more prevelant and you can still see some in older neighborhoods. They just get way too dank and moldy around here because of the temps. Then if your lot deals w/ clay or rock........ FORGET IT! You don't want to put one in the clay that is in a good portion of the DFW area. You could find it floating above ground if your not careful.

I'm over 40 and have never seen a tornado or had a house or any of my relatives houses been hit by one. It's not like they are an everyday event and the chances of actually being in one are not THAT high. Not saying they NEVER occur just that it is not something one should worry about day and night. I actually prefer the safe rooms built into a house. They can be just as safe as an underground shelter and you don't have to worry about it floating off, flooding or getting dank, musty and moldy.
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Old 06-20-2009, 09:39 AM
 
Location: Central Texas
16,234 posts, read 22,143,012 times
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Having seen what the F5 did, if I'm going to have a storm shelter, it's not going to be a safe room, it's going to be underground (and it is). That thing wiped everything down to the ground - there wasn't even plumbing left in the slabs that were left. (The phrase, "Wiped clean by the wroth of God" suddenly had meaning for me when I drove through that area.)

My grandparents in East Texas had a storm shelter and I use ours for much the same thing my grandmother did - extra storage (hers was a "root cellar" when it wasn't being used for tornados). It has a wind turbine thingy on the top to keep the air fresh.

Ours did flood once, but that was a 500-year flood.
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Old 06-20-2009, 10:53 AM
 
5,031 posts, read 7,800,554 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasHorseLady View Post
Having seen what the F5 did, if I'm going to have a storm shelter, it's not going to be a safe room, it's going to be underground (and it is). That thing wiped everything down to the ground - there wasn't even plumbing left in the slabs that were left. (The phrase, "Wiped clean by the wroth of God" suddenly had meaning for me when I drove through that area.)

My grandparents in East Texas had a storm shelter and I use ours for much the same thing my grandmother did - extra storage (hers was a "root cellar" when it wasn't being used for tornados). It has a wind turbine thingy on the top to keep the air fresh.

Ours did flood once, but that was a 500-year flood.
Amen to no safe rooms. They'd be fine in a pinch (a small F) but when the concrete gets ripped off the highways, one isn't going to be safe unless underground.

Mine has never flooded nor does it stink or get moldy. I wouldn't trade it for a new car.

I guess you and I both became true believers after the Jarrell tornado. Even though I live quite a ways from there, that was it for me. No more living in tornado alley without one.
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