Drought-like conditions could be causing damage to your home's foundation

Less moisture in the soil can cause homes to settle
Posted at 5:35 PM, Aug 17, 2022

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Droughts can lead to a shortage of water and hurt crops, but they can also damage the very foundation of your house.

Drought conditions around Middle Tennessee this summer have reduced the amount of moisture in the soil. That can cause homes to settle, according to AFS Foundations and Waterproofing Specialists of Nashville.

The company is seeing soil shrinkage create foundation settlement issues, leading to home health symptoms like sticking doors and windows, drywall cracks, uneven floors and major foundation cracks.

Bailey Mross with AFS says after a summer like this one, homeowners shouldn't expect cracks and shifts to just work themselves out.

"Your cracks can seal and open, but overtime, as it keeps doing that, the flexibility of the house is going to get worse, and then the soil is going to get worse, especially in the drought-like times, so now the settlement will get to the point where it's not going to come back," said Bailey Mross.

More than one-third of Tennessee is having an abnormally dry summer. The US Drought Monitor even shows part of the mid-state in a severe drought.

Drought damage can be minimized if you keep the ground around your house hydrated using a soaker or drip hose.

Most homeowner insurance policies do not cover damage due to drought, settling and soil expansion.