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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am working with a customer who owns a lot on a lake in the Twin Cities area and wants me to build a home on it for them. I have never built a home on a lake or property that isn't a new development. It makes me a bit nervous being so close to the water, that the soil may be unstable. Is it a good idea to have the owner doing soil testing prior to me giving a price to the buyer? Who would I call to do such a thing? Are the tests accurate?
 

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GC/carpenter
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BrightonHomesMN said:
I am working with a customer who owns a lot on a lake in the Twin Cities area and wants me to build a home on it for them. I have never built a home on a lake or property that isn't a new development. It makes me a bit nervous being so close to the water, that the soil may be unstable. Is it a good idea to have the owner doing soil testing prior to me giving a price to the buyer? Who would I call to do such a thing? Are the tests accurate?
Call a soils engineer there is a ton of them around here. They will come out sometimes just look at it and give suggestions. Other times they will take samples. Also they will check out compaction as well.
 

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You may have local agencies that have regs about grading, excavation, storm water run off, erosion control, spoils storage, concrete washout as well as engineering requirements for your foundation.

Better do some checking. If you mention that you can even see water out here you have a pile of regs to deal with.

and yes Geo Tech report is pretty accurate.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Typically the city tests and inspects the developments here. They all need to meet a certain compaction for the pads. I have never had to worry about it. My main concern is that I have to dig the foundation down 42" for the frost depth. The lake is only 6' below the building pad currently, so how stable will the soil be at that level.

I am aware of all of the erosion control regulations in the area. It is one of the toughest watershed districts in the state.
 

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Money Maker
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Get a soil boring. They will determine what needs to be done. The engineer/architect will use their numbers for their calculations and determine what will be needed for building.

If the house sinks and you build it he way they said it's their fault. I get a soil boring on any new home construction here in NJ. Even when I take down an old home prior to new build. It's cheap insurance that takes the liability off me and to another company lol.
 

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I have a neighbor with a pool in his basement because the "builder" didn't do any of the aforementioned.
In fact they backfilled swamp land and built on that. Amazing what some guys do and get away with.

Yes it's in a flood zone too.
 

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Just call a soils engineering firm or an engineering firm that does soils.

Any time you are near a lake in MN, it pays to have one done because of the glacial deposits and sediment or ponding that create an apparent water level, but the real water level could be above that and cause some big excavation and foundation problems. The situations can vary widely and an educated engineer can look at a site and do the right method of testing, sampling or boring.
 
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