Demolition – What you need to know
It’s time for that structure to go. There are numerous ways to remove an old building or house, and whether you decide to dismantle it board by board or to rent a wrecking ball, there are still a few fundamental things you should know.
FIRST STEPSThe first few things you want to consider when first preparing for demolition is:
- Building Square Footage
- Type of Construction
- Time Constraints
PERMITTINGNext, you will want to contact your local city hall or local government office to find out what type of permit you will need and to start the necessary paperwork. You should contact your local 811 agency or other utility companies to have any underground utilities on site marked before any demolition begins.
INSURANCEIt should go without saying that a demolition project of any size comes with inherent dangers and risks. Be sure your contractor has proper coverage or that you carry liability insurance in the chances of a catastrophic event.
BUILDING SIZE AND SQUARE FOOTAGEThe amount of waste you will have, and its weight are the two most important factors in planning your project. The building footprint (or square footage), the number of stories, and the type of construction determine those factors. When calculating the structure’s square footage, you may need to make adjustments for things such as height and pitch of the roof. Is there an attic or large gables? Other factors that will affect your accurate calculation for square footage are existing basements, porches, or unwanted outbuildings.
OTHER STRUCTURESAre there other structures on the property that need to be included in your calculations such as an old shed or barn? Will you also be removing trees and shrubbery? Will you be tearing out concrete or other masonry? Is there a driveway, massive chimney, or patio that you will be demolishing and removing?
TYPE OF BUILDING
- The building you will be removing is a critical factor in your weight calculations.
- How is the building constructed? Is the frame wood, metal studs, or cinder blocks? What type of exterior does it have, vinyl siding or brick?
- What type of foundation is the building sitting on? Is it on a slab or a plywood subfloor?
- Does the structure have a considerable footing that will have to be dug up?
- Once you have determined the type of structure you are removing there are many free resources available to help you get a good idea of the building weight using the square footage and elementary math.