View Full Version : What is th typical foundation wall height?

12-11-2004, 05:50 PM
Just curious what the typical foundation wall height is for a full basement. My plans call for 8ft but I start to lose some of that height with the mechanicals and floor slab. I was wondering if it could be increased to 9ft. In addition to the extra concrete needed, what other costs would be incurred? Do contractors charge more for the longer forms?

Thanks for your help.

12-11-2004, 06:25 PM
A contractor would charge more for the additional formwork. Depending on the system they use will depend on the additional amount they charge.

12-12-2004, 09:37 PM
Thanks Rich.


12-13-2004, 09:22 PM
Why not get the extra foot with framing?

12-14-2004, 02:47 AM
1' of framing on top of a foundation? I saw a guy who tried that - couldn't get enough shear in that 1' and the 1' section and the whole floor fell over. 1/2 of the floor ended up in the basement.

12-14-2004, 08:56 AM
I figured it was something. What's the minimum height for something like that then? Would a 2' wall work?

12-14-2004, 01:58 PM
Not sure - I would imagine 2' would work just fine - but IMO you're not really gaining anything over concrete as far as cost goes. I would rather pay a little more to get the concrete done right.

12-14-2004, 09:06 PM
Ok, then what's the tallest you can go with a foundation until it gets too expensive?

12-15-2004, 04:18 AM
I would say 10' sidewalls off from footing. This allows for 8' straight wall forms with a 2' running horizontal. The cost to put that last 2' piece on is not that much compared to the benefit of having a solid foundation.

12-15-2004, 12:43 PM

12-20-2004, 11:39 AM
I work in the st louis area as an estimator for a residential foundation company. I my opinion the most cost effective way to increase height is to go to a 9 foot pour. Most residential companys in our area are using advance forms or aluminum forms which are available in 8 and 9 foot sizes. This makes the forming take just as much time for either size pour. A standandard 8 pour would consist of a 8" thick wall with 2 #4 bars top and bottom and a 8" x 24" footing with 2 #4 bars continuous. However, costs go up with a 9' pour due to the fact that most architects will require you to go to a 10" thick wall with an 10" x 24" footing. Most will also require an extra row of 2#4 rebar in the midpoint of the wall. This is pretty much the standard for this area. For a good guess on the up charge, it is generally 25% more to go to 9' wall. 10' walls and above get pricey because they will need to be stacked to reach the desired height and may add additonal steel and wall thickness. In my house i would not do anything other than a 9' pour. it is also possible to squeeze a couple of inches in by plating the foundation with up to 4 sill plates. It can be done, bu I would not reccomend it.

12-20-2004, 11:53 AM
awesome info, thanks.

01-03-2005, 07:55 AM
I am pouring 11'4" walls in the spring. The engineer called out rebar #5 @15" vertical and #4@18" horiz.

01-13-2005, 05:16 AM
Looks like I found another sub. Hey Pokey, check your PM and get with me. Thanks.

03-21-2005, 10:29 AM
This is Phil - I am locked out under my name for some reason and am trying to straighten it out. Using my wife's logon.
My question is since Pokey estimates foundations in the St. Louis area - What would the cost of a basement in Rolla, MO (or St. Louis) be roughly. 8" x 8 ft height. Do you figure extra for each corner, since my house will have several. Also rough cost of shorter (4' wall) in garage.
I have my own crawler loader and will probably dig it myself since I expect to hit rock.
I was thinking of renting forms, but I don't think I would save enough to make it worth it. Besides, I'm getting old.
I've been happy with the 8-ft. basement for the last 30 years and don't plan on finishing the basement. More room than I'll ever need upstairs.
A basement is worth the cost for storage, maybe laundry, and not having to crawl into a crawl space for plumbing, wiring, heating, hot water heater, etc. I have a feeling the cost will be returned many times on increased value of house also.

03-22-2005, 06:06 AM

In response to your question there are quite a few varibles in figuring the cost for a basement. A lot of my bid depends on the details on the plans. The typical 8' x 8" basement around here goes for about $45 to $50 per foot assuming 2 #4 bars top in bottom in the wall and a 24" x 8" footing. this price inculdes labor and material. I do not usually charge more for corners if there is less than 10. If so i start adding time based on the complexity of the basement. Also it takes us more time to set a walkout basement than an ingrade so that also effects the price. Also figure things like brick chase, siding nailers, windows will start adding to the price. A 4' x 8" wall goes for about $ 30 per foot give or take a couple bucks.

03-23-2005, 05:07 AM

I figured about $10,000 for the stem walls if I rent forms, and using your figures about $14,000 on my house plan. It would probably be in my best interest to have it done professionally if I could find a good concrete man in Rolla, MO.