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We Don’t Like Our Underground House


MizBejabbers is a creator who has lived on this underground home since 1994. She writes from trip, no longer marketing hype.

The front entrance to our underground home—an atrium that is accessible by a double staircase, one of stone and the other of wood.

The front entrance to our underground home—an atrium that is accessible by a double staircase, one in all stone and the assorted of wood.

Our Journey With This Eighth Wonder of the World

Eighteen years up to now, we moved into an earth-sheltered dome home built in a hillside. We had been so angry! It used to be genuinely pretty inside, and surprisingly, nicely-illuminated with pure gentle. Our home has approximately 2,500 sq. feet., including three bedrooms, two baths, and an outsized garage. The rooms are huge and immense, with 14-foot domed ceilings.

The domes and floor of our underground home are built from poured concrete bolstered with rebar. Out front, an atrium could per chance furthermore furthermore be accessed by a staircase that is correct the width of the driveway from the avenue. Tremendous home windows on the east side of bedrooms front the atrium and let in more sunlight hours than a conventional frequent home built correct through that duration of time. The garage is on the bogus side of the atrium.

Out back is a 14’ X 14’ greenhouse and decks on three ranges with a south watch of the Arkansas River and a line-of-witness watch of the Arkansas Utter Capitol on the hill all the way during the river. The massive south-going through home windows and patio doors of the immense room lead out to the greenhouse and two of the decks. A half-domed third bedroom has a window wall that shares the identical views. The third deck could per chance furthermore furthermore be accessed from the rooftop and used to be built on high of the greenhouse.

We had been in Hog Heaven—actually. After all, here’s the Razorbacks’ home boom.

Our beautiful view.

Our intellectual watch.

Pros and Cons of an Underground Home

Pros Cons

Safety from tornados


Heaps of pure gentle

Floods with out effort

Sizable views

Miniature landscaping

No noise from the avenue or neighbors

Cracks correct through earthquakes

Pets seem to find it irresistible

Not easy and dear repairs

Being nearer to nature


Depreciating home price

Pest issues

Contributors will invade your privacy.

Why We Don’t Esteem Our Underground Home

Unfortunately, our enthusiasm did not final more than a pair of years. Our dream home used to be lower than ideal and surely did not reside up to the hype from the promoting brochures.

Resolve into story that this house is in the price fluctuate of conventional underground properties. It is a ways no longer a staged million-dollar present home that which that you can glance in many brochures and net sites. Our underground home designate terminate to $150,000 to manufacture and produce back in 1986, which is above the median designate of a worn home in our boom in the 1980s.

Here is our factual memoir. I invent no longer desire to indicate that everyone underground properties are esteem ours. I genuinely hope that they’re no longer. Did we salvage a lemon? If that is so, we now have not any longer been ready to scheme lemonade.

Here are about a of the issues we now have lag into:

  1. Leaks
  2. Floods correct through heavy rains
  3. Miniature landscaping
  4. Cracks correct through earthquakes
  5. Not easy and dear repairs
  6. Fixed mildew
  7. Depreciating price
  8. Pests
  9. Contributors invade our privacy

1. It Leaks!

I mediate the invent of the house is section of the misfortune. The dome construction on a hillside could per chance furthermore scheme the home more vulnerable. The misfortune started in what appears to be like a immoral combination of concrete on the west side of the dome that serves as our immense room.

A year and a half after our procure—and wouldn’t you comprehend it, correct during the Christmas holidays—a diminutive, moist space looked in the ceiling over the couch. Then one other space looked, then one other. We known as the manufacturer, Terra Dome, and had been told that our home used to be built by a franchise in Oklahoma that went out of alternate. Valid our perfect fortune! The particular closing franchise used to be in Missouri, and it assumed no responsibility for damages to our home.

They did “genuinely feel sorry for us,” and mentioned they’d send materials so as that shall we restore the leak ourselves. They shipped us a field of bentonite clay, the fundamental ingredient in worn cat litter. We had been naïve sufficient to dig up section of the home, set up the glorified cat litter, and replace the dirt (glance photo). Most of us know what liquid-soaked cat litter is esteem, and we learned that it undoubtedly is no longer recommended to construct it on a roof in a moist climate.

After the cat litter trip, we known as doubtlessly every concrete restore company in the phone book, nonetheless none had been moving sight at it. We gave up and tried to repair it ourselves by ejecting dear liquid epoxy into the holes and cracks from all the way during the home. That used to be a droll trip. Our makes an try merely rerouted the water farther along the dome and into the adjacent half dome, which lined the grasp bedroom and stroll-in closet.

Trying to find the source of one leak.

Searching out for the source of one leak.

We doubtlessly have the correct home in Arkansas with stalactites on the ceiling. Truly. Red earth from the halt of our home runs down the ceiling and front room wall. I’ve joked about building a waterfall in the front room to divert the water.

Despite all repairs, the leaks persevered to unfold. While making the repairs, we found that the home had skilled leaks even earlier than we sold it. The old owner had jack-legged the repairs and smoothed them over correct long sufficient to sell off the home on naïve investors esteem us.

We consulted an lawyer, nonetheless he mentioned the discovery came too gradual to support the old owner or the realtor, who lived round the corner and will must have known about the leaks, to blame or price them with fraud. (By the manner, the realtor doubtlessly could per chance not have cared much less about a unfounded sale price because he moved to Mexico in an instant thereafter and died a year later.)

Would insurance repair it? Not with the total pre-present issues that had been hidden from us. The specifications for the home boom that the pores and skin is a “tar modified polyurethane elastomer that is utilized as a liquid and forms a bonded synthetic rubber membrane… [that] will enable the membrane to span customary shrinkage cracks up to 1/16 slither.”

We found it to be as efficient as the Bentonite clay. A same outdated home settles more than 1/16 slither in its lifetime, which renders a glorified tar roof mainly ineffective. These same specifications arrive with a disclaimer at the tip. In our case, evidently the subcontractor would had been the one legally liable. Would not give an owner powerful self belief, does it?

We installed bentonite clay to prevent leaks from the corner above the atrium.

We installed bentonite clay to prevent leaks from the corner above the atrium.

In 2010, I found a roof artisan who made an estimate of $100,000 to restore the roof, nonetheless he mentioned he wasn’t particular he wished to sort out the job. We told him that we owned a backhoe and would draw terminate away the layers of dirt and insulation ourselves. Unfortunately, he died with out phrase most spirited two weeks after making the estimate.

Around the identical time, cracks started acting in the floors, which may per chance be undoubtedly spreading to the partitions and ceilings. It may per chance per chance designate our retirement savings to scheme the compulsory repairs, and at this level, I’m no longer particular it is a ways even repairable. We owe powerful much less on it than the price of repairs, so we are talking about paying it off and walking out.

Front steps leading to another staircase off the landing.

Front steps ensuing in one other staircase off the touchdown.

2. It floods!

Region makes the total distinction. I carry out no longer declare building on a hillside, nonetheless whenever you happen to carry out, be particular which that you can furthermore have an outsized drainage machine. Water can’t drift underneath our concrete slab esteem it may per chance per chance most likely per chance with a house built on a foundation, and the French drains in the atrium can no longer address a deluge.

One particularly stormy evening, a torrent poured into the front atrium from the avenue above the home and flooded the immense room. We in the slay gave up mopping and correct opened the doors. We swept water out the back doors as a river poured during the front door. Fortunately, the carpet had been removed years up to now.

It wasn’t any consolation to hear one in all our neighbors deliver that the bottom floor of their two-memoir home flooded, and so they had been forced to reside upstairs for a pair of months except repairs had been made to their home. We invent no longer have an upstairs to switch into. Who would have thought to cast off flood insurance for a house excessive upon a hillside?

Spider lilies are the crowning glory of the entrance to our underground home.

Spider lilies are the final touch of the entrance to our underground home.

3. Now we have diminutive landscaping.

The rooftop and front yard boom had been landscaped once we sold the home. We even installed a sprinkler machine to support the areas watered. On the opposite hand, when the leaks started, the sprinkler couldn’t be passe. We removed bushes and plants with deep roots and shut down the sprinkler machine. The panorama is now shocking and unattractive.

So much of the plants died, including three huge shrubs, the roses, and the hardy hibiscus. We replaced the shrubs with a bulb bed. We removed two intellectual pine bushes, a golden chain tree, two crape myrtles, and a huge Russian olive bush because we feared the muse systems would grow into the roof and trigger more issues. We could no longer counsel that you phrase the latest pattern and plant a rooftop backyard in sod—ever!

4. Earthquake-proof? Ha!

The home used to be advertised as “earthquake proof” nonetheless inside, we undoubtedly feel tremors that invent no longer registered in the neighborhood on the Richter scale. The home used to be frail sufficient to be settled once we sold it, so we suspect mini-tremors could per chance furthermore be cracking it aside. On the 2d we support our fingers crossed for an earthquake huge sufficient to register to happen so we can present it is a ways inflicting the cracking. I know I shouldn’t humorous memoir about earthquakes, nonetheless THAT the insurance would pay for.

My husband building the third deck with hot tub.

My husband building the third deck with scorching bath.

5. There may per chance be diminutive or no access for some repairs.

The ductwork is manufactured from customary materials that don’t support up underground. The duct boots have rusted through and wish replacing. We’re no longer particular if we are even ready to access the ductwork to join the contemporary boots. The plenum of galvanized steel rusted through after 12 years and collapsed into the outlet, taking the central HVAC unit with it.

We replaced the plenum with one built with ¼ in. stainless-steel. Since no sheet steel shop in the boom would manufacture a stainless-steel plenum, we customary and built it ourselves. Then, we installed a bigger central AC and blower, entirely forgoing the central heating unit. Fortuitously, my husband’s repertoire of expertise allowed him to address the set up, so it designate us lower than $2,000 total.

Back of house in autumn. The hill is too dangerously steep to landscape.

Abet of home in autumn. The hill is too dangerously steep to panorama.

6. We fight mildew continuously.

The naturally excessive humidity on this boom causes mildew issues in worn properties, nonetheless combine that with the water leaks and seepage issues and we now have Mold Metropolis. We are bosom buddies with Clorox bleach solution and copper sulfate, nonetheless rapidly, we will pray to interchange some drywall.

Entirely about a days happen that we aren’t operating the AC or the warmth in an strive to counteract the humidity. We installed a humidistat on our central AC so it may per chance per chance most likely per chance turn on when the humidity reaches a particular level. Besides, we lag a dehumidifier on days of especially excessive humidity or once we can salvage away with it comfort-wise.

On a 75-stage day in April, the AC used to be operating time beyond law, and the temperature in the house used to be 67 degrees. I was bundled up in my Snuggie with my two cats, looking to support warmth. (Now we have a 19-year-frail tabby, a thin, minute bundle of bones—and that isn’t healthy for her.)

Anyway, the subsequent day after work, the temperature had fallen to 65 degrees, and the humidity peaceable hadn’t lowered to 60%. Humidity in an underground home desires to remain at no more than 50%, nonetheless I salvage nosebleeds at that level and draw terminate a sight at to support ours at 60%. I told my husband to both turn off the (expletive) AC or turn on the gas logs. He turned off the AC. In the previous, we now have found it valuable to lag each and each concurrently.

We discover that correct through extreme temperatures, our heating and cooling bills lag a chunk bigger than a worn, nicely-insulated home of similar dimension. My mother’s home—located 100 miles north of us with approximately the identical boom of heated and cooled home as ours—undoubtedly passe 30% much less vitality than our underground home.

In the summertime, our huge south-going through home windows let in an unique amount of warmth no matter the roof overhang, and we exercise heavy shades to cut back the solar warmth. We furthermore found that in 90-110-stage weather, the ground all the way during the home gets genuinely scorching, which heats the concrete partitions and transfers the warmth inside. I counsel no longer believing the propaganda about being ready to make exercise of smaller AC units because the home stayed scorching all summer except we upsized our AC-condensing unit and blower. We replaced the frail 2-ton condenser and blower with 3-heaps.

Our cold cat trying to stay warm while we dehumidify the house.

Our chilly cat looking to remain warmth whereas we dehumidify the home.

I don’t declare electrical heating in an underground home at all because it does no longer dehumidify the air. It will work in a dry boom nonetheless no longer here. We now exercise a ventilated gas heater in the immense room as our sole source of warmth. Yeah, yeah, I know—gas is a no-no in an underground home, nonetheless in our trip, electrical heating used to be correct unaffordable. After we first moved in, we ran the electrical machine for 2 weeks, terminate to froze off our tail feathers, and paid double what we had been paying for pure gas warmth in our old home of 1,000 sq. feet.

Attributable to the extend in warmth transference to the soil and concrete partitions, our heating and cooling seasons most incessantly open up about six weeks after the frequent seasons open up. Here is no longer an field—correct a fact. Web say visitors are surprised to safe us operating warmth in Would per chance per chance honest or the air-con in gradual November. They notify that we are “whipping the horse and hollering whoa” once we lag warmth and air at the identical time.

That that you can furthermore be questioning, “Why aren’t we the utilization of solar vitality? After we first sold the home, we didn’t have the cash to make investments in solar. Now, we don’t glance the practicality of a retrofit to a house that is falling aside.

And talking of “retrofit,” a fully concrete and rebar house is terminate to very no longer most likely to retrofit unless the occupant desires to sacrifice a window or two to lag hoses or wires and fittings through.

Back of the house showing outside greenhouse and decks

Abet of the home showing exterior greenhouse and decks

7. Our home depreciated in price.

The depreciation used to be grisly! Our home depreciated quicker than a mobile home or an automobile. We could per chance furthermore peaceable had been forewarned once we had been ready to cast off the home for $45,000 lower than the price to manufacture it. All the way during the housing boom, we watched the assorted properties in the neighborhood develop in price—many doubling in designate—whereas we sat here retaining the same of rent receipts.

A mama groundhog and her brood tore up this flowerbed, but we don't have the heart to evict them.

A mama groundhog and her brood tore up this flowerbed, nonetheless we invent no longer have the coronary heart to evict them.

8. I desire anyone had told us to support our pest support a watch on contract.

Each our realtor and our insurance agent told us that we had no must renew the termite contract after we closed on the home. “It is a ways a concrete home, and termites don’t use concrete,” they mentioned. Ten years later, I leaned towards a wall in the diminutive lavatory, and my hand went during the paneling. We found that the wall covering had been eaten away from the inside, leaving correct the vinyl sheathing on the exterior.

The next year the wood wall below our kitchen window going during the atrium needed to salvage replaced. Any wood on the home used to be a magnet for termites, and so they had been fortunately gnawing away the total woodwork that touched the ground and the concrete. We replaced all damaged wood with treated trees and soaked it in creosote for factual measure.

Varied critters adore our home too. Now we have more than our section of spiders and centipedes, especially in the toilets. On two separate occasions, a salamander used to be found swimming in the lavatory in the grasp bath, and we are peaceable mystified as to the way it bought there. Did the identical salamander return or used to be it a clear one? Now we have a septic tank, so how did it salvage there? I desire we knew.

Our home has been invaded by fireplace ants, and troops of mice safe us to be a haven. A groundhog took up situation on high of a bedroom dome—digging up my favorite flower bed in the task—and raised a family. Her young of us are undoubtedly digging up the dirt floor in our greenhouse. We will pray to cast off a bigger reside-trap or replace our gradual chow-pei.

9. Contributors invade our privacy.

This came as a shock. Some of us treat our home esteem a public park. The same of us that could per chance by no manner invade your front yard or sit for your front porch with out an invitation draw terminate without any consideration that there may per chance be rarely any visible property above ground! Nervy neighbors exercise our roof as a striking inexperienced—or a sand trap. Now we have a gallon bucket of golf balls they’ve misplaced—retrieved mostly from the woods below the home.

Snowy scene from our third deck.

Snowy scene from our third deck.

5 Issues We Loved About Our Underground Home

I don’t desire of us to salvage the impression that this article is most spirited a rant. I carry out dearly LOVE residing underground. I’m correct looking to warn of us of the issues that the advertisers don’t desire you to know so they won’t salvage unrealistic expectations the manner we did.

We trip so many issues about residing underground:

1. The faithful, exact feeling correct through a storm.

We deem tornadoes from our back door as they phrase their customary route along the Arkansas River. We are each and each professional weather spotters, so we are nicely attentive to the hazard of suction if a twister comes terminate, and we present out have a thought in case one ventures too terminate our home.

2. We admire the floor thought and would substitute minute or no about it.

The thought permits for enormous home windows or double home windows in every room that enable in more pure gentle than most worn properties. Most of us are surprised that an underground home lets in more gentle than their worn properties carry out.

3. The house is terminate to noise-proof.

As an alternative of for the fellow down the hill who on occasion revs his loud truck engine. Neighborhood parties and avenue noise from above by no manner bother us.

4. The cats genuinely trip residing here.

So did our dog, who sadly died at terminate to age 14. I mediate they undoubtedly assert to their ancestors who lived in caves and underground burrows. After they had been young, they freely roamed the hillside, nonetheless after some coyotes invaded the boom between our home and the river, all pets had been confined to the home.

5. Now we have an atrium fleshy of frogs and rescued field turtles exterior.

We trip them so powerful that we installed a diminutive backyard pond for them. The turtles and the totally different sorts of frogs and toads section the pond with out a issues. A pair of king snakes—one in all which undoubtedly permits petting—have furthermore taken up situation in our rock steps above the atrium.

Closing Options

Attain the positives outweigh the total issues we arrive all the way through? No. If we ever salvage rid of this albatross, would we ever once more draw terminate into consideration residing in an underground home? Indubitably. Nonetheless we would reasonably catch the gap and supervise the construction every step of the manner. And, oh certain, it may per chance per chance most likely per chance must be in a dry climate!

Ground Opinion of the Home

Current floor plan with minor corrections in blue ink

Most modern floor thought with minor corrections in blue ink

Floor plan with changes in red that I would make. Moving doors and small wall would restore to original plan with master suite.

Ground thought with adjustments in crimson that I’d scheme. Transferring doors and diminutive wall would restore to new thought with grasp bedroom.

Update 2020: Adjustments We Would Invent to the Ground Opinion

I genuinely have bought requests to witness a floor thought of our home. Then a reader requested to witness the adjustments we would scheme if I built one other home by this thought. The 2d thought contains the adjustments marked in crimson. After I first posted this floorplan, I did not tag that the narrow construction off the kitchen boom is above ground, and the frequent owner expanded it correct into a 14 x 16 feet. combo greenhouse/screenhouse. He kept the dirt floor and undoubtedly tried to grow plants in the soil. On the present time the bushes have grown up around it and it is a ways too shady to make exercise of for plants excluding for the iciness. Our chickens have confiscated it for their home, and carry out reasonably nicely in there, since we now have abandoned our plans to scheme it correct into a sunroom.

First, we would switch the HVAC machine from the guts of the immense room to 1 in all the closets in the utility room between the bedrooms (arrow signifies). I’d go the closet in the immense room for added storage that is most likely to be misplaced in the utility room. The cause I’d relocate the HVAC unit is because noise of the fan and motor interfere with our watching tv or carrying on a dialog in the front room section of the home. The particular dilemma to here’s that in chilly weather, the fan unit attracts in warmth air from the heating range on the bogus wall and moves all of it the way during the home.

The 2d substitute we would scheme is to switch the entrances to the bedroom and hall lavatory (crimson square). Our most contemporary thought has the bedroom door all the way during the hallway ethical at the bath on the assorted side of the wall. The new door to the bedroom used to be undoubtedly at the hall halt of the closet, making the two rooms correct into a non-public grasp bedroom. I’m no longer particular precisely how this used to be organized since I’ve by no manner viewed the brand new thought. (Brush aside the vertical line in the bedroom.) The closet door is furthermore in the diminutive hallway on the side wall. The new owner changed the thought to scheme the bath a separate hall bath. As the thought is now, there may per chance be rarely any grasp bedroom in the house.

This article is correct and factual to the correct of the creator’s files. Thunder is for informational or entertainment purposes most spirited and does no longer substitute for private counsel or professional advice in alternate, financial, honest, or technical matters.

Questions & Answers

Ask: Your situation seems as even supposing it is no longer entirely underground. Don’t you watched an earth-sheltered atrium would be greater, per chance one thing more along the traces of a bomb safe haven?

Reply: Our house is entirely underground as a ways as the roof and aspects of the home trail. We have thought about covering the atrium, nonetheless covering it esteem a bomb safe haven would block any gentle coming into two bedrooms, one in all which we exercise for our situation of business, and block ventilation coming in from the front. It may per chance per chance must be entirely sealed, including keeping the exterior door closed to support the water from pouring down from avenue level. Nonetheless then we would want to set up French drains and re-route the water all the way during the home. Upright now a minimal of the drains in the atrium carry out work excluding for astonishing deluges.

The cover option would be more most likely if the first owner installed a pair of skylights in the roof. It is a ways too gradual to carry out that now on story of the rebar frame. Also, the atrium is the correct convenient access to our home. The long winding driveway retains us from coming in during the garage. (I’ve slipped and fallen on my back looking to navigate the driveway on foot, and as I’ve mentioned in the article, we can no longer force our autos out of the garage and up it.)

We have furthermore thought about building a shell of a building on high of the total home, nonetheless that is most likely to be about 3,000 sq. feet. of roof on my own if we lined the atrium, too. It is a ways correct a sad invent, sad boom, and shoddy construction that does no longer must support on present. We had been powerful youthful once we sold it and correct did not mediate it through. A couple of chums warned us that underground properties had been impractical in our boom and would leak. We could per chance furthermore peaceable have listened to them.

Ask: It seems esteem any these issues are from sad invent, sad construction, and sad ventilation. Recognize you thought about including an air-to-air exchanger, or eliminating the dirt on the roof and sealing it with more moderen products?

Reply: Sure, we now have thought about all that, nonetheless it undoubtedly would designate more than the home designate. Please present that I mentioned listed here that we had one estimate for $100,000 to attract terminate away the soil and add a brand contemporary pores and skin to the roof. We are retired and must not particular that shall we present you with the cash for to pay for it on our retirement earnings.

Ask: Did you make exercise of clay high soil and 10% slope?

Reply: I’m sorry, nonetheless your query is ambiguous. I’d must know where you are talking about, below the home or on high. I will reply that we did not manufacture the home. It used to be six years frail once we sold it, and the owner did not present us with a soil yarn. As I mentioned in the article, the home used to be built on a hill that used to be measured at a 45-stage attitude. Then a mound used to be built up to scheme a level building floor on which to manufacture the home. I included a photograph of the home taken from down the hill that reveals the steepness of the slope and the back of the home with connected greenhouse. That that you can sight at it for the slope. I invent no longer know what the builder passe. In our boom builders exercise donafil, nonetheless I genuinely have not any proof that it used to be passe here.

Ask: Recognize you made up our minds whenever you happen to will stay or manufacture one other underground home?

Reply: At this level, we now have not any longer made a name. We now have the home paid off, and the weather is correct now getting chilly sufficient for us to try to work on it. Now we have agreed to scheme one more effort to repair it inside a budget. If we invent no longer be triumphant this time, I mediate we are in a position to sight for a house on a lake or someplace with a level lot. At our age, I invent no longer desire to utilize the rest of our lives struggling each and each financially and physically with looking to repair this one. I’d reasonably utilize the cash on a worn home that we can with out effort restore or hire anyone at an more cost effective designate if the job is more than we desire to sort out. We have remodeled two worn properties in the previous for lower than $40,000 every by doing the work ourselves. I mediate we each and each agree that we now want to downsize.

Ask: After studying your memoir, I did a chunk analysis and found BBB complaints towards Terra Dome. I furthermore found complaints from assorted net sites where Terra Dome had no longer paid for steel passe in peoples properties and who had been being threatened with liens by local suppliers. Would you counsel Terra Dome at all?

Reply: Completely no longer! I did not know that, and thanks for telling me. Nonetheless their refusing to face in the back of my home and the discomfort that we now have skilled in the 25 years that we now have had to reside in it may per chance per chance most likely per chance have made my reply the identical even whenever you happen to had no longer pointed this out.

Ask: What is donafil?

Reply: Donafil is truly the most incessantly passe field cloth in our boom to stabilize a construction boom on which a building is to be built. It is a ways my belief that it is a ways ground up or damaged up concrete. The donafil could per chance furthermore be honest, or it may per chance per chance most likely per chance furthermore have diminutive or huge chunks of damaged concrete. An boom that has been stuffed with most spirited catch dirt is no longer as stable as an boom with the donafil in it and would be more field to settling or washing away.

Ask: I glance how your property has immense views and an total lot pure lighting fixtures that arrive from it being built on a hill with many enormous home windows, nonetheless would no longer any home built on a hill with many enormous home windows have the identical revenue of watch and Gentle? Perchance I’m misunderstanding nonetheless you seem to be announcing an underground home could per chance offer that more than an above-ground home. Can you indicate that more?

Reply: No doubt, I was looking to boom correct the bogus. Most of us have that an underground home must be darkish and dreary. The first time my mother walked into my front room, she exclaimed, “Oh, it is so gentle. I thought it’d be darkish and I was dreading coming down and visiting.” I deliver sorry if I did not scheme my level clear in the article, nonetheless I was looking to boom that my home could per chance compete with any above-ground home in the boom of pure gentle. I wasn’t looking to scheme my home good in lighting fixtures to above-ground properties. On the opposite hand, I could add, whenever you are a young person, that many properties of the 1970s and 80s tended to have diminutive home windows on story of the colossal leap in the prices of electricity. Seemingly the most valuable older properties had been remodeled to set up diminutive, most incessantly diminutive home windows to cut trail into reverse on heating and cooling costs. Since my home used to be built all the way during the tip of that duration, in some ways, it may per chance per chance most likely per chance furthermore be good in pure gentle to its “chums.” My neighbors (I reside in a subdivision in the county) on my side of the avenue overlooking the identical watch, have huge glass patio doors in their properties, nonetheless most of them have smaller home windows. So that you glance, even even supposing I did not mean it that manner, it genuinely could per chance furthermore be taken esteem that. Thank you for your query. I will return and revisit my commentary. Perchance it wants rewriting for clarification.

Ask: It is a ways candy to know that Terra Dome doesn’t stand in the back of their name, franchises, subcontractors or anything else for that matter. After seeing their lack of consumer provider, I won’t be spending my cash with them. When you happen to had to carry out it over, who would you trail at the side of?

Reply: I invent no longer know that we’d exercise any particular builder. My husband is an engineer, so he would invent the home, then we doubtlessly would act as our like contractor and hire revered local contractors and subcontractors. My son is building an underground home in Texas, and that’s what he’s doing.

© 2012 Doris James MizBejabbers

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on July 27, 2020:

Pete, I’m very cheerful you doubtlessly did. No one could per chance furthermore peaceable want to struggle through what we now had been through with ours. Thanks for studying.

pete on July 22, 2020:

Sorry, you bought a lemon. Mine’s immense!

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on July 12, 2020:

Jason, you will mediate here’s ridiculous, nonetheless we like a backhoe. My husband sold one witness unseen, and it is a ways too huge and heavy to possibility striking it on the home. I told him to sell it and take away a smaller one, nonetheless it undoubtedly has been sitting in the yard for the final 15 years.

I’ve lived in oil field nation and there may per chance be rarely any comparability to the humidity in Arkansas. No, I invent no longer mediate that could per chance work. In particular now that we now have rain so laborious that it seems more esteem a snowstorm than a rainstorm. We correct invent no longer must be in an underground home in what has now became the tropics. Thank you for studying and commenting.

Jason Steward on July 08, 2020:

I work in the oil field and we exercise plastic liners below our seperator units and line our frac ponds with them. Would per chance per chance per chance you no longer correct rent a backhoe for per week, train the construction, exercise some spray-on foam for insulation (we keep that below ground to divert underground water in ditches and it is furthermore passe as insulation in attics), then cover the foam with one in all these pond liners? Appears esteem a easy repair for leaks. Perchance which that you can attend the mildew by including interior ductwork. Temperature differences room-to-room causes mildew.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 26, 2020:

Dave, I had no longer heard of this building manner, so I checked it out. I esteem this thought. Now, I’m peaceable no longer so particular about building a everlasting one here in soggy Arkansas. I grew up in the Ozarks, an boom riddled with caves, and I saw the consequences of water operating and dripping through stones, especially limestone. Water dissolves unfired clay, which is why we invent no longer exercise adobe in moist climates. Even our fired bricks insist to crumble in 80 to 100 years. I’m no longer particular what cob is. Cement, per chance?

I lived in Fresh Mexico for a pair of years, and I’d surely draw terminate into consideration building one there. I had a neighbor who grew up in her grandmother’s huge adobe home near Carlsbad, and he or she mentioned it used to be peaceable in factual shape after terminate to 100 years.

I spent a broad range of time on this web space and saw some that mentioned the bags had been fired. I wonder how they did this. Those resembled mosaic tile and had been reasonably intellectual. I carry out have this vogue is rather more perfect than about a of the bogus housing I’ve viewed, esteem the ground-up tires. I’ve heard that the rubber deteriorates after several years. I furthermore wonder about the permanency of straw bales or styrofoam blocks. Thank you for studying my article and acquainting me with Mr. Khalili’s manner of building.

Dave Huttner on June 26, 2020:

I mediate you are correct to attain that underground properties are no longer applicable for moist climates. In these climates you are combating a continuous war with the water and — no matter what the invent or construction — the water will in the slay use. What carry out you watched of the superadobe properties? Earthbag properties similar to these built and designed by Nadir Khalily and CalEarth? Appears to me that they desires to be OK above ground, an total lot clay in the salvage mix and cob, on a slight elevation with French drain and lime over the cob. Upright?

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 11, 2020:

You’re very welcome, Lindsay.

Lindsay Haase on June 11, 2020:

Thank you for sharing the floor thought!! L

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 10, 2020:

Sizable comment, Damien. I especially adore your thought about beeswax. LOL Nonetheless I’m worried we now have sufficient bugs, and I’m no longer particular that beeswax would no longer attract even more. And I mediate per chance we present out desire a pool builder in preference to a roof artisan. Severely, I mediate it used to be a extraordinarily sad decision to come all the way through an underground home on the side of a hill after which manufacture up the soil to unfounded it to be underground. I’m no longer particular there may per chance be any solution that is most likely to be inside financial cause. We correct let our hearts overrule our heads.

BTW my husband’s grandfather used to be a winemaker. I will relay your suggestion to him. LOL Thank you for your silly comment.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 10, 2020:

Lindsay, first thanks for your comment. I genuinely have posted the latest floor thought (with adjustments the owner made that must not mirrored on it) and a 2d one which shows adjustments I’d scheme. I surely would esteem a grasp bedroom reasonably than two toilets that invent no longer join to a bedroom. 2nd, the AC is amazingly noisy and it is a ways complicated to chat over it or to hear the TV situation. In every other case, I esteem the floor thought.

Damien Ramos on June 09, 2020:

Thanks for your undoubtedly unprecedented article on the realities of an underground home. Despite the hype, it makes so powerful sense. Sounds esteem reasonably than a roof artisan, you’d desire a pool builder to carry out repairs …or anyone who understands the water, humidity, ventilation, and drainage factors of an indoor aquatic facility (no pun supposed).

As an alternative of the total pool restore solutions in the market, one thing I’ve found in going through continuously moist cement would be sealing the partitions with beeswax (desires to be melted), the identical manner that winemakers seal cement urns …pure. That that you can continuously elevate honey bees whenever you happen to’d esteem each and each beeswax and an efficient manner to support of us off your property–lol. 😉

Preserve dauntless–thanks once more for sharing your brave lunge in the eighth wonder of the arena!

Lindsay Haase on June 09, 2020:

Whats up! You mentioned that you “adore the floor thought and would substitute minute or no about it”. Attain which that you can furthermore have any photos of the floor thought that you is also moving to section? What would you substitute whenever you happen to could per chance? Thanks! L

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on Would per chance per chance honest 27, 2020:

Sure, you scheme sense, Michael, nonetheless don’t forget that our house is now thought-about “an frail home” and heaps of improvements and adjustments had been made in the invent and materials passe in building underground properties. There genuinely had been no longer “earth-sheltered housing circles” when it used to be built. There had been about a minute “pop-up” properties in the 1960-1980s, esteem this one.

Also I wrote this article terminate to 10 years up to now, and it used to be how I felt then. I invent no longer have the ambition to rewrite it to fit in with at present’s norm. Truly, I invent no longer even know what at present’s norm is since I invent no longer lag in these “earth sheltered housing circles” of which you write. Where are they, at the least? HubPages adjustments the date on the article any time I scheme any roughly up to this level comment so it may per chance per chance most likely per chance appear like a brand contemporary article nonetheless it undoubtedly is rarely.

Michael McKinley on Would per chance per chance honest 26, 2020:

All or loads of the factors you command about are widely acknowledged in earth-sheltered housing circles. All are with out effort engineered for prior to building. The 2 most spirited issues are lack of sturdy bedrock below the muse. And sad drainage support a watch on measures. None of which you knew about. If the tone of your article used to be “be cautious for these capability factors” it’d be more correct than what you wrote. And albeit most investors know that drainage is compulsory and an engineer could per chance furthermore peaceable know which manner water flows, and an atrium level with the floor is known as a lake in most circles.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on March 16, 2020:

Two factors minimize down on our vitality efficiency: 1. enormous southern going through home windows and patio doors that work esteem a magnifying glass and let in warmth in the summer. Changing these with contemporary contemporary glass could medication the misfortune. 2. Central warmth. Now we have already remedied this by eliminating the electrical central unit and the utilization of a Vermont Castings heater in the greatroom. Pointless to claim we invent no longer have even warmth all the way during the home, nonetheless that is a sacrifice we had been moving to scheme. We converted this historical wood range to gas, and because it is a ways ventilated, we now have not any longer had any issues with it. We weren’t ready to safe sufficient wood to salvage us during the iciness.

Centerpoint has had some designate increases in the old few years. Closing year used to be a extraordinarily gentle iciness, so our gas bill to warmth, cook and lag an on-inquire water heater ran from $90 to $110 a year. This year is cooler and wetter, so it is a ways costing more. I mediate our final bill used to be about $160. We lag dehumidifiers loads of the time excluding once we had been operating central air, and our costs for electricity most incessantly lag from $125 to $300 a month. Electrical costs by no manner lag lower than $120, so it is a ways our fundamental utility expense. We warmth and chilly about 2,000 sq. feet. of a 2,576 sq feet home. Hope this helps.

Anthony Bucci on March 16, 2020:

Whats up, we reside in Arkansas as nicely. How vitality ambiance recommended is your underground home? Thank you!

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on February 13, 2020:

Charles, your success would rely on where you reside and the fantastic of the work of the contractor who built it. I’m no longer aware of Formworks, so I’m in a position to no longer touch upon that. Nonetheless whenever you happen to reside in a moist boom esteem we present out, I’d counsel building one thing above ground. In a dry boom, I’d deliver, “trail for it!” Thanks for the comment.

Charles on February 13, 2020:

I adore you posting this. I once thought-about a Formworks home down the road. I genuinely have thought-about that moisture could per chance furthermore no longer remain exterior of the residing home. Any person recently mentioned that concrete continuously cracks. So many issues can trail immoral correct through construction. Sorry, you had this trip, the opinion that is immense even supposing.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on January 21, 2020:

Thank you, Stefan. I will draw terminate a panicked home any day over this nightmare because it most spirited gets worse. Not lower than I understand how to send a ghost to the sunshine. I adore your comment.

Stefan Seville on January 20, 2020:

Wow ! Don’t know which is worse! A panicked home or your true

Night mires!!!! I most incessantly would have factual answers to immoral properties nonetheless

Your misfortune stuns me!!! Anyway the total most spirited for you and your loved ones.

Nonetheless it undoubtedly does attend me and others ! Thank you! My prayers to you!

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on January 09, 2020:

Goodness, Glennis, 1767! Entirely about a constructions exist in the U.S. which may per chance be that frail. It is doubtlessly because most of our constructions are made of wood and could per chance furthermore withstand most spirited so powerful getting older. I genuinely envy her.

This article used to be written several years up to now, so since then, of us have in the slay stopped trespassing. We invent no longer have the issues that we had the first few years we moved in, a minimal of I am hoping now to not witness anymore.

It is tornadoes that we invent no longer want to be troubled about. I invent no longer mediate this home would withstand an earthquake totally, perched into the side of the hill that it is a ways.

Currently we are having to dart out the unfounded wall in the back of the cupboards in the fundamental lavatory because the 33-year-frail plumbing has failed. I’m correct cheerful it is a ways a unfounded wall. I invent no longer know what we would carry out if the pipes had been in the concrete. I will genuinely be cheerful to salvage that loo back.

I did not impress you had been having frequent floods where you reside. We are undoubtedly having our section of them here. My sympathies trail to everyone experiencing them since I genuinely have first-hand files of the implications. Thank you for studying my article and your spirited comment.

Glen Rix from UK on January 06, 2020:

Oh, my goodness. What a woeful sage of back perfect fortune. The property must be a relentless source of effort to you.

Here in minute England, land for non-public manufacture is fairly scarce and dear – including this to the price of architects fees and building costs would scheme this sort of house unaffordable for all nonetheless the totally-heeled. Nonetheless a minimal of the occupants would no longer must effort about earthquakes. Water ingress would be a effort – we seem to salvage to this point more heavy and prolonged rain at present – which that you can furthermore have read about the latest frequent floods.

I’m in a position to no longer have that of us have the cheek to make exercise of your roof as a striking inexperienced – have you ever tried a No Trespassing signal?

My sister has a house built correct into a hillside and has had a broad range of issues with damp, and coffee torrents of water streaming down the lane in front of her frontage – nonetheless the home used to be built in 1767, so I’m guessing it may per chance per chance most likely per chance outlive her.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on November 02, 2019:

John, we now have not any longer carried out anything yet. After I retired in 2016, we thought we would salvage ethical on it, nonetheless health issues prevent our doing so. We are about ready to open up once more. My husband peaceable desires to first try forcing concrete into the holes, nonetheless the subsequent step would be doing what you are thinking about. Your situation is about the scale of mine. I genuinely have some questions for you, please. Would you keep the soil back below a worn roof after you’ve sprayed on insulation? Is it an rectangular shape esteem most properties or a U shape esteem ours? Attain which that you can furthermore have any estimates of what the price would be of a turnkey job? And would you section the figure with me? That that you can per chance per chance email me whenever you happen to prefer. Completely it may per chance per chance most likely per chance no longer designate more than the $100,000 estimate that roof artisan made to us correct to attract terminate away the soil, add concrete around and into the leaks and keep the soil back. It used to be off the halt of his head, and I mediate he used to be correct blowing smoke. I’m in a position to head $100,000 if the job comprises a worn roof.

I’m genuinely happy to hear from you because your climate is so equivalent to ours. Thank you for your comment.

John on November 02, 2019:

We currently reside in an underground earth home furthermore, in Missouri. We had the total dirt removed two weeks up to now. Our house is 2500 sq. feet., we are thinking about striking a worn shingle food on high and having spray foam utilized on high of the concrete roof for insulation purposes. Don’t know what else to carry out. Would prefer to hear what you ended up doing with yours. Hope all is wee. Sincerely, John

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on October 27, 2019:

Neatly, I had to chortle at your reply. Not at you, nonetheless with you, nonetheless I will deliver that once we stopped these ants that had been invading the dog’s bowl, we now have not any longer had anymore issues with them. The termite misfortune used to be with the identical same outdated home materials esteem paneling, wood facings, and drywall that termites use on worn properties. I was correct warning of us now to not fall their termite insurance policies correct because they had a concrete home underground. The termites invent no longer use the concrete or any of the assorted materials they disquieted away from in worn properties. Nonetheless I draw terminate your level. At one time these properties had been more cost effective to manufacture, nonetheless now they could per chance furthermore furthermore be more dear, a minimal of in the short lag. And a huge misfortune is obtaining financing for one and furthermore insurance. Thank you for your immense comment.

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on October 25, 2019:

Here is important. Esteem you, I thought at one time that I’d adore an underground home. The particular thing that stopped me used to be finances. Restful, I reside in California where it is a ways a ways dryer nonetheless we present out have issues with termites and fireside ants here. No thanks.



Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on September 29, 2019:

Thank you Deborah. Readers similar to you’re the cause I wrote this article. I am hoping to alert of us to most likely issues to allow them to salvage rid of them earlier than they happen. I invent no longer desire to discourage someone from building an underground home.

Deborah Demander Reno from First Wyoming, then THE WORLD on September 29, 2019:

This article used to be spell binding. I’ve thought-about residing in an underground home, built into the side of a hill. Now I know what to sight for and what to attract terminate into consideration earlier than I commit. Thank you for writing.


Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on September 15, 2019:

Thank you for your comment, Ed. The avenue already has a optimistic curb, nonetheless it undoubtedly is rarely present to enable us access to our driveway, which we present out park in. I invent no longer know where you reside, nonetheless with the deluges we salvage in Central Arkansas now, the water doubtlessly would leap the curb anyway. I esteem your thought of raising the atrium partitions by 2 feet. Now we have undoubtedly thought-about the greenhouse option. To this level, we now have not any longer dominated it out.

Ed on September 15, 2019:

In my opinion I’d lag a excessive curb next to the avenue to devert water operating down the avenue away out of your property. I’d have the atrium partitions raised 2 feet the total manner around after which keep a greenhouse over it with a door going during the avenue. The inside stairs would must be raised and elevate the out side ground level all the way during the atrium and slope it away from the atrium. Upright perfect fortune.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on August 11, 2019:

Sure, James, that is my belief. I invent no longer know why an underground home would depreciate esteem a automobile or a mobile home, nonetheless that used to be our trip. Perchance it used to be on story of the aptitude for leaking or per chance because most of us invent no longer desire to reside in one. On the opposite hand, a nicely-built home underground could per chance furthermore peaceable undoubtedly support its price over a worn home that deteriorates quick attributable to weathering. Thank you for studying and commenting.

James on August 10, 2019:

Thank you for sharing your memoir/trip. From what I salvage, building contemporary is finest than shopping a pre-present underground home (UH). Nonetheless the long-term lack of appreciation price with most/all UH is deal-breaker total. Preserve striving laborious. God bless.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on August 04, 2019:

Tent camper, you are 100% correct about the fundamental entrance. That is one thing that we could per chance furthermore peaceable have realized earlier than we sold the home. I invent no longer have it’d be physically most likely to slope the earth away from the entrance on story of the invent from the halt of the hill. The perimeters would must be built up taller than the domes and confronted with a concrete wall to prevent erosion. Even though we did that, there would peaceable be a gap at the touchdown unless a water-proof gate and a levy at both side of the touchdown had been installed. Then the gate would must remain closed at all occasions on story of the popup deluges we are having ethical now. Thanks for your enter. All suggestions are liked.

tent camper on August 04, 2019:

Besides the sad new construction factors it is a ways clear from the photo of your fundamental entrance that rainwater would correct pour into your sunken entrance given the sad landscaping invent. When you happen to greater the partitions about a feet after which had the earth sloping AWAY from the entrance that would attend support the rainwater out.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on July 13, 2019:

No, it used to be built by a Terra Dome franchise out of Oklahoma, which is now out of alternate. On the present time the Terra Dome Company is in Missouri. I’m no longer aware of Monolithic Dome. I will want to envision them out. Thank you for asking.

DenThey on July 13, 2019:

Was this built by Monolithic Dome of Texas?

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on July 11, 2019:

Mary, I’m fully cheerful to hear from you. I mediate it is a ways candy that which that you can furthermore have an underground home which that you can furthermore adore and trip. Esteem you, we encountered some heating issues, nonetheless safe that the pure gas is the manner to head in ours. We did open up out with a wood range, nonetheless found it complicated to cast off sufficient wood for an total iciness season. That section mystified us because here’s a extraordinarily woodsy boom. And furthermore, as we historical, carrying in the wood used to be changing into an field.

I mediate our misfortune is attributable to three issues, 1. the gap, 2. the sad fantastic workmanship, and 3. the amount of rainfall we now have in Arkansas. The final two seasons of rainfall had been powerful in way over what they had been when I wrote this article in 2012, so the misfortune is getting worse.

We had hoped to open up on the repairs this spring, nonetheless my husband has been in very sad health, to the level of having a pacemaker installed, so I invent no longer know when he will genuinely feel robust sufficient to open up repairs. If most spirited shall we discover anyone in the neighborhood, we now have the funds to pay for them.

Iowa is rarely as moist as Arkansas, and now the twister alley appears to be like plaguing you there. If I lived there, I’d no longer hesitate to manufacture one other one. I genuinely adore this home. I correct invent no longer adore the necessities.

I desire which that you can write your like article on HubPages about your property since you find it irresistible and are most spirited having minor issues with it. I’d prefer to witness your property. Would you email me a photograph of it, please? That that you can per chance per chance email me through my profile on HubPages. Thank you for studying my article and commenting on it.

Mary on July 11, 2019:

Joyful to attain back all the way through your article. We reside in an underground home in iowa. Our home used to be built in 1980 and we bought it in 1998. We LOVE it. On the opposite hand certain it does have it is uncommon issues. All the way during the first two years we realized we could per chance not present you with the cash for to warmth it with LP so we brought our frail heavy wood burning range in to the front room and have heated with strictly wood ever since. Very economical nonetheless a broad range of labor. Finally as we age we are in a position to must seriously change to one thing else a chunk much less back-breaking.

Now we have had yarn rainfall in Iowa this year and have had a slight leak or two arrive out of essentially the most random locations nonetheless we know once the climate gets more same outdated that can stop. Now we want to lag two dehumidifiers in the spring/summer – and continuously have water on the wood range correct during the iciness to humidify the air.

A couple of years up to now we made up our minds to dig up the ‘roof’ the total manner down to the liner along the outer edge and replaced the tile that used to be up there because it had crushed below the weight and used to be inflicting water seepage into the outer rooms in the spring as the snow/ice thawed. This alleviated that misfortune nonetheless used to be a hell of a broad range of labor.

About 10 or so years up to now we bought a letter from our insurance company (that we had been with forEVER) that mentioned they had been losing our home protection – fully abruptly. They mentioned the cause that these sorts of properties had been having too many claims for water hurt. After contacting our agent we persuaded them to support us as possibilities alternatively they’d no longer cover any water hurt which used to be to be anticipated. Now we have since switched insurance firms and had been welcomed with inaugurate hands, even no matter the fact that we now have a wood burning range in our front room.

We had furthermore refinanced our home for the next hobby price several years up to now and had a minute bit tell in that the appraiser did not have anything similar in our boom to carry out an review – nonetheless given our history they proceeded anyway. I’d mediate that if we had been to head to sell and a capability buyer had to head to the bank for a worn mortgage they may be able to have disaster securing one.

There are many more queer issues we now have dealt with that I’m particular I’m forgetting – nonetheless the factual a ways outweighs the immoral in my eyes. We admire our home and the inaugurate opinion structure and no basement. Your total home windows are optimistic too and toughen a terrific watch. (We have furthermore replaced loads of the home windows and patio doors since we now had been there.) We have furthermore replaced the cedar siding with steel siding – used to be reasonably a project siding a cement home nonetheless regarded immense once we had been carried out.

We draw terminate without any consideration that when of us arrive to our home who had by no manner viewed an earth home they’re correct amazed at how ‘huge’ it is a ways in the inside.

I genuinely have enjoyed studying the comments – factual perfect fortune!

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on July 03, 2019:

DOn, thanks for studying and commenting on my article. I genuinely invent no longer desire to discourage someone from building an underground home, nonetheless I carry out support them to be cautious. When you happen to sold a hill, I’d declare building the home in one in all two locations, both on high of the hill and no longer on the side of it esteem our house is or at the bottom of it if it is no longer inclined to flooding. Upright now with all that water from OK flooding into Arkansas, I’m no longer particular I’d manufacture one at the bottom. Perchance I could per chance furthermore peaceable have explained in my article that the hill where we reside used to be terminate to concave, and attributable to this they built up the hillside so steeply to accommodate it.

The home round the corner to ours is built in the model you are thinking about, and that’s also very perfect. It seems esteem a one-memoir ranch from the front, nonetheless it undoubtedly has a fleshy bottom memoir stroll-out basement. The frequent owner once did quiz if they could per chance borrow our dehumidifier correct through a moist spell. We did not have one at the time. Nonetheless being on this hill, they bring out no longer exercise their backyard both. That is a shame because we each and each have 1/2 acre tracts.

Fresh applied sciences are making it most likely to manufacture greater, more water-proof underground properties at present. I’d draw terminate into consideration building one other if we had been 20 years youthful.

Also, unless which that you can furthermore have the cash to manufacture, please present that it is a ways sort of very no longer most likely to salvage financing on an underground home now, and insurance is an field. The mortgage companies could per chance furthermore want to rethink this because with the develop in violent storms, everyone could per chance furthermore want to head underground in due path. As a ways as insurance goes, these companies could per chance furthermore safe it more cost effective to on occasion restore an underground home leak than to interchange a worn one misplaced in a storm.

DOn on July 03, 2019:

Thank you very powerful. I had regarded at doing this in Oklahoma nonetheless after studying you put up I will want to rethink what I desire to carry out. I sold my land with the hill correct for that nonetheless could per chance furthermore manufacture a an ICF decrease section with a stroll out basement in its place. Very pretty studying and incite. I’m very sorry for your troubles

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 19, 2019:

Helaine, thanks. I hoped to present a extraordinarily true side to these properties. The selling offers most spirited the upside.

Helaine Cassarino on June 19, 2019:

You’ve carried out a extraordinarily factual job conveying your ardour with correct files.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 18, 2019:

Kirk, I regarded at the catch space and I’m in a position to let you know that our home can no longer be retrofitted esteem that because the frequent owner built it ethical on the property line on the west and the east side contains the driveway and the garage. The north terminate to abuts the avenue. Lets most spirited trail south (if shall we trail at all), and that could per chance block out the total gentle to the greatroom and a bedroom. That seems esteem a factual suggestion if we make a name to manufacture one other. Thanks.

kirkdickinson on June 18, 2019:

Here is a short write-up of the opinion that of Passive Annual Heat Storage. Scroll the total manner down to the bottom to witness a diminutive contrivance of how it is a ways waterproofed and insulated.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 17, 2019:

I will sight the book over. I thought the “umbrella” used to be correct a water-proof cover over the roof and partitions of the home. Sounds spirited. Now we have the cash to carry out most spirited one in all two issues, repair this home or cast off a brand contemporary one, so we must scheme a fundamental decision. I esteem the floor thought of our present home, and shall we by no manner present you with the cash for one other home this dimension. And proper in the time since I wrote the article, I’ve learned to adore this neighborhood.

I sincerely thanks for the suggestion. on June 17, 2019:

There may per chance be a book known as: Passive Annual Heat Storage: Bettering the Procedure of Earth Shelters, by John Hait. He has some very assorted solutions for waterproofing and insulating underground properties. Many of his solutions can be utilized to an present home esteem yours.

Assuredly he waterproofs and insulates the ground above the home in an boom extending 20 feet previous the home in every path. That creates mainly an colossal umbrella that prevents water from even coming terminate to the partitions. The insulation equalizes the seasonal temperature ebb and drift.

The book is most spirited $9.99 on Kendle. It will present you some contemporary solutions which may per chance be more cost effective to implement.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 16, 2019:

Thank you, Kevin for studying and commenting on my article. I mediate your thought for an Earthship house is a capital one. We invent no longer know what roughly weather climate substitute goes to bring, nonetheless I carry out don’t forget that Gordon Michael Scallion predicted that the boom I reside in would be lined by the Mississippi River at some level. I mediate my underground home can be on the hillside bordering the river, nonetheless it undoubtedly could no longer be excessive-ground sufficient even for that.

Even whenever you happen to reside in barren boom nation out west, esteem I did at one time, heavy seasonal rains flooded the streets because the cities did not manufacture storm sewers. I mediate you are most recommended to scheme your plans in the market free. I will give your web space a sight.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 06, 2019:

We do not have thought-about them both, sadly. Attributable to the flooding of the Arkansas River into our boom correct below our home, we are seriously thinking about spending more cash on waterproofing this one than we had planned. The home by the lake appears to be like correct a “moist” dream ethical now as these properties are being swept away. We are having to attract terminate a detour all the way during the valley to salvage to the road up our hill ethical now. Thanks for studying and commenting, Pamela.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on June 06, 2019:

Here is a minute bit a alarm memoir. Being retired at a time where existence could per chance furthermore peaceable be more uncomplicated, which that you can furthermore have more than one issues with this home. An underground home sounds esteem a factual thought in an boom that has frequent tornadoes, nonetheless the issues which that you can furthermore have encountered are injurious. Here is such an enticing article about an underground home, and a ways about your issues I’d by no manner have thought-about.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on February 14, 2019:

Michael, I’m no longer a realtor nor am I filthy rich. I know nothing of traits of the finance market. Where did you salvage the figure $150K? We could per chance not have gotten a mortgage for that amount both. You sound esteem a bitter person fleshy of sour grapes (or correct fleshy of shit).

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on February 14, 2019:

Sam, I invent no longer know what came about to my reply to your comment, so I will put up a brand contemporary one. We did cast off this home from a old owner who claimed to be a city engineer. We later figured out he wasn’t. By the time we found that he’d jury rigged and lined up the sad construction, the lawyer mentioned it used to be too gradual to attract terminate him to court. I’m cheerful you are having factual perfect fortune with yours.

Sam on January 24, 2019:

I designed and manufacture a Terra-Dome home and had no longer one in all the issues you worthy. In my case I’m the owner and engineer. Constructing this form of home comes with many challenges. I bought the impression you bought this home from a old owner who shriveled Terra-Finished to manufacture the superstructure. The new owner used to be to blame to be particular all of these issues weren’t going to happen. Here is fairly same outdated when of us that must not licensed to fulfill these challenges of this form of construction.

Your total issues have easy solutions. The misfortune is you invent no longer have the sources to facilitate the dear modifications.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on January 04, 2019:

Mr. Butcher, where had been you once we wished you! You have precisely analyzed all of it in a nutshell. You’re especially ethical about the avenue entrance to the home, which I most incessantly allege as a “enormous bathtub”. I genuinely have not any thought why we did not witness that earlier than we sold the home. It used to be intellectual then and we had been so powerful in adore with it. I genuinely have not any thought who designed the home, the owner or Terra Dome. I know that he used to be an engineer of some kind, or a minimal of handed himself off as one. Nonetheless I genuinely prefer to claim that we had been so starstruck that we now want to shoulder the blame, too, for falling for their line.

You hit the nail on the head, about the agent, too. They had been an older couple (husband and fundamental other realtor team) retiring in their 70s and knew precisely what they had been doing. I’m particular they’d by no manner have lied for the vendor if they had no longer been planning to switch in a international nation. (They lived round the corner, forgoshsake!) I correct desire we would found proof that we’d been duped in time to file a lawsuit towards the vendor even after the realtors moved. I’d had been say material for the court to have forced him to cast off it back at the identical designate we paid for it. Lets have gotten one other VA mortgage and sold one other home in an instant.

After we sold the home I did quiz my husband what we had been going to carry out once we bought frail and had disaster negotiating that double staircase. He mentioned he would manufacture an elevator (He is an engineer and used to be a darned factual mechanic). Neatly, we are frail now, and I peaceable invent no longer have an elevator.

Thank you for studying and your long, very informative comment. Finest of perfect fortune to you, nonetheless it undoubtedly sounds similar to you invent no longer need perfect fortune because what you are doing.

L L Butcher on January 04, 2019:

My fundamental other and I are on the brink of manufacture an earth home, and I’ve been researching and planning for years to manufacture it, whereas we regarded for the ethical property. I’m so sorry to hear this memoir (and a chunk worried, too!) What a shame! Mostly on the vendor and realtor. In southeast Missouri where we’re at, it is towards the legislation to no longer assert known issues, and if someone had been peaceable around, they’d be held to blame legally. Nonetheless, very first thing I realized immoral, among the many, is the avenue entrance into the home. It may per chance per chance furthermore as nicely be a enormous funnel directing rain and snow down into your atrium! Besides the diminutive berms that could per chance explain water from their apex into the atrium, furthermore. Severely flawed invent from the phrase trail! BTW, who WAS the vogue designer/architect on the home, anyway? No one who had ever designed an earth home, for particular.

I’ve read Constructing Underground by Herb Wade, one in all essentially the most informative and obedient books ever written on the topic, and checked out Terra Dome, nonetheless the worn enormous-sealed ‘basement model’ is what we’re going for. Not most spirited does this book assert about space drainage, wall (outer) and slab (below) drains, nonetheless furthermore goes intensive on sealing tactics. As a retired Ironworker on huge industrial and commercial jobs, I’ve watched waterproofing companies seal foundations on corporate constructions. I’ve watched them exercise bentonite, nonetheless it undoubtedly is continuously sprayed on, powerful esteem the concrete is sprayed onto dome constructions esteem yours. Though bentonite clay is passe in cat litter carry out to it is involving qualities when dry, it is initial makes exercise of had been on sub-floor constructions and furthermore on ponds to seal the dam. I’m in a position to no longer factor in anyone sending you a field and anticipating factual outcomes that manner. No wonder it did not work.

Our thought is to first guarantee the concrete is the correct kind and mix, because some mixes (and additives) can trigger concrete to attract terminate up water in preference to deflect it. Also, rubber water stops positioned between the slab/floor where the partitions sit on it, are one other safeguard. Then we are in a position to spray bentonite to seal, adopted by construction grade Styrofoam insulation, and canopy all of it with elastomer heavy rubber roof roles that can be vulcanized (melted at the seams) to insure a factual seal. One among essentially the most spirited solutions in building underground is to have as few holes in the roof or partitions in declare to support water out. Then 3′ of soil over all to insulate. I’m particular by now all this, nonetheless I’m in a position to no longer attend nonetheless mediate that these issues all had been the explain outcomes of a list of issues carried out immoral by the vogue designer and the builder. In particular the concrete boss. Perchance the concrete boss would no longer be so powerful guilty if he weren’t told by the vogue designer/architect/inspectors that underground concrete work is VERY assorted than your moderate basement. The form of concrete, the pouring, or for your case spraying, of the concrete, and the admix of the concrete are all valuable in getting it ethical. After we manufacture our home next spring, I will be in the market EVERY day making particular that every ingredient is performed wisely to support away from errors that lack of consciousness (or laziness, designate chopping, and so forth) can invent.

Anyway, I’m so sorry for the hassles I’ve read here that you have endured with your property. So powerful cash. So powerful time. So powerful peril! It is immoral sufficient that which that you can no longer believe a contractor that you did not even know, nonetheless fully appalling that the old owner mainly lied to you to scheme the sale, and even more that the realtor, who obviously knew all the pieces, peaceable made bucks off the deal whereby he could per chance furthermore peaceable be held to blame for no longer revealing the facts. It doesn’t shock me that he no longer most spirited moved, nonetheless moved out of the U.S.! I’m having a wager that your property wasn’t the correct one which he pawned off on unsuspecting innocents. I correct hope of us take into accout that, when built wisely, earth properties could per chance furthermore furthermore be immense locations to reside. Upright perfect fortune with your troubles, and could per chance furthermore peaceable God bless you all no matter what happens with it.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on January 02, 2019:

Nell, I’m no longer particular what the locals in frail Buckinghamshire would deem it. Doubtlessly the identical thing the neighbors here deem it. I genuinely have had a pair of them ticket they’d prefer to visit correct through twister warnings even supposing. LOL

I esteem the floor thought of the home and dimension of the home, 2,676 sq feet, and I’ve learned to adore the neighborhood. Thanks for studying and commenting.

Nell Rose from England on January 02, 2019:

For all of your issues I carry out find it irresistible! Not particular if it may per chance per chance most likely per chance trail down nicely in minute frail buckinghamshire lol! Hope which that you can furthermore have sorted out the issues and are happy there peaceable.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on January 01, 2019:

Thank you, Poetryman, for your comment. Since you did not deliver where you reside, I invent no longer know whether to support you to remain away from building an underground home.

poetryman6969 on January 01, 2019:

Wow. So here’s what REAL home issues sight esteem. Thanks for the classes. We could no longer be doing this.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on December 29, 2018:

Whats up, Gary, I checked out your Uba web space, and it seems spirited. Your comment makes a broad range of sense because a broad range of most contemporary products have arrive in the marketplace since our home used to be built over 30 years up to now. Years up to now we had been in the HVAC alternate ourselves, nonetheless about a of the issues we would have cherished to carry out to this home would be complicated or very no longer most likely to retrofit onto it.

The land slopes away from our home, too, nonetheless I mediate I did not scheme clear in the article that the flooding misfortune comes from the atrium, which acts esteem a enormous bathtub with a too-diminutive drain. Also, since I wrote the article, the West side of the home has developed some leaks in the concrete partitions, and now I genuinely have an field of mud seeping correct into a lavatory. When this home used to be built, builders did not exercise an envelop or umbrella of moisture barrier over the partitions. They correct keep a pores and skin on the roof…excluding for Terra Dome, who to at the 2d peaceable makes exercise of the vulnerable thin poured stuff that won’t support up between the domes to settling of the home.

My son is about to open up building an underground home near Tyler, Texas. He thinks he can carry out the next job than Terra Dome did with ours, nonetheless that is no longer announcing powerful.

You’re very correct. One can no longer have too many layers of moisture protection. Thank you for studying my article and your very constructive comment. ~ Doris

Gary Uba on December 29, 2018:

Colorado tends to be a dryclimate and our underground house is functioning nicely to this level. It is a ways 7 years frail. Moisture could per chance furthermore furthermore be an field even supposing so we now have a continous drift of external air. We decrease the warmth loss by operating the brand new air even supposing underground pipes surrounding the dome so the dry backfill heats the air earlier than it is a ways in the market in. It is 17 degrees exterior now nonetheless the air coming in is at 68 degrees.

Moisture used to be a serious misfortune earlier than building our home so we made a aware effort to guarantee the land slopes away from the home and present a water-proof envelope over the home between backfill layers over the water-proof membrane utilized to the concrete domes. I invent no longer mediate which that you can furthermore have too many layers of moisture protection. I am hoping issues determine for your moisture issues.

Google: Uba Dome Home

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on December 14, 2018:

LOL, I esteem your comment, Lex. These of us would wait except we had been no longer at home to plod all the way during the roof and putt or to carry out no matter cause they had been trespassing. After a whereas, the trespassing did stop in the daylight hours, nonetheless I peaceable can no longer keep anything esteem yard ornaments on the backyard or roof. We had a windmill situation in concrete at the front of the yard for several years. In 2016, a rebel occurred at a water theme park on a serious thoroughfare a pair of miles from us. We saw it on the 10: 00 news that evening. Then the subsequent morning we found the windmill lacking. They’d ripped it out of the concrete and stolen it whereas we slept. We draw terminate it used to be the identical of us fascinated about the rebel. Too powerful of a twist of fate.

Lex on December 12, 2018:

Nervy neighbors the utilization of your roof as a striking inexperienced? I’d trail in the market with a 9 iron and assert them to salvage the Hell of my roof. Appreciate my property or I won’t respect them and their property.

There be assholes in all places nonetheless here’s going over the line, I’m particular they comprehend it is your property, they’re correct screwing with you.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on November 23, 2018:

Julian, I genuinely have by no manner visited the Philippines, so I invent no longer know what roughly misfortune you have with your property. I invent no longer desire to discourage someone from building one, nonetheless my aim is to scheme the person aware that there are particular climates and building net sites which may per chance be no longer conducive to underground residing. I desire you the very most spirited with yours and hope which that you can furthermore have many factual happy years of residing in one. Thank you for studying and commenting.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on November 23, 2018:

Dex, I genuinely enjoyed your reply because it used to be so fitting. I invent no longer know where you reside, nonetheless if a person lives in a extraordinarily dry climate, then I’d deliver nothing to discourage him from building one. Arkansas is a extraordinarily queer boom. In the Ozarks and the Ouachitas, you are both on a mountain or down at the bottom in a swamp. No doubt. In the Expansive Prairie, I’ve one would be too terminate to the Mississippi River or in assorted Black Bottom land, so I invent no longer support it here. Thank you for your involving comment.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on November 23, 2018:

Poppy, I invent no longer know what came about. I licensed and replied to your comment ethical after you made it. This niche space is so spastic that I by no manner know when a comment “takes” or no longer. Anyway I will try once more. Thank you for your reward. And certain, it did shock us that of us would correct stroll all the way through our roof or proceed their striking educate once we weren’t home, nonetheless after my husband had about a minute chats with about a of the neighbors, these did stop. I mediate he dropped some hints that he used to be ex-CIA (factual) after which of us had been a chunk cautious of him. We did salvage a gallon of golf balls out of it, even supposing. That is what number of we found on our back lot. LOL I’m sorry my first reply did not arrive through.

Julian on November 23, 2018:

I aim to manufacture a house when I salvage my early retirement in a pair of years to the Philippines. I sold a diminutive space of land on high of a hill and I’m focused to manufacture an underground home because I’d prefer to support the watch and the pure panorama. Very tutorial put up for a newbie esteem myself. Than you.

Dex Carter on November 22, 2018:

Sure. What a immense memoir. I safe I particularly enlighting of the total causes which that you can no longer or could no longer desire to cast off an underground home. I mediate after about the 2d cause. I, mediate it used to be about mildew. No wait a minute. I mediate it used to be about flooding. No, wait. It used to be about climate. At that level I’m correct esteem I DONT desire to cast off a underground home. No No. Rating one for the team…..i’m in a position to no longer wait to Google. Causes why I could per chance furthermore peaceable bye a “Below Ground Home.


Poppy from Enoshima, Japan on November 07, 2018:

I correct adore your writing model! It is gentle, fun, and simple to read. What an unprecedented memoir about your underground home. I invent no longer mediate these would undoubtedly draw terminate off in Japan since they invent no longer seem to be earthquake proof. It is grisly, too, how strangers thought it used to be OK to invade your land. It is a ways the final thing I’d quiz from a house below the ground, and I know of us in the USA could per chance furthermore furthermore be very protective of the land they like. Thank you for this fun read.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on October 22, 2018:

Rajan, once you are inside mine, you surely can no longer assert it from any of the worn properties built on my avenue. It surprises guests on story of that. I carry out trip the peace that I genuinely feel riding out a immoral storm whereas others are sitting around fearfully. Our boom overlooking the river serves as an alley for tornadoes. I am hoping we discover a factual solution to the issues, too. Thank you for studying and commenting on my article.

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, currently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on October 20, 2018:

I genuinely have not any longer viewed any underground properties in India. Perchance this thought has no longer caught on here. On the opposite hand, after studying about the issues you are going through, even even supposing these seem to be attributable to inaccurate/ contaminated construction, I’d by no manner be ready to reside peacefully in an underground home. I am hoping which that you can furthermore safe some solution to this.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on September 04, 2018:

I mediate it may per chance per chance most likely per chance rely on how moist a climate Michigan has. I’d by no manner cast off one on a hillside once more. I mediate that a bermed one on level ground stands out as the manner to head. I glance photos of some that sight esteem they had been built at the foot of a hill, nonetheless none on the hilltop esteem ours. I’m sorry you had a hidden misfortune with your property. I’ve that it is a ways much less complicated to cover issues with an underground home than a worn home. Thank you for studying my article and your optimistic comment.

Marsha Musselman from Michigan, USA on September 04, 2018:

There are two underground properties here in my boom in Michigan, nonetheless they each and each are even with the ground which could per chance attend a chunk with flooding. I’ve continuously wondered about them nonetheless now I invent no longer mediate it is ever draw terminate into consideration shopping one.

Yours sounded pretty except it started falling aside. I understand how old house house owners cover issues as that used to be carried out with our home. Even though the issues must not in the construction of the home. Ours used to be minimal compared with your misfortune.

Sizable hub, by the manner.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on August 23, 2018:

Kirk, certain I genuinely have. I mediate that used to be what the roof artisan who quoted me $100,000 had in thoughts. I’ve suggested that manner to my son who’s building a smaller underground retirement home in Texas. Thank you for the suggestion anyway.

kirkdickinson on August 23, 2018:

Recognize you regarded into the Umbrella techniques of underground home construction? It may per chance per chance furthermore be one thing which that you can furthermore carry out to retrofit your present home.…

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on August 21, 2018:

I know, in its place of the immoral concrete mix in several locations, no person in his ethical thoughts would cast off a house with an atrium designed in this sort of capability that it may per chance per chance most likely per chance procure avenue runoff. Nonetheless then, we wished it so immoral that we correct weren’t thinking. The realtor assured us that the French drains had been sufficient. Isn’t very genuinely that roughly esteem “the verify is in the mail”?

G. Frazier – General Contractor on August 19, 2018:

Very simply keep, your underground home used to be no longer nicely built. From the ground drainge and concrete sealer and waterproofing to the inaugurate entranceway and so forth.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on August 17, 2018:

Thank you, James. At this level the suggested product (by the of us that restore authorities underground bunkers) is epoxy resin. Attain how these compare?

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 28, 2018:

Donald, I genuinely adore your comment. I carry out try to be ideal, and I’d prefer to reside in a factual dry one. I genuinely mediate that underground properties have a powerful greater chance at present than they did when mine used to be built in the 1980s. It is a pity that Terra Dome has no longer modernized its building techniques or materials since then. There had been a broad range of of us esteem my husband and I who have analyzed and reported the issues so engineers and architects have known what forms of improvements to work on.

My son and his fundamental other are correct starting up to manufacture one in the hill nation of Texas. I abominate to claim it, nonetheless about a of the techniques he’s telling me they’re going to make exercise of won’t work. Nonetheless only about a young of us draw terminate tag to their oldsters except it is too gradual, carry out they?

It sounds similar to you are going about building one the ethical manner. I’m sorry about your sister’s home. If of us knew that Bentonite clay used to be the chief ingredient in most producers of cat litter, I invent no longer have they’d exercise it. We passe to reside in Eastern NM where it happens naturally, and when it rained, one could per chance no longer stroll during the sticky muck. Who thought up that loopy thought anyway? Thank you for declaring a pair of products that we could per chance furthermore register to.

Donald Hartley on June 27, 2018:

Thanks for sharing your trip. Now we have talked to the Terra Dome of us and saw a video of them putting in insulation on a zigzag floor. It made us shudder. Even though domes could per chance furthermore furthermore be very intelligent, I invent no longer mediate their total blueprint used to be totally thought out.

We are building a poured concrete underground home on our property in southeastern Ohio. It is a ways the 2d one on our property. They had been each and each designed by the architect, Malcolm Wells (now deceased). The first one had flexicore roof and EPDM water proofing. It has been lived in for about 2 decades with out a leak. The 2d building is a ways bigger (2 stories and over 8,000 sq. feet.) and has a poured in situation roof (pan joists) We are correct in the task of waterproofing it with a product known as Tritoflex, which I’ve to be the correct product in the marketplace at present.

My sister and her husband built an underground home in Oklahoma. They water proofed it with bentonite clay. The misfortune they had used to be no longer continuous wetness of the soil, nonetheless being too dry. The clay dried out and cracked. Then surprising rains caused leaks in the building earlier than the clay could per chance swell and seal the water out. They ended up the utilization of EPDM for waterproofing.

Residing underground has many ravishing and environmental advantages. I adore your being so ideal with the factual and the immoral. Now we have designed our constructions so as that leaks, humidity and various issues you mentioned have not any longer been factors to this level.


Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 24, 2018:

Catahoula1, I’m so sorry to hear that you are having a a similar misfortune with your underground home. I’m surprised to hear that you are having the misfortune in Oklahoma. I thought that boom used to be powerful dryer than Arkansas, nonetheless I could per chance furthermore be thinking of the western section of the boom. I mediate you are wise to attract terminate away all the pieces earlier than you inaugurate up to work on it.

I’ve recommended that to my husband, nonetheless he doesn’t desire to fool with that. We even have one other situation to reside whereas we work on this one (an empty condominium in a portion of rental property), so I genuinely prefer to claim I mediate he’s being both unreasonable or impractical, or each and each.

Would per chance per chance honest I present you with one minute tidbit of recommendation? Set up an AC with more tonnage than the scale the “experts” counsel. It genuinely helped our humidity misfortune, excluding for terminate to freezing me out, that is). Our misfortune is all these roof leaks where the dome roofs join. I genuinely have minute or no wood inside mine, nonetheless the total home used to be skimmed (drywall and partitions) with drywall mud, which is immoral to mildew. I’m genuinely outlandish as to why of us manufacture the floors so terminate to the ground, or a minimal of dig out from around openings. We are peaceable having issues with water coming below the front door from the walkway to the door no matter digging out from all the way during the front.

Thank you for your comment that helps what I’ve mentioned in my article. I mediate some of us mediate I’m exaggerating, nonetheless they bring out no longer know the half of it. Preserve up a correspondence with me and let me understand how issues determine for you. We “groundhogs” must toughen every assorted.

Catahoula1 on June 24, 2018:

I’m sorry to read about your troubles. I sympathize. I sold my underground home in central OK 15 years up to now. It used to be built in 1980 by a professional woodworker for his retirement. At the starting up all the pieces used to be honest. The home genuinely is nicely insulated by the earth, nonetheless humidity has became such an insane misfortune that everyone the wood inside (there may per chance be A LOT) has mildew hurt as does powerful of the drywall which is sloughing from the ceiling in about a locations from leaks and the front has flooded a form of occasions correct through heavy rainfall. I genuinely have correct spent the final week taking all the pieces out of the home and could per chance furthermore rapidly open to eliminating drywall shopping for the leaks’ sources. Esteem you, I genuinely have had no perfect fortune discovering contractors who desire to work on an underground home. I’m worried I will want to patch it up myself. I could per chance furthermore try to safe anyone to inject epoxy similar to you had mentioned used to be suggested to you.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on June 18, 2018:

Pat, once we need ventilation, we inaugurate the home windows or doors, of which we now have many home windows. Ventilation could per chance furthermore peaceable no longer be an field for you because there are many ventilation systems in the marketplace that which that you can set up for your property or basement whereas building it. Valid sight online or seek the advice of with a factual HVAC vendor.

I invent no longer know what the moderate yearly rainfall in Idaho is, nonetheless I mediate it is a ways one in all the states with out a broad range of rain, which would scheme it very ultimate for an underground home. Please invent no longer be heart-broken on story of my misfortune in a excessive rainfall boom. I’d prefer to reside in one out West where the utilization of “swamp coolers” to chilly the air in properties is the very ultimate manner. I invent no longer know if they’re passe in CA, nonetheless in dry states, they chilly the very dry home air by including badly wished moisture. They furthermore work by blowing exterior air all the way during the home which is exhausted as new air is in the market in. The HVAC units with condensers esteem we exercise in moist states chilly by eliminating moisture, so I mediate which that you can arrive all the way during the right opposite misfortune that we now have here. Years up to now my young of us and I lived in a basement condominium that used to be about 3/4 underground on this same city, and we did not have a mildew misfortune. Nonetheless we furthermore did not have water operating and seeping in an instant into the boom both.

I support you to carry out more checking into your boom on issues esteem yearly rainfall, and with assorted of us that reside underground or partly underground. Materials and tactics have improved by a long shot since our home used to be built, or so assorted commenters assert me. Valid one more phrase of recommendation. Don’t exercise a company known as Terra Dome because they have not any longer changed their techniques or materials since my home used to be built in 1986, no longer carry out they stand in the back of their work. They are online. Look for them up and watch their online specs to scheme particular you support away from any company that makes exercise of their techniques, especially the pores and skin they pour on the home.

I genuinely invent no longer mediate you have the mildew issues in Idaho that we now have in Arkansas. Upright perfect fortune. Let me understand how you fare.

Pat on June 12, 2018:

I’m so sorry to hear of the total issues with the home. I thought it’d be an very ultimate manner to reside underground and support away from tornados. I reside in CA nonetheless had been shopping online. It seems very ultimate, to support away from the wind, and the warmth in the twister states. Nonetheless air circulation must be immoral. I’m having a sight at huge properties in Idaho now, nonetheless questioning if I will have mildew issues on story of the basements, which may per chance be midway underground. Restful looking out for the correct home, nonetheless it undoubtedly seems underground won’t work both. Severely how you salvage ventilation?

Arizona is too scorching. I desire I knew where I was going! I most spirited know CA is no longer the placement anymore.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on April 18, 2018:

Whats up Redelf, thanks for visiting with me. As for underground properties being darkish, some have skylights installed that undoubtedly herald the sunshine. Ours did not arrive with one, nonetheless I desire it had one in the guts of the greatroom dome because the kitchen is more darkish than I’d esteem. The connected greenhouse blocks some gentle that could per chance in every other case arrive during the patio doors into it. When my mother visited the first time, her reaction used to be, “Oh, it is so gentle. I told my perfect friend that I figured it’d be true darkish.”

We exercise a ceiling fan cleansing apparatus on a long pole. On the opposite hand, we present out must replace the sunshine fixture on our ceiling fan. To support out that we will pray to herald our scaffolding. P.S. I genuinely adore the geodesic dome properties. There may per chance be one near us. It used to be built about 1975 and is fully above ground.

RedElf from Canada on April 18, 2018:

Mates of ours had a geodesic dome home, nonetheless above ground. And they had to make exercise of scaffolding to neat their ceiling fan. I’ve viewed some nifty underground properties on the tv nonetheless continuously thought an underground home would be darkish, so this used to be a extraordinarily tutorial read. Thanks.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on April 02, 2018:

M Arant, I correct realized that I did not reply to your comment, and I deliver sorry. I salvage that you have read the specs on the Terra Dome properties, nonetheless once you have not any longer, the house is bolstered with rebar and we had been told the concrete used to be “plasticized,” no matter which manner. I’ve our partitions are 12″ thick, and I order the roof domes are too. I’ve our misfortune stems from two issues: a extraordinarily sloppy concrete contractor and the poured “pores and skin” on the roof. Also aiming the atrium on the north side toward the avenue creates a bath filling carry out and most incessantly overloads the French drains from the atrium to the outiside that enable the water drain down the hill. There may per chance be rarely any, I repeat “NO” water misfortune on the exterior of the home because a pure runoff is created.

You had been very wise to vet your contractor very reasonably. You invent no longer deliver in what section of Texas you built your property. When you happen to are in West Texas, where I’ve lived earlier than, you invent no longer have the intense rainfall that we now have here.

Our house is now 32 years frail, and building materials have improved seriously in these years. Now we have found that the plumbing and electrical are reaching the tip of their pure existence spans. We have already rerouted contemporary plumbing during the ceilings in a warehouse model and could per chance furthermore rapidly want to carry out the electrical likewise. Retrofits and repairs with contemporary materials are reasonably dear. It is a ways most likely that shall we manufacture a brand contemporary home for the price of repairing and updating this one. Thank you for your comments. I carry out trip hearing from of us that undoubtedly reside in one, especially if they have successfully built with contemporary materials.

M Arant on April 02, 2018:


I accept as true with you. We passe rebar, fiberglass strands and admixtures in the concrete mix. Our builder had a broad range of trip and used to be on space daily. When the concrete vans arrived he examined the mix to guarantee it used to be what he wished. A chunk more expense, nonetheless nicely price it in due path.

Resolve on I had some suggestions for corrective measures, nonetheless I carry out no longer.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on April 01, 2018:

Shanmarie, we by no manner thought-about them both. We swallowed the total hype about the wonders of underground properties by honest and commercial writers who had by no manner lived in one. We by no manner anticipated these issues and discomforts both. Some of them are attributable to building in a extraordinarily humid climate, so I’m particular of us residing in them in deserts won’t face them. Thank you for your comment. I safe it enlightening.

Shannon Henry from Texas on March 31, 2018:

Years up to now I labored for a gentleman who had two constructions on his property, each and each built underground. One used to be his home, which I by no manner saw the inside nonetheless heard used to be reasonably optimistic from coworkers who had been to Christmas parties there. The more than a few building used to be his mini name heart. What we did used to be name candidates to cover them for most likely hires in various eating locations. Contributors that answered a situation of questions in accordance with specifications of the companies had been handed on for an right interview with the corporate. If hired, m6 boss bought price. In essence, we had been restaurant management recruiters.

So anyway, I can understand the allure of an underground home, nonetheless I don’t have thought-about a few of the issues which that you can furthermore have had before time. Very informative article. Attention-grabbing to deem.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on March 31, 2018:

“Incessantly occasions building on a hill could per chance furthermore furthermore be a god send whenever you happen to strategically abolish the swales that route the water speeding down the hill all the way during the home. “

Scott, as I’ve written many occasions, we now have NO misfortune routing the water around our home. Our hill is so steep that the water routes itself. The house is built on a 45 stage slope, nonetheless the knoll the home sits upon is so steep that a human can no longer stroll up or down it. I’ve crawled up it on all fours esteem a dog earlier than. The misfortune is that water runs down into our atrium and out the French drains. On the opposite hand recently we seem to be having 500 year monsoons, and no-one would have thought to situation up for these.

The rest of your put up has some perfect answers.

ScottP on March 27, 2018:

Incessantly occasions building on a hill could per chance furthermore furthermore be a god send whenever you happen to strategically abolish the swales that route the water speeding down the hill all the way during the home. At that level you most spirited want to cope with the water that would fall in an instant for your situation correct through a rain storm. Once once more the correct frequent legislation in water proofing is that water almost continuously runs downhill.

(assorted than capillary circulation) Be particular that water is captured and routed strategically out of and away from the home.

On the present time’s field cloth science can offer us solutions by no manner in the market earlier than nonetheless it undoubtedly laborious to safe credible files about the longevity of materials.

As an illustration, there are further dietary supplements that could per chance furthermore furthermore be added to concrete that scheme it stronger and more water-proof and no more inclined to

shrinkage because it treatments and so forth. Add to the concrete the assorted techniques similar to rebar and the latest fiberglass strands that could attend to prevent concrete from cracking. Subsequent we now have choices at present in liquid utilized sealants for the outsides of concrete up high and for subterranean purposes. Plastics, and polymer applied sciences are all over the plan.

That that you can per chance per chance most incessantly be particular anything with TAR or pure stuff goes

to dry out, shrink and invent cracks and surely no longer be stretchy sufficient

to cover cracks could per chance furthermore peaceable they happen in the concrete partitions or roofs or foundations on which they’re utilized. Now we want to carry out a chunk analysis

to discover which products are anticipated to final 100 years or eternally

similar to per chance silicones, EDPM sheet materials, Urethanes and so forth and so forth.

The final home I built for myself I troweled on Neoprene that used to be the consistency of peanut butter and on high of that I embedded some fiberglass mesh cloth in case a crack occurred in the concrete foundation on which it used to be utilized. The Neoprene came in about

thirty or forty 5 gal container correct esteem drywall mud. Resolve into story that could per chance furthermore peaceable cracks happen in poured slabs whether on high, bottom or partitions

it is the embedded rebar that minimizes the crack inaugurate dimension by retaining

the wall pieces together even supposing they’re cracked. It seems to me that the Pond Liner materials ( EDPM I mediate ) stands out as the correct stuff

to abolish a layered umbrella carry out over an earth lined safe haven nonetheless peaceable

buried below soil. I’d NEVER exercise anything with VINYL in the name because Vinyl ALWAYS dries up, becomes brittle and cracks no matter what it is a ways passe in. If the total applicable choices are made and there may per chance be documentation and proof of these “eternally” construction tactics

then these properties could per chance furthermore peaceable adore rather more than frequent constructions. Let me present you with an thought. We had an frail cabin/farmhouse kind property that wished a brand contemporary steel roof. I was ready to catch stainless-steel materials which final longer than copper and at the side of

stainless-steel fasteners the appraiser now says the price of that roof

will eternally add to the appraisal because it may per chance per chance most likely per chance NEVER depreciate.

The roof is anticipated to final 350 years he mentioned.

It does designate further nonetheless carry out the analysis and likewise you are going to safe for concrete further “admixtures” that scheme concrete each and each more flexible, stronger and water proof than customary concrete passe in frequent construction.

The total issues did not want to happen nonetheless once you salvage a builder and contractors who desire to cut back the price to the bone shortcuts can be taken that can final correct long sufficient for them to be long previous when the issues insist to happen.

M. Arant on March 26, 2018:

Valid about a notes to level to that earth sheltered is no longer the topic: Quality, manner and integrity of the builder are.

We designed and built an earth sheltered home in TX. Sooner than we bought started we made up our minds upon our builder essentially essentially based fully upon repute and techique. We selected Ralph Smoot, whose son now builds properties as Conrad’s Castles. They exercise a clear manner than Terra, and I understand have built over 50 properties all all the way during the nation

When we knew the frequent requirements I designed a house to qualify. It took me a year and over 100 versions, nonetheless we are genuinely delighted with the tip result. It is a ways made up of 4 24′ square modules, with 12′ domed ceilings. It is a ways fully a berm home, uncovered to the south and west (a mistake it TX, nonetheless we had been moveing from OR.) Walls are 9″ concrete, poured in a monolithic pour. The roof is, obviously, concrete furthermore, nonetheless I’m no longer particular of the thickness. With the rebar and concrete it is a ways rated at 50,000 lb/feet. (The blog reveals a backhoe distributing the dirt on the roof).

There may per chance be loads to it, more than I could per chance furthermore peaceable doubtlessly trail into here. There may per chance be a blog of the manufacture, insist to produce. Valid google ‘arant earth’ and it may per chance per chance most likely per chance furthermore peaceable arrive up with out an field.

To address about a of the factors in the OP put up:

Now we have had no leaks, duration.

We present out have a french drain all the way during the buried aspects, nonetheless I genuinely have by no manner viewed any water drain out of them.

This may per chance occasionally be very ambiance recommended, even supposing it did draw terminate about a year to stabilize.

Now we have an electrical warmth pump, with works nicely in the summer, nonetheless no longer when it drops to the 30’s in the iciness. We exercise a propane fireplace then to support the residing boom warmth (72 degrees). Electricity costs lower than $100/month moderate, propane for fireplace, cooking, scorching water and dryer about $40/mo.

Our builder knowledgeable ceiling fans in every room, which lag 24/7. We have not any mildew misfortune.

Re: Landscaping the roof. We xerigraph landscaped with Texas purple sage, lantana planted through commercial grade weedcloth. There may per chance be a parapet all the way during the halt which I’m currently planting to purple Gulf Muhley, which could per chance furthermore peaceable be reasonably beautiful when aged. There may per chance be rarely any irrigation on the roof (or in assorted locations on the lot assorted than drip for the citrus bushes and backyard).

I’d be happy to answer to questions if someone desires to contact me.

(When you happen to head to the blog please trail away a comment)

Mizbejabbers on January 23, 2018:

Densie, your memoir sounds so very equivalent to mine. Upright now we are recuperating from very chilly temps in the 9 to 10 stage fluctuate, and it is taken the home over per week to warmth back up. Our Vermont Castings range goes and so are two dehumidifiers. Finest final evening had been we ready to turn down the warmth. Our bedroom is chilly, and we exercise an electrical plod-in heater in the bath next to it. Brrrr. Closing evening I found that the pipe bringing the water into the home had frozen and burst underground, doubtlessly below the home. On the present time we are peaceable out of water except the plumber can restore it. It is a ways a family alternate and the son came at present and mentioned that it used to be a job for his father. Underground properties are too complicated! My husband is an engineer sick. If anything happens to him, I’m outa here!

Not lower than which that you can furthermore have a roof that could per chance furthermore furthermore be repaired by a frequent roof artisan. I know you are grateful for that. I genuinely adore your comment. I desire I could per chance salvage more comments from of us that undoubtedly reside in these issues.

Densie on January 22, 2018:

What a nightmare. We reside in a berm home in rural So Illinois, our roof and southwest wall are uncovered. Varied 3 partitions are concrete. Our 2nd iciness in the house we installed a wood range after a ridiculously huge electrical bill. The electrical furnace ran continuously and I sat around wrapped in a quilt. With the wood range I genuinely prefer to add humidity by task of a kettle positioned on the range because a humidifier correct won’t support up. Summertime is immense, the AC is always situation at 78 and most incessantly the quilts are passe then too. Earthquake. We had one about a years up to now that did measure on the richter scale even even supposing I dont take into accout the magnitude. I cant deliver if it used to be the rumbling noise or the vibration that woke me nonetheless others in my boom slept through it. Your total glass in my home clanked, photos on partitions had been now no longer straight and about a items on shelves had been thrown to the floor. Moisture. The grasp bath is chilly year around because it sits in the back north corner of the home. Here is the correct room I genuinely have seen moisture and it most spirited happens in the transition between iciness with the home windows closed and when the humidity rises in the summer with home windows inaugurate. Turning on the AC continuously solves this misfortune. The home used to be wall to wall carpet once we bought the home, excluding for toilets and kitchen. Now we have since pulled the carpet and layed ceramic tile or hardwood in all nonetheless 2 bedrooms. This improved air fantastic seriously. The carpet continuously felt damp in the iciness even even supposing there used to be no mildew when pulled it used to be crunchy. Valid shocking. I’ve most incessantly thought about how optimistic it’d be to have a front room as you, I mediate I will follow the steel roof.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on January 06, 2018:

No, they did not carry out the correct they could per chance. The company that built the home, Terra Dome, focuses on underground properties and is peaceable in alternate at present. The franchise hired contaminated subcontractors, or their contractor did, and the home suffers from a sad combination of concrete. The owner lied to us and printed most spirited one restore when there had been a minimal of two more. The true property agent lived round the corner, nonetheless he knew he used to be intriguing to Mexico, so it did not matter. Our lawyer mentioned we found the deception too gradual. Approved pointers invent no longer matter when of us switch in a international nation.

“McDonalds has its situation in the steak world.” McDonalds sells hamburgers, no longer steaks, and that used to be my level. Breeze there whenever you happen to’d esteem a hamburger, nonetheless invent no longer quiz to salvage a steak.

Deli man 9 on January 05, 2018:

the of us that built your property did the correct they could per chance with what they knew, then sold it to you to sell off it after they saw the consequences. Precise property has criminal pointers towards that.

McDonalds has its situation in the steak world.

Department river plastics makes eps similar to you want. EPs has no environmental negative gasses esteem assorted foam insulation makes exercise of.And it may per chance per chance most likely per chance designate a portion of varied foam forms.I was surprised at the makes exercise of for EPs in contemporary construction. Oh, I correct gotta deliver it, nonetheless invent no longer force the tools on the home or the septic machine.

You per chance invent no longer desire the warmth storage of Haits machine, correct the water-proof umbrella of sheeting and a pair layers of foam would give 3 sheeting layers and likewise you would be golden. Upright perfect fortune with this.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on January 03, 2018:

OK, Dell man 9, that sounds esteem some factual advice. I’d be interested about what John Hait has to claim because materials have improved seriously since this home used to be built by a franchisee and its injurious subcontractors. I order factual advice would be now to not head to McDonalds whenever you happen to’d esteem a steak. Thank you.

Deli man 9 on January 03, 2018:

Whats up, sorry to hear of your property troubles. I genuinely had been interested about earth sheltered properties for years, and have read all I’m in a position to safe on this field..In a book by John Hait named Passive underground properties, which I genuinely have, he affords immense advice for your factors. His properties have a french drain all all the way during the placement. Then they’re lined with earth formed correct into a dome, then plastic sheets organized esteem shingles to shed water. Then 1 slither bead board, then plastic sheet once more, for 4 layers total. The bead board doesn’t salvage moist, so it is a ways factual here. The 4 layers prevent water intrusion. Take it from a manufacturer, no longer retail.He furthermore retail outlets warmth in the earth below this cover. Water is the carrier of warmth, out or in. He furthermore aspects out the water-proof qualities of 8 salvage concrete mixes, a enormous robust mix. concrete mix company’s are known by local contractors for their fantastic or no longer. To your case, excavation and plastic sheeting and insulation retrofitting stands out as the correct repair. You have a backhoe I read. So rent an excavator machine of factual dimension otherwise you’ll be eternally. You present you with the chance. When your situation is inside a dry dome of soil, you have a powerful greater situation. And glance to it your self, or salvage burned once more . Gain that book, this could scheme more sense.

Doris James MizBejabbers (creator) from Beautiful South on December 27, 2017:

The perimeter is rarely the misfortune. The water flows downhill all the way during the home with out needing French drains. Look for at the photo of the home. The atrium is esteem a bath. There are French drains on the roof, nonetheless they invent no longer support the holes in the immoral concrete mix from leaking.

patrick on December 27, 2017:

Attain which that you can furthermore have a french drain or 5 all the way during the perimeter?

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