By Troy Corman, www.t2realestate.com
When it comes to Dallas homes with slab foundations built in the 1960s and 1970s, buyer beware. Our very expansive soils can wreak havoc on the tract, starter homes built in the 1960s and 70s. I've been bitten more than once on these homes where I've had to pay major dollars to prepare broken plumbing pipes. Plumbing problems are not fun. As the foundations shift, they can put enormous strain on both cast iron and pvc pipes under the home. This can mean plumbing problems which can cause even more foundation problems as the ground below the slab gets washed away.
I recommend that you always have leak tests done on homes of this vintage and pay very close attention if any foundation work or plumbing work has been repaired in the past. If foundation work has been done, insist on getting the plumbing leak test results which should accompany any foundation repairs.
Cast iron that was used in the 1960s and 70s is not as thick as the cast iron used in the early 1900s. That's why I prefer homes built in the 1950s or older on pier and beam foundations or homes built in the 80s or newer. That old adage, "they just don't build 'em like they used to" often holds true when it comes to DFW residential construction.