Rise Above The Tide

Take a drive along the New Jersey coast and you’ll of course see a lot of rebuilding and renovating taking place, but something else you’ll see are homes being lifted so they sit higher off the ground. House raising in NJ has been big business since Hurricane Sandy, and for obvious reasons. Being at a higher elevation means lower flood insurance premiums, and it also means being in a safer position when storms like Hurricane Sandy strike.

The key word in that sentence is “when.” You see, while Hurricane Sandy was a storm of historic proportions, it is unlikely that it will remain an anomaly. The reason is simple:

Global warming.

It’s already well documented that global warming contributed to the impact of Sandy when it hit the coast.

“The most damaging aspect of the storm was the massive storm surge that struck the coastline from Massachusetts to Maryland. Global warming-related sea level rise gave the surge a higher launching pad than it would have had a century ago, making it more damaging than it otherwise would have been,” According to Climatecentral.org. “This is only going to get worse as sea level rise continues as a result of warming ocean waters and melting polar ice caps and glaciers.”

These predictions of greater floods in the future are one of the reasons why people are investing in house lifting NJ now, while grants and insurance funding are available. Most firms specializing in NJ house raising are set up to assist people to securing funding to help offset the costs of the lift, making the procedure a popular one the last year or two.

It’s not out of the question that future storms will have a comparable intensity to Hurricane Sandy. Conditions were perfect for the storm to form the way it did, but the New York Times notes that those conditions are likely to repeat with greater frequency in the future.

“A likely contributor to the intensity of Sandy,” the times reported just after the storm, “was that surface temperatures in the western Atlantic Ocean were remarkably high just ahead of the storm — in places, about five degrees Fahrenheit higher than normal for this time of year. In fact, part of the ocean was warmer than it would normally be in September, when accumulated summer heat tends to peak.”

In other words, with global warming trends pushing increased ocean temperatures, conditions will again be right for such a storm sooner rather than later. No wonder so many homeowners along the New Jersey coast are looking towards house lifting as a way to better protect themselves from future storms. A modest investment now – the cost of a lift is usually less than people expect – could end up saving countless more dollars later. Maybe even a person’s home.

People continue to debate whether or not global warming is man made, but the truth is, for those living at the coast the answer to that question doesn’t matter. Rising global temperatures are a fact, regardless of their cause, making it incumbent upon people to prepare for the future.

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Contact New Jersey House Raising

NJ House Raising

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NJ House Raising

Those who survived Hurricane Sandy have been faced with a myriad of choices when it comes to what to do with their home and property. Those whose houses only suffered relatively minor flood damage may be considering NJ house raising. Others are looking into their options when it comes to putting their home on the real estate market. And still others are considering demolishing their home and building new.

If house raising in NJ is not part of your plans, nor is selling your home, then you’re probably want to know what exactly a home demolition entails. Here is what you need to know about home demolition from start to finish.

First, you’re going to have to find a licensed and insured demolition contractor, because this isn’t a job that can be done by just anyone. NJ house raising is a good place to start.  Once you find a contractor, be sure to get an estimate in writing. If they refuse a written estimate, walk away! In the estimate, be sure it states who is responsible for getting and paying for any necessary permits.

Next, the house is going to need to be inspected for hazardous materials. Many older homes were constructed with materials that today are considered hazardous. From asbestos (often used in flooring, ceilings, duct work and siding) to lead (common in old paint) to old diesel and oil tanks, this material must be handled with special care. It may be necessary to get an inspector to determine if any of these conditions exist before demolition.

Being free and clear of hazardous materials doesn’t mean you can start knocking down walls, however. There remains the matter of utilities – and that is a major safety factor in a successful demolition. (It is also taken into consideration when a house lifting NJ company raisings a home.) Remember, those posts and markers you see all over warning about underground gas and electric lines are there for a reason.

If you have materials that can be salvaged from your home – copper is in especially high demand these days – work with your contractor to determine what can be taken and what can be resold or donated. All of this needs to be done before the actual demolition takes place.

When the actual demolition takes places, don’t expect it to happen overnight. This is a process that can take several days and that usually involves some major heavy equipment. The walls and structure of your home will be torn down and put in large (and dangerous!) piles. From there the refuse will go into on-site roll-off dumpsters. It may take anywhere from three to six such containers to fit all the debris. All debris must be removed, right down to the dirt.

Many people are choosing house raising in NJ rather than demolition simply because the process is easier, less time-intensive, and less costly. A demolition alone can cost as much as an entire house lift, and even extensive repairs will be more affordable than building an entirely new structure.

No matter the choice you make, be sure to work only with reputable contractors who will provide written estimates and who have you benefit in mind, not their wallet.

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New Jersey House Raising

House Raising in New Jersey

House Raising in New Jersey

It has been a year since Hurricane Sandy swept across the East Coast and ravaged the Jersey Shore, leaving thousands homeless and destroying countless properties. In the time since, many property owners have endeavored to rebuild and improve, and more importantly, to better prepare for the next major storm to hit the shore region. Key among those improvements has been raising their homes to a higher elevation.

Surprisingly, raising a home several feet higher than it used to be is no longer the colossal undertaking it used to be. New technology, new techniques, and new approaches make house raising in NJ an almost routine process. It is so routine, in fact, that scores of companies appeared after Hurricane Sandy to offer their house lifting NJ services.

And that has been problematic.

The problem doesn’t come from increased competition among companies who can perform house raising services. Rather, the problem is that many of these companies are fly by night operations that began house lifting solely to profit on disaster, not because it is their area of expertise.

Take, for instance, a news report from August 13 out of Highlands, New Jersey. The home had been right in the path of severe flooding during the 2012 Superstorm, taking on some five to six feet of water. In addition to renovations and repairs, the owners of the property sought to raise the house to put it above future flooding.

However, there was a mishap when the Boston-area company hired to lift the home began work. The house slid off the cribbing, the wooden pallets which are stacked up to hold the house in place during the lift, when a corner of the cribbing failed. The home then slid into a neighboring building. The home it hit still had personal possessions inside, and due to the damage the owner could not retrieve them.

New Jersey House Raising

New Jersey House Raising

“Their belongings were still inside, but house is coming down with the belongings,” Dale Leubner of the borough engineering office told NJ.com in August. “It is too unsafe and unstable to allow anyone inside to get the belongings, I know the owner, I feel really bad for him and his family. It is too unsafe to have anyone walk around, I can’t say what would happen.”

So due to that error, not one, but two households will be out of their home for longer than expected.

House raising New Jersey doesn’t have to be complicated, but it does have to be done by a careful, reputable company with years of experience in the business. If you are considering raising your Jersey Shore home, be sure to research the background of the company you are choosing. Ask to speak to previous clients and if possible to view examples of past work they have done. Doing this will not only give you peace of mind, it will also ensure you avoid mishaps such as the one that took place in Highlands.

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