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Too much rock in soil/lot


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By Jesus in San Antonio, TX on 3/21/2007


Hello,

I was wondering if anyone ever had issues with too much rock in their lot? 

I bought an acre in the Comal,TX area and found out that the lot had draining problems.  The developers are offering to switch lots with me, the only problem with the new lot is it has a lot of rock sticking out of the ground.  In areas the slabs are big.  Will this be difficult and expensive to clear?  Also, will covering it with top soil take care of the issue?  Thanks in advance. 


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By Dale in Richland, AZ on 3/21/2007


There are several ways to deal with rock. If its a potential problem I would make a soils engineering report from the seller part of the transaction.

You can build on rock, it has different challenges than farm land soil. But it can be done. I have built on solid /fractured rock that required a LOT of hammering and other stuff that was outcroppings.

It won't be as cheap as flat silty/sand but you may be able to incorporate some of the rock into your design. Or better yet, make it a feature you brag about!

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By Jesus in San Antonio, TX on 3/22/2007


The area where the lot is found is very nice, (in the hill country to be exact).  The issue is i'm on a deadline to accept this lot or to let it go.  I just hate to make a wrong decision.  Prices for this type of lots in the area are expensive, and usually go up in value. 

I will be researching the issue more before making the decision.  The last thing I want to do is get it, and realize it will cost an arm and a leg to fix the problem.  Thanks for the advice!


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By Michael Penn in Dripping Springs, TX on 3/22/2007


Much of the Texas Hill Country area is very rocky.  And people build on it all the time.  Driller's drill thru it too.  Of course it still could be that your particular lot might have some extraordinary challenges, and that dealing with them might be more expensive or risky than you want to deal with.

Seems to me like it might be 2 separate issues:

 having lots of rock in your landscape,

or having rock under your foundation. 

In the case of my lot, where I haven't started building yet, I believe that it has relatively good topsoil over much of it, and I thought of that as a big benefit when I was shopping for a lot.

On the other hand, the particular portion where I'm planning to place my house (and foundation) is almost solid rock, with only a peppering of topsoil.  The one foundation guy who's looked at it didn't seem to have any concerns at all about the rock.


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By Rachel in Magnolia, TX on 3/23/2007


I don't know if you are in a big rush to start building but you mentioned that the lots will probably go up in value.  If this is a growing area, I don't think there would be much harm to purchase it and take your time examining your options for the build.  If the options appear to be more expensive or complicated than you are willing to take on, you can always put it back on the market and maybe the land will appreciate like you think and you can make a little something.
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