So you have decided to put up a steel building on your property, but where should you put it? The exact location of your building on your property will ultimately affect your design, and should not be overlooked as an essential aspect of your building. Here are four considerations when picking your building’s location:
Use Undeveloped Land
Undeveloped, or virgin, land is the ideal type of land for you to build upon. This land will require the least amount of preparation prior to the erection of your building, since you will not have to perform any work to modify or accommodate previous developments.
In order to determine how to have the land primed for foundation work, you should have it professionally surveyed. Even if your land seems to be ready for building, you need to make sure that your land only needs minor excavation.
Get Your Soil Tested
Not enough builders have their target plot tested to ensure that the land is usable. This is unfortunate since these tests are simple and affordable. Your steel building company should be able to recommend an engineering firm that can perform standard soil tests, such as a boring test. Boring tests will measure permeability of the ground and whether it can support your intended structure. If it does not meet the minimum PSI requirements, your steel building company can advise you of your foundation options.
Your Building Placement Might Affect the Types of Loads Your Building Needs
Steel buildings are designed to handle three levels of exposure. If all sides of your building are protected from the wind (such as instances where the building is completely surrounded by trees), your building will need to be designed and constructed for Exposure “B” levels. However, more commonly buildings will be made for Exposure “C” levels. The other standard is for exposure “D”, and that level is for steel buildings erected within a mile of a body of water. Make sure that you ask your designer what level of exposure is being used for your building’s design, and then double-check to make sure they are providing your building the proper level of strength and durability.
Consult with Your Local Building Official
A common mistake is that designers and customers do not consult with their local building official before finalizing the design. Even if they were smart enough to reference local building codes and standards before creating their design, they still need to check with the local building official, who might have further requirements to approve a building design. For example, a snowy city might have a certain snow load standard for the entire municipality, but the local building official might ask for a heavier snow load design for areas that might face more extreme precipitation.
While these four considerations are not an exhaustive list of information you should know prior to ordering your first building, these are important points that even some veteran steel companies might overlook. Learning as much as you can about steel buildings prior to contacting a steel building company will put you in the best position to have a quality steel building that will last you for years to come.