Listen to What Others Have to Say About Permanent Wood Foundations

“As a building contractor during the late 1970s and early 1980s, we built some 43 houses installing PWF foundations under seven and were very impressed with them. They are relatively easy to build, cost effective, warm and dry. We installed a PWF for our own home in central Alberta and lived there for 5 years before selling.”

During 2004 we had an occasion to visit friends in the area which included an opportunity to talk with the present owners of the house. They confirmed that proper construction and backfilling materials had resulted in their basement areas being free of water problems for the past 30 years.

“Our family would not hesitate to build using the PWF foundation system.”

K. McKenzie, Contractor,
Penhold, AB


“I can put it in a nutshell for anyone considering installing a permanent wood foundation. They won’t crack. They’re non-porous. They’re warm and dry. And it has the same comfort and feel as any other level in your home. It brings the basement ‘out of the ground’ to become living area like the rest of your home.”

Daniel Scott
Certified Journeyman


“We live in a community of about 35 houses in the far north where the winter temperatures oftentimes drop to 40 below for weeks at a time. My job is to look after the houses and coordinate the building of some 4 – 6 new houses each year. The winter season up here is also much longer than in areas farther south. In addition to the cold temperatures, the storms in our portion of the country often bring strong winds with them causing rapid heat loss from our buildings.

Our total heating costs per house are greater than usual because winter comes early in our area and stays later into the spring time. Since we started installing permanent wood foundations under our buildings we have reduced our heating bills considerably. By using the permanent wood foundation system as well as increasing other insulation values, in most cases we’ve been able to heat a house for somewhere in the neighborhood of 35% to 40% of what a house built the standard way would use.

To us, that’s a huge energy savings !

These reductions in the costs of heating our homes are crucial to our community’s overall operating budget. The energy we use to heat our homes comes from burning heating oil which is really a light grade diesel oil. The heating oil comes to us in barrels and is delivered to our settlement by barge up the river (a 3-day trip from the nearest town) or over the winter road (when the soils, rivers, creeks and lakes are frozen) and, as a result, is very expensive.

We wouldn’t use any other foundation system for our houses than the permanent wood foundation system. It is, and will remain, an integral part of our building program.”

John Rigney
Housing Coordinator


“There are many advantages to permanent wood foundations that we have realized over the years as a builder and contractor.

Here are the top three for our company;

1. The 6 months of cold weather in our area prohibits the pouring of concrete when temperatures dip below -10 degrees with a wind chill. Even if we are fortunate enough to ‘hit the right day’ for the pour, there are endless hours of hoarding and site watch to keep everything heated. The permanent wood foundation system is far more labor and cost efficient for us.

2. Construction in remote areas is very difficult with concrete. The permanent wood foundation system gives us a lot of flexibility in providing good service to our clients in these remote areas.

3. We take pride in being a “Green Building Company” and this comes with many responsibilities. The permanent wood foundation system is a great technology for energy conservation and general home comfort. In addition to being a proven foundation system, it’s also a renewable resource as well as providing our customers with energy conservation. The cost of a PWF alone is reason enough to consider it as a viable foundation system.

“Our firm has been building PWF systems all over Western Canada for 20 plus years and have never had a call back or issues that required our attention. I can’t say the same for other foundation systems.”

Brad Hamilton – Discovery Building Systems Inc.
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan


“In my capacity as a building technical adviser to our communities, I’ve inspected many hundreds of permanent wood foundations in our area over the past 20 years. Constructed properly I continue to be amazed at this technology and the many benefits and advantages it gives the homeowners. The basements are warm, dry, comfortable and problem free.”

Gordon Bjornson, NPTC, High Level, AB