Quite commonly trees and bushes are planted
too close to houses and their foundations. Most of the time
homeowners unwittingly decide to plant a young Japanese
Maple, Magnolia Tree, Cherry Tree, or decorative shrub very
close to the house without taking the proper considerations
to what impact this plant will have on the house when it
is considerately larger than when planted.
Bushes and trees both similar negative effects
on houses. Bushes tend to fill out as they age. When
this happens, the distance the homeowner chose for the bush
has now changed. More often than not the bush is now uptight
against the house causing all kinds of unseen problems.
The rough branches now scrape against the siding causing
premature failure of the paint, vinyl, or aluminum. Now
that the siding is covered you are unable to easily periodically
inspect these areas and may be years before the damage is
notices. This also can act as an area that rodents and insects
may enter the house undetected to cause costly damage to
Bushes too close to the house also traps
moisture from rain or snow against the foundation. Unable
to get the proper airflow between the house and bush allows
the moisture to stay for long periods of time creating basement
moisture problems, possible insect infestation, and rot.
Bushes also prevent the ability to inspect and maintain
a positive grading (see Maintaining A Positive Grade) around
the homes foundation.
Trees Trees planted too close to the house
can also cause serious and costly problems for a homeowner.
Whether it is a decorative tree or a weed growing wild,
as trees mature and grow larger they can very quickly start
effecting a house. The branches, like bushes, scrape against
the siding and roof shingles causing frequent maintenance
and premature failure. Branches and limbs hanging over the
house can break off from age or server weather, causing
immediate failure to the roof. Animals such as squirrels
and raccoons can easily gain access to the house for winter
hibernation causing severe damage themselves.
Roots can also place severe pressure on
the foundation of the house causing the basement walls to
bow inward and fail, and lifting of foundations causing
unevenness, which both can be very expensive to correct
and removal of the tree would be ultimately needed. When
deciding to plant trees and bushes around the home, proper
distance should be obtained. All trees and bushes should
be planted at least 10' from any building and have proper
trimming to prevent encroachment in the future.