The Advantages of Retaining Walls

A retaining wall provides advantages such as preventing damage by soil falling or sliding away from a foundation.

Types

This can preserve ground area on the property or even add to it. A homeowner can choose from a variety of materials to build a retaining wall and use it as part of an overall landscaping plan to enhance the appearance of the property.

You can build a retaining wall from materials such as concrete, stone, wood, brick and blocks. Prices to build a wall range from about $15 per square foot for timber to $25 for natural stone, not counting design, according to "Engineering a Retaining Wall" by This Old House writer John Wagner.

Appearance

Provide proper drainage for your wall. Consult experienced landscapers and builders about how and where to dig, material for backfill and landscape fabric. You can also enhance the appearance of your property with the construction of your retaining wall.

Cautions

Design and build your retaining walls to bear heavy loads. Poorly constructed walls can lean, crack and fail. Choose your materials with care. Stone and brick walls last longer than timber, but are harder to build.

About the Author

Lexa W. Lee is a New Orleans-based writer with more than 20 years of experience. She has contributed to "Central Nervous System News" and the "Journal of Naturopathic Medicine," as well as several online publications. Lee holds a Bachelor of Science in biology from Reed College, a naturopathic medical degree from the National College of Naturopathic Medicine and served as a postdoctoral researcher in immunology.