HUDs code of Federal Regulation the gold standard of
minimum development and building standards
HUD Standard 24CFR 200 926(d) prohibits HUD funding for many hazards, one of which is building homes on expansive soil.
The property may become eligible for HUD approval if the hazard in this case hazardous expansive soil is mitigated. Mitigation in this example allows for an engineer to design a foundation that will withstand the potential or foreseeable damages that expansive soils impose on the foundation and the structure of the home.
Further, neither HUD standards nor standard engineering practices recommend that it is permissible to under engineer foundations knowing that it is designed to fail unless maintained by watering.
To be clear, the purpose of engineering foundations is to ensure that the foundation will withstand the hazards of expansive soil. There is no justification for foundation designs that are dependant on regular foundation watering to avoid foundation failure. If so, the foundation is designed to fail.
In additional a builder must submit a HUD 92541 Builders Certification. Unfortunately builders choose to disregard truthfulness; HOBB through a number of HUD open records requests has documented thousands of false Builder Certifications swearing that the house is not built on expansive soil, when it is.
Expansive soil is prevalent throughout the country yet, no other state in the nation but Texas have the builders marketing professional been able to spin the deceptive message that it is the homeowners responsibility to water their engineered foundations.
If builder continue this practice they should be required to post signs. Caution Engineered Fountains! Foundation must be watered to insure foundation survival.
I suspect our ancestors would scoff at that notion and reply, leave watering to the plants and grass.