Keeping your basement dry is key to preventing mold growth. With all the rain we have been having here in Massachusetts, you may find that you have a problem with water in your basement.
When your house was built, the yard sloped away from the building, acting like the roof and drawing water away. After years of water dripping next to the foundation, the yard has sunk down next to the house and water is now directed towards the foundation.
One solution is to add new dirt and grass and build the ground cover back up o slope the yard away from the house. A good rule is one inch to the foot for 10’. Also, maintain 8”of minimum clearance from the dirt and the wood siding or trim to keep the wood from rotting and to keep termites out.
I actually prefer the 18”rule; 18” of clearance between the siding and the dirt or ground cover, 18” of clearance between the siding and fully grown shrubs, 18” of clearance between a finished basement wall and the foundation wall and an 18” of overhang at the soffits.
In some cases you may need to add a swale to control water. A swale is a water harvesting ditch or depression that is used to handle storm water runoff.
This yard in the picture slopes towards the home in every direction. You can see how water will be drawn directly into the basement.