Housing Developers Use Demolition Companies to Lay the Groundwork for Change

suburban-housing-communityWhile it may not seem obvious, one of the most important stages in a housing construction project is the demolition of any previous structures. Following clear guidelines while demolishing an existing building sets up the construction project for success. When looking for a demolition contractor in Portland, Oregon select one that has a comprehensive plan when it comes to a demolition project.

Choosing the Right Commercial Demolition Company

Picking a demolition company can seem like a daunting task, especially if you have limited experience with the industry and don’t know what to look for. It may surprise you to learn that demolition contractors have specialties. Some take on large-scale projects, ones in urban areas that require precision, ones that focus on asset recovery, and more.

At Elder Demolition, we specialize in urban revitalization efforts. We’re experts in extracting buildings from tight spaces and recycling as much of the building material as possible so our clients maximize their resources to offset costs. 

6 Qualities to Look for in Your Demolition Contractor

Here are some helpful guidelines you can use as a basis for screening potential demolition companies


  1. Experience. Make sure the contractor has experience performing this kind of demolition.
  2. Insurance. Sometimes specific insurance  is required for certain kinds of demolition.
  3. Safety and regular training. This shows compliance with OSHA rules and industry best practices.
  4. Public record. Check to make sure the demolition contractor’s public record and keep an eye out for any violations.
  5. Supervisors. Do some research and familiarize yourself with the names and qualifications of the owners.
  6. Tools and equipment. Does this contractor have the appropriate tools needed for the job?

We invite you to read our article that details commercial demolition best practices that your contractor should abide by. 

Common Steps in a Demolition Plan Housing Developers Should Know

Now that we have some standards set when looking for demolition services, let’s take a look at what to expect. Housing developers rely on an orderly and organized demolition in order to have a clean slate for their construction projects. Luckily, according to the National Demolition Association, demolishing an existing building is often less than 2% of the replacement cost. 

Step 1: Surveying the Building & Obtaining Permits

The first step that a demolition contractor will take is to make a thorough survey of the existing structure. They will make a note of any hazardous materials, such as asbestos, that will need special care to remove. 

If available, original building plans will be consulted and relevant permits will be acquired. Many cities require that neighbors are notified of the demolition, which should be carried out by the demolition company. Utilities will need to be disconnected, and any pest removal is done at this stage. The demolition contractor will sometimes draw up a site-specific safety plan to address any special concerns for safety the project might require. 

Step 2: Removal of Hazardous Materials

Despite the popular culture depiction of explosive demolition and the violent collapsing of buildings, this very rarely happens. In fact, implosions make up less than 1% of demolition work. Instead, most demolition companies rely on precision tools and techniques to systematically deconstruct the building.

The first step is to remove hazardous materials and then dispose of them in a safe way. Elder Demolition recognizes the threat these materials present to our workers and to the welfare of the construction project to follow. Therefore we place a high priority on identifying and extracting these materials as soon as possible. 

Step 3: Recycling Scrap Metal, Concrete & More

Deconstruction is a “greener” approach to demolition. Pieces of the structure are removed with an effort to preserve them either for recycling or resale.


The money made from the materials can help offset the costs of demolition, making it a very attractive option for housing developers. Not to mention, it can divert tons of material from landfills. With proper planning, this technique has “resulted in landfill diversion rates that exceed 90% of an entire building and its contents”. 

Metals, ceramics, woods, concrete, and more are all highly valuable commodities and readily available from demolished buildings. Because of how precisely Elder Demolition can demolish buildings, we are able to offer some of the best asset recovery services in the Pacific Northwest.

Commercial Demolition in Oregon, Washington, Montana & Idaho

We have the expertise and equipment to bring down any building in a cost-effective, efficient, and safe manner. Our demolition expertise is known throughout the Northwest and surrounding areas, from Spokane, Washington to Montana, Idaho, and Portland, Oregon.

We offer a variety of services that are sure to help housing developers efficiently complete their projects. Contact us today!

This entry was posted in Home Demolitions, Oregon Demolition, Portland Demolition. Bookmark the permalink.