The foundation of your house is a very important factor because it is the source of support for everything in your house. Whether your house is made of wood or a frame of steel, if your foundation is faulty, and it has a risk of collapsing, then the authorities in charge of housing will inspect and require you to repair the foundation of your home or will declare it unfit for living. Having a knowledge of how the condition of your home foundation is, will help you place measures that will prevent degradation and will make the foundation more stronger and repair the damages caused.
Whenever your foundation has issues, it is advisable to hire the service of a trusted expert to have your home foundation diagnosed and repaired as soon as you notice a problem with the foundation. If you wait too long before taking a step, and a part of your foundation falls, then everything above the foundation will be damaged and will result in you requiring a lot of cash to repair it.
There are varieties of materials that can be used for the walls of your foundation and knowing the type of materials used for your foundation wall is very important in monitoring the total health status of your home foundation and keeping it in good shape. One of the most common materials used in the foundation of your home are cement block and poured concrete. In houses that was built for over 100 years, you will find homes built with foundations made by stones.
Foundations built with poured concrete are able to resist pressure better from moisture and dirt, while cement blocks walls won’t be able to resist all these. Poured concrete and cement blocks can both get issues due to poor or incorrect installation. Water is likely to pass through cement block foundations and will cause water leaking into the basement.
Reasons for foundation problems
There are various numbers of reason which can cause issues to the foundations of your home. Most reasons include mounting of cement block walls or concrete on a soil that is not compatible or stable, not properly draining rain water, not mixing the concrete properly or pouring the concrete with an improper technique. Also, foundation issues can occur as a result of an earth moving construction in a location that is closer to your house, which therefore impacts your home foundation and the soil in and around your foundations.
The major reason for foundation issues for most houses that has been stable before suddenly showing signs of problems is water. If the gutters in your home can’t handle the rainwater in your area or you built your home in a swampy area, you will need to install a gutter that can contain large capacity of rainwater, so that the rain water can properly channel away from your house and won’t get closer to your home foundation.
The increased pressure on your foundation walls is caused by the added water dumped straight into the soil, this also moistens the soil which results in the shifting or settling of your home foundation. Ensure that the downspouts of your gutter are drained away far from the foundation of your home, in other to reduce the amount of water seepage into the soil close to your foundation.
How to identify foundation problems
There is tendency for all foundation to settle. The settling of the foundation for a couple of inches and not usually a cause for concern because it is usually caused by the weight on the foundation and the composition of the soil/dirt. This type of settling is often as a result of the visible small cracks in the floors of the basement, garage concrete and also the foundation walls. Whenever you see cracks around the mentioned areas, you need to take note of them and you might not need the service of an expert to evaluate if the cracks do not get bigger over a long period of time. If the cracks start getting bigger over a period of time, or the foundation walls/basement of your home starts showing signs of bowing or leaning inward, then you definitely need to have the foundation of your home inspected by the appropriate expert or a structural engineer. The signs you need to watch out for on a cement block foundation wall include the sign of bowing, broken/cracked blocks, seepage of water through the wall, cracking of the stair step, are all signs you should watch out for.
Do insurance policies cover foundation repairs?
Most insurances for homeowners won’t cover the repairs of your home’s foundation. Although, it is possible for insurance companies to cover the repairs of your foundation if the damaged was as a result of a natural disaster covered in the insurance policy.
So, you may be able to have the repair of your foundation done by an insurance company if your home was destroyed by a tornado and the foundation got damaged as a result. Most foundation wouldn’t be to get an insurance company to offset the bills for your foundation when the issue is settling or failing of the transformer which is due to the poor conditions and installations. As it is the norm for any insurance policy, ensure that you properly read the language of the policy and if you need to know what is really covered by the insurance policy, then its advisable to ask your insurance agent the right questions.
Repairing your home foundation issues
It’s advisable to contact an expert or a licensed structural engineer first, before contacting any foundation contractor to get estimates for the repair of your foundation. Hire the services of an expert or structural engineer whose job is design a repair plan and give you an opinion on the state of your foundation. Hiring the service of a structural engineer expert could help you save some cash since their objective is to offer you with input on what the issue might be instead of selling you repairs for your foundation issues. The fact that most foundation companies are not out because of the money does not mean that there aren’t some companies who will prescribe a really expensive repair without understanding what the issue of your foundation is. You will get a detailed report on the issues with your foundation and a design proposal on the solution to your foundation issues from an expert or a structural engineer after analyzing your foundation. By using the report given to you by an expert, you can discuss with different foundation repair contractors and ask for the price estimates of the work based on the repair solution being proposed for your foundation, instead of getting different thoughts on what is needed with estimates that differs.
Selling a home with foundation issues
When you are compelled to sell a house that has issues with its foundation, it is advisable to disclose to a potential buyer the issues with your home foundation and quote the right price. A potential buyer will wonder what else is wrong with your home and what else has not been disclosed by you and may likely walk out of the deal to buy your property if foundation issues are discovered during your property’s inspection. When the issues of your home’s foundation are not repaired, potential buyers may decide to walk away upon finding out about your foundation undisclosed issues. If all the issues with the foundation of your home is disclosed accordingly and the house is not overpriced, a potential buyer might just take it upon themselves to repair the problems with your home foundation.
Failure to disclose any issues with your home foundation can result in potential buyers filing a lawsuit once they discover the problems. The court can compel you to take back your property, return all the money paid by the buyer and you might also be required to pay punitive damage for non-disclosure. Also, the court might compel you to pay the cost for the repair to the buyer and as well as force you to pay punitive damages. The most advisable bet is to make full disclosure on the issues with your foundation to your potential buyer.
Repairing of your foundation issues is the best thing to do in the long run if you have means to repair it. It easier to sell your home when potentials buyers have the knowledge of the foundation been properly repaired and the repairs made has a lifetime warranty covered. You will also be able to get a better price when trying to sell your home since the foundation issues will limit the price you can quote to potential buyers who are looking for a deal that is favorable to them and have an understanding that the issues with the foundation can be repaired at the right cost.
In order to sell a home with foundation issues, it is important to make full disclosure to potential buyers about the issues with your foundation and quote a suitable price.
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