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My wife and I are in the process of purchasing our first home. It is 8 years old. We have found one that we like, but I am a little hesitant about going through for two reasons.

  1. The foundation seems to have risen up or sank a little in the living room area of the house. This is noticed because the tile is slightly uneven along the grout line.
  2. There is a slight crack in the sheetrock above the sliding glass door in the same room.

We had the house inspected and they gave it the ok and said it was a result of settling and clay in the soil Still a little worried we had the house inspected by an engineer who gave us a a report that said there was no structural concerns or issues.

Here are excerpts from the engineer's report:

  • 2.1 Floors (Structural) The Engineer performed a thorough investigation of the foundation and the floor structure. While the finished floor surface was not completely level and the floor displayed evidence of some movement [the floor was raised and sloped away from the area at which the floor was slightly raised], the structural system which created the floor and the foundation systems was intact and fully functional on the day of the investigation. As mentioned an area of the finished floor system displayed a slight raise which made the floor slightly uneven; however the raise was not significant and did not create any type of structural defect. In the event the future occupants of the home would like a floor free of the slight raise which existed on the day of the investigation the floor structure could be restored to be free of this slight raised area. Again it is important to note the area at which the floor structure was raised exhibited only a slight raise and the raised floor did not create any structural defect [other than the esthetic nature of the slight raise in the floor there was nothing wrong with the structural system of the foundation or the floor]. Any correction would only be because the future occupants of the home desired a completely level floor structure.

  • 2.4 Ceilings (Structural) The Engineer performed a thorough investigation of the attic area and the structural members which make up the ceiling structural system. While the gypsum board on the ceiling structure showed evidence of movement at one time [the sheetrock was cracked at an area other than the joint at which the two sheets of gypsum board met], the structural system which created the ceiling and roof structures was intact and fully functional without any defects on the day of the investigation. As mentioned an area of the finished drywall system displayed a crack in the ceiling however the crack was not significant and was not a result of any structural defect. In the event the future occupants of the home would like a ceiling free of cracks this area of the ceiling could be restored to be free of this small crack. Again it is important to note this small crackin the finished drywall system should not be a cause for concern [other than the esthetic nature of the crack there was nothing wrong with the structural system of the ceiling].

The house we are looking at is in Yuma, Arizona, in the Barkley Ranch neighborhood. We are concerned that their could have been structural problems and may turn out to be serious or costly in the future.

I guess my questions is would any of you have any hesitancy in buying the house even after the engineers report?

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What is your question? –  DA01 Jun 5 at 7:59
    
Some formatting might be useful. Reading a giant brick of text is daunting, and readers will likely avoid it. Try to make your question more apparent, and include only relevant information. Photos are also useful. –  Tester101 Jun 5 at 12:01
1  
Unless you're looking for anything that may help with walking out of the deal, these two issues don't point to "structural problems". At best, they're aesthetic and something you can fix if you really want to. If it has been copied over exactly, your engineer's report clearly states that there's nothing wrong structurally. Is there anything else that the report states which makes you consider that there are any structural problems? –  alt Jun 5 at 12:54
    
Would you have any hesitancy in purchasing the house after the engineers report. –  07Roadrunner Jun 5 at 14:36
    
No there is nothing else in the engineers report that states structural problems. The only concern was that the fact it was mentioned that it could be related to a soil issue. The area the house is in is in an area of clay soil so that is what possibly caused the possible uneven floor. –  07Roadrunner Jun 5 at 14:58

1 Answer 1

-#1 This seems a little odd. Not sure how old the house is but all houses will settle. But it seems like there is a crack and one side raised a little. I would have to see pictures to give you a better answer.

This is an issue. If this house is 50 years old and it happened 45 years ago and there is no moisture concerns then not a big issue. You could fix it by taking out tile, leveling floor and retiling. Not a small job but not "major" either. Now if this crack is new or there is a possible water issue because of the crack (given your area probably not but you never know) then yea maybe it is an issue. Also if there are land changes and the concrete is being pushed the buckling/crack could get bigger. This still might not be a "major" concern but could cost a few thousand to fix. I would need to see a few pictures and more details on house.

-#2 This is nothing. Minor cracks in ceilings are from movement and can also be caused by drastic changes in humidity or temperature (that is why popcorn ceilings were used in desert areas). The fact is if the house humidity levels get too low the gypsum becomes more likely to fracture - and at the same time the low humidity levels would cause the structure to shift slightly. This is nothing.

Would I buy the house? I would need to see pictures of floor to give you a better answer. Also if I was already thinking to myself either of these I would probably get it - the floor issue is barely noticeable and looks fine or the floor is old anyway so I could level it when I rip it up.

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DMoore Thanks for the answer. If I could figure out how to post the engineers report for you to see the pictures I would. If you would not mind looking at it. –  07Roadrunner Jun 5 at 15:02
    
@07Roadrunner If you can't find a less kludgy way to get them online: just take pictures of the relevant pictures in the report, upload them to imgur/etc and post links to them as a comments. From there a user with more rep can edit them into the question. –  Dan Neely Jun 6 at 14:43

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