Structural Inspection | When buying a home it’s easy to spot cosmetic things like ugly wallpaper and outdated cabinets, but the important stuff isn’t always that obvious. Most homebuyers have a home inspection prior to drawing up any papers, but we’d like to urge you to also require a structural inspection before it’s all said and done. Structural issues in a home aren’t always the easiest things to see for the untrained eye, but will cost that eye a lot of money if missed. A proper structural inspection will give you the knowledge necessary to take the risk or say bye-bye before it’s too late.
Here are four common issues found during structural inspection:
Foundation – Things you don’t want to see are loose bolts, large cracks, or misaligned joints. If a crack starts large and narrows down, it may be an indication that the home is experience extreme settling. Don’t be alarmed by tiny cracks, as this is normal and usually completely harmless.
Load-bearing walls and roofing – Load-bearing walls, and exterior walls of the home, keep a home standing by supporting the entire home’s weight. They are placed between the home’s footings and its upper roof supports, however shifting occurs for a number of reasons. Extreme weather, temperature changes, and a home’s age can all contribute to shifting. A structural inspection of the home by a licensed professional will alert you to any signs of roof drooping or structural shifting of the home.
Leaning and settling – Poor construction is the most influential cause of leaning in a home. It is easily spotted in cracks around doors and windows, difficulty opening and closing doors and windows, and slanting walls. While some settling over time is natural, it is important to have the home’s safety validated by a structural inspection.
Rotting joists – A number of things can contribute to rotting joists, but they are pretty easily recognizable and probably the cheapest to fix amongst this list. Looking in your crawlspace, you should be able to identify joists that are crumbling due to weather or bugs. Fear not, just be sure to look for this type of decay on the results of your structural inspection.