Moneymoneyhomebuying

Mon Jul 15, 2019, 09:42 PM

Would you buy a home with foundation repairs?

Relocating for work and found the perfect home. The problem is that it had $8000 in foundation repair work a few years back. Concret slab foundation on a sloping lot with retaining walls supporting one side of the home. Oh and the area has expansive clay soil. Yea or nay?
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Reply Would you buy a home with foundation repairs? (Original post)
TexMexNext Jul 2019 OP
RCW2014 Jul 2019 #1
TexMexNext Jul 2019 #6
BigKahunna2.0 Jul 2019 #2
TexMexNext Jul 2019 #5
uncledad Jul 2019 #3
TexMexNext Jul 2019 #4
Currentsitguy Jul 2019 #7

Response to TexMexNext (Original post)

Mon Jul 15, 2019, 09:55 PM

1. Foundation issues in the Houston area are more the rule than exception. Fact that it

was repaired probably makes it more solid than unshored up new construction.

Did the company that previously did the work guarantee that work?

Find a damn good independent inspector that isnt in the foundation repair biz would be my advice.

When I lived in those parts, my last new construction had soaker tubing around the perimeter of the foundation for those dry spells.

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Response to RCW2014 (Reply #1)

Fri Jul 19, 2019, 11:21 PM

6. I hear yah, I've been lucky to never have had foundation work

Moving to DFW where the soil is worse than Houston....

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Response to TexMexNext (Original post)

Mon Jul 15, 2019, 10:21 PM

2. I've lived in Colorado and owned homes in areas of expansive soil and mine subsidence.

Have a licensed structural engineer inspect the home thoroughly, review the earlier damage and review the repairs previously done.

If there is a lot of new concrete or stucco work it might be hiding something.

CYA.... and good luck

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Response to BigKahunna2.0 (Reply #2)

Fri Jul 19, 2019, 11:19 PM

5. Thanks BigK

We moved on to another home after reading through the disclosures. Two foundation repairs in 2016 is more than I could live with.

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Response to TexMexNext (Original post)

Tue Jul 16, 2019, 09:13 AM

3. As recommended: Have a licensed structural engineer...

Inspect and go from there. Here in Richmond Va there are sections of shrink-swell soil ( high clay content ) so it's not uncommon for repairs to foundations. A local joke is: how often do you re-plaster a seam in the dining room?

Center hallways may have a list to one side and closet doors need to be planed a tad to keep from sticking after the house settles. If you weren't told what and where to look, you wouldn't notice it.

The engineering report done prior to the building of our home included extra support and truss work. It was done and still, I mud one corner of the dining room every few years during drought seasons. lol

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Response to uncledad (Reply #3)

Fri Jul 19, 2019, 11:17 PM

4. Agreed

We passed on this home. They had the foundation fail twice in 2016 and paid $12K for the repair work. They second failure wasn't covered under the warranty for the earlier work. I'm gun-shy on that house.

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Response to TexMexNext (Original post)

Mon Jul 22, 2019, 01:48 PM

7. As a rule of thumb

The foundation as a whole is more important than the repair. If the subbase is poor, or the turndown slab is too thin no amount of repair is going to remediate the underlying problem. Clay soil can be an issue because now you are contending with poor drainage. Water has to go somewhere and if it can't percolate into the soil easily then it's going to flow under your foundation and cause problems unless the entire perimeter has been french drained. A 4 inch slab is generally called for, but I really am uncomfortable with anything less than 6.

If I were shopping, I'd bring a shovel. Dig a small hole, maybe about 2 feet deep near the foundation of the house. If the agent bitches screw'em. Now go and tour the inside and TAKE YOUR TIME. Come back out after an hour or two and look at your hole. If it has begun filling with water don't walk, RUN from the property. If there aren't already problems there soon will be.

Any property like that if I were building on it, before I even poured a slab I'd want to drive or pour pilings into the ground if not down to bedrock then at least 20 or 30 feet down to make sure that slab isn't going anywhere.

Also bring a level and a carpenter's square. Make sure the entire structure isn't sinking in one corner or side. Put a level on the floors inside to check the same, and to make sure there isn't any heave going on. Check the corners of a few rooms for true. Lots of 43 or 47 degree angles are going to indicate a structural problem in the making.

If there is a crawl space, get under and crawl around. Look for signs of compromise along the sill plate. If the house shows signs of having moved on the slab it has problems larger than you can probably address in a cost effective manner. Also look at the slab itself. Look for spalling on the surface. If it is, then the cure time on the slab was rushed and the PSI strength of the concrete is seriously weakened.

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