House Foundation Cracks and Much More – What to Look for When Buying an Older Home
Flipping houses has become the rage today. It’s a great way to get the house of your dreams without completely draining your bank account and credit. However, if you’re buying an older home, you should be prepared to do a lot of repairs on it.
Foundation Issues in Older Homes
Foundations in older homes are often riddled with foundation problems. One reason for this is the construction methods and materials used. The foundations of many homes weren’t built with materials that are as stable as concrete that is used to build modern slab foundations. They therefore don’t have the same staying power as modern slab foundations.
Another reason is normal deterioration over time. Years or erosion, pressure from surrounding soils and exposure to the elements can result in serious foundation issues over time. It is therefore not surprising that an old foundation will have serious problems.
Signs of foundation issues
If you’re interested in purchasing an older home to flip, you may want to look out for the following signs of foundation issues.
- House foundation cracks
This is one of the most obvious signs of foundation issues. House foundation cracks can occur on both the interior and exterior surfaces of the home’s foundation. The level of damage and the cause of the cracking can be determined through close examination of the crack.
- Uneven floors
This is a subtler sign of foundation issues. You can identify uneven floors by checking how doors and windows fit into their frames. If the doors and windows aren’t able to shut properly or if they stick when they are shut, then you are probably dealing with uneven floors.
Another easy way of identifying an uneven floor is by dropping a pen on the floor. Watch how it rolls. If it continues to roll for a while then this is an indication of a foundation problem.
- Leaking slabs
Many homes have their plumbing running under the bottom of the foundation. These pipes can be placed under great pressure as the foundation shifts and settles. Check the slab for foundation leaks to determine the level of settling of the foundation.
Leaks may not always be obvious. You may have to look for other signs of leaking such as the growth of mold or mildew.
Just because a house has foundation problems doesn’t mean you should back out of purchasing it. Have a professional contractor inspect the home and determine how extensive the damage is. They will also give you a quotation for the repairs required. You can make an informed choice thereafter.