Foundation Settling Problems

DSCN1294This enterprising young man makes his living by buying properties in bad shape, then fixing them up and selling. Real estate pros call this “flipping” the house. Now, this particular home may look pretty tidy, but it had some foundation settlement problems, similar to many older homes on relatively steeply sloping lots.

DSCN1292One must take care in this situation. There are a number of contractors, many legitimate, who can shore up a sagging foundation, and even lift the wood framed portion of the home so that it is level again. However, not all of those contractors really know what they are doing.

DSCN1290In this case, the flipper had obtained a bid from a contractor to install steel pipe piles around the perimeter – for a princely sum, I might add. Wanting a second opinion, he contacted us at CSES Engineering, I made the site visit and examined the house and the proposed plans. I was able to point out that the piles intended for about one third of the foundation were not necessary; another third were located in such a way as to reduce their effectiveness.

Finally, I referred him to a contractor who is actually competent in this sort of work, and provided a suitable pile placement plan.