The foundation of a home may be its single most important structural feature. After all, if there are issues with your foundation your home’s other supporting structures can fail. Whether you’re buying new house or wanting to assess your current home, it’s important to know whether you have foundation problems.
Cracks in the Wall and Ceiling
One of the first obvious signs of foundation problems are cracks in the wall and ceiling. It’s important to assess any cracks you see. They may simply be cracks in the paint, which aren’t a cause for concern. However, if the cracks go deep into the plaster and the wallboard then you may have a problem on your hands. Cracks in the walls and ceiling are generally caused by the soil shifting under your home. When the soil shifts, the foundation can also move. That pressure is translated upwards and your walls and ceiling are forced to make adjustments to compensate. These cracks often form around windows and doors.
Cracks in the Exterior
If you have a brick exterior it’s much easier to see cracks in the house than if you have vinyl siding. However, you can still detect foundation problems. Look around the windows on the outside of your home. Is the house pulling away from the windows? Are there cracks under the windows or alongside doorways? This is a common signal that it may be time to hire a foundation contractor.
Signs of Serious Foundation Issues
When your basement floor is cracked or you notice that a wall in your home is split in half and the crack runs from top bottom, you don’t have any time to waste. Other signs that your foundation is in serious trouble include sloping floors and doors and windows pulling away from the wall. Additionally, if you notice a crack and one side of the crack is elevated or bowed out, then you can be pretty certain that there are foundation problems.
What to Do if You Have Signs of Foundation Problems?
The first step is to take a deep breath. In many cases the fix for a foundation problem isn’t as complicated or expensive as you might think. You may be able to pin the foundation and pour some new concrete to fix the problem. Costs can vary from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand. If you notice cracking in the walls, floor, or ceiling of your home consider getting your home looked at by a few foundation contractors. These specialists should be able to give you an idea of what’s going on as well as a quote on fixing it. You can then hire the best contractor for your needs and budget.