10 Signs of Foundation Issues
Is that little crack in your foundation just a harmless sign of the house settling? Or is it the first symptom of a massive foundation mess? If you’re worried about a major foundation issue, here are the top 10 warning signs:
- Leaning walls. (You can check this with a level.)
- Floors sloping at an angle.
- Cracks in the walls, especially over doorways or windows.
- Doors tend to get stuck, or are difficult to shut.
- Windows won’t close completely, or won’t open at all.
- Cracks in a tile floor.
- Gap between the wall and the ceiling.
- Cracked glass in windows.
- Water in the basement or crawl space.
- Visible bulges or cracks in the foundation (1/4” or wider)
Should You Get a Home Inspection?
If you suspect that your house may need foundation repairs, it’s time to call in a professional to assess the damage.
Getting a home inspection is a good place to start, but many home inspectors won’t know how to tell the full extent of a foundation problem. To get the whole picture, you may want to hire a structural engineer.
That could set you back $500 to $1000, so be prepared. But even if the structural engineer doesn’t turn up any major issues, it’s still a good investment in your peace of mind. Besides, it’s only a fraction of the cost of the average foundation repair.
How Much Does a Foundation Repair Cost?
Foundation problems don’t get better on their own. The longer you wait to make a repair, the worse the damage will become. And fixing a cracked foundation isn’t cheap.
The average home foundation costs thousands of dollars to repair. Most homeowners spend up to $6,300 repairing a foundation, according to the home improvement website HomeAdvisor. Depending on the nature of the repair, some homeowners spend as much as $11,000.
Is It Harder to Sell a Home with Foundation Damage?
If you discover that your house needs foundation repair, think twice before starting work. Repairing the foundation requires pulling certain permits, which will become a matter of public record. That could put a red flag on your house in many buyers’ eyes.
Buyers frequently won’t even look at a house with foundation problems. That means that even if you finish the repair, you may not get the opportunity to explain to shoppers that the problem has been fixed.
If you have a badly damaged foundation, find out if you can sell your home as-is to a real estate investor, without having to do any foundation repair work. Real estate investors have experience in fixing structural problems, and can offer you cash for your home.
That saves you the considerable expense of hiring a structural engineer and trying to repair a major foundation problem. Instead, you can sell your house for cash before that crack in your foundation breaks the bank.