When buying a home, it’s important to make sure the house’s structure is sound. There are several signs you can look for when assessing a home’s structural integrity. The best way to determine the structural integrity of a house is by having a professional inspection done by a home inspector or structural engineer. Here are just a few signs a home is structurally sound.
1. Even Walls
Walls that are not even or have a noticeable tilt may be an indication of foundation settlement or bowing. Check the corners of rooms and right angles to see if they line up properly. If they don’t, it may be a structural issue.
2. Proper Door and Window Alignment are Signs a Home is Structurally Sound
Doors and windows should be level with the floor and wall, with no gaps between them or the frame. This is particularly important to check in older homes, as door and window alignment change over time due to the settling of the structure.
3. Signs a Home is Structurally Sound: No Visible Sagging or Bowing
Sagging ceilings, floors, or walls can be a sign of structural weakness. If the house has visible signs of bowing or sagging, it’s best to have it inspected by a professional before making an offer on the home. Pay particular attention to the roof line, where sagging can be a sign of significant structural issues.
4. No Visible Foundation Cracks
Cracks in the foundation can be a sign that the foundation has shifted over time and may need structural repairs. Check for any visible cracks in the basement or around the exterior walls of the house.
5. Level Floors
Sloping floors can indicate issues with load-bearing beams, support columns, or sagging joists. Stand in a corner of the room and look for any noticeable slope that could signal a problem with the floor’s integrity.
6. Absence of Mold
Moisture and mold can be a sign of structural issues in the house, such as poor drainage, water infiltration, or foundation settlement. Check the basement and crawlspace for visible moisture or mold, as well as outside sources of water, such as gutters and downspouts that may be directing water toward the foundation.
If a home is showing any of these signs, it’s best to get a professional inspection to assess the issue before making an offer on the house. Structural damage can be expensive to fix, and it’s essential to make sure any potential home is in good structural condition before committing to a purchase.
Cole’s Inspection Services provides home inspections in Statesville, NC, and the surrounding area. If you’re buying or selling a home, contact us to request our services.