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Old 08-20-2011, 05:43 PM   #1
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Not sure where to turn -

I would love any input from anyone kind enough to view a couple clips I took during an inspection of a home we recently made an offer on. This is the link to the home (figured that would be easier than typing all the specs)
The problem is with 'settlement' . Was built in 2005 and had pool installed in 2006. I had a foundation repair man inspect the property due to some 'vertical cracking' in the retaining wall, as well as cracking of the driveway near the utility room section next to garage.
There is a very long horizontal hairline crack on the side of the house where the a/c units are (not in videos) - the crack is located at the base of the bottom brick where the veneer sits on the foundation (? don't know proper terms) --
Bottom line is this. The corner of the pool (right front corner is 1 1/2 inches lower than the right rear) and the right rear corner of the house is ~ 1/4 inch 'lower' than the left rear corner (where the utility room/garage is) ..
I was rather shocked when the walls 'wobbled' when the inspector pushed on them (both left and right walls - [garage side and opposite side of house] )
My questions are: what does it take to resecure the veneer to the frame? (I think the builder stopped installing brick ties about 2/3 up)
What is 'missing' from framing support in the attic (I know I'm asking alot)?
Do you think $5200 would cover 'securing' brick veneer and adding additional 'framing' to attic?
I posted the short clips from the inspection here
The house was also inspected twice by a structural engineer (2010 and 2011) and I can forward these if desired.
Any helpful advice would be appreciated. We offered >20k less than asking price and they are now offering 5200 for 'repairs' ???


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Old 08-20-2011, 06:40 PM   #2
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How did they arrive at $5200? You need to get quotes for those specific repairs or have them put 10k in escrow, they get back what's left after repairs.


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Old 08-20-2011, 07:21 PM   #3
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Oh made an offer?

The housing boom started in eary 2000...2005 was without a doubt the boom year.....based on what I have seen of friends houses built during those years....they were just slaping them together.....the 70's was another bad time for shody work....

My personal opinion....walk away.....

On the garage looks like they didn't use the right number of straps.....basically, when your laying brick...every few layers you have a strap that is nailed to the stud and that is folded over on top of the brick basically ties the bricks to the wall. Without it you get what you see in the video...about the only proper solution in my mind is to tear down the brick and do it right.

Time to walk away.....while you still have your money....
Even if you are on the right track, you will still get run over if you just sit there.

My 2-Story Addition Build in Progress Link ... My Garage Build Link and My Jeep Build Link
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Old 08-21-2011, 01:44 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by josall View Post
How did they arrive at $5200? You need to get quotes for those specific repairs or have them put 10k in escrow, they get back what's left after repairs.
I don't know how they came up with the figure. Actually, it was $5250 (believe it or not) and they responded within 24 hrs of inspection problems. I never thought of a concept involving Escrow> Thanks for the suggestion; although, then they would probably worry about getting 'nickel and dimed' up to 9,995.00 .

Thanks again,
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Old 08-21-2011, 02:05 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by ddawg16 View Post
Oh made an offer?
We made an offer BEFORE the inspection occurred. I don't know if it's done like that everywhere, but in Louisiana it is. When the home was inspected by the structural engineer AND the foundation repair man (only due to my request), apparently neither one of them 'pushed' on the bricks, nor looked inside the attic (?) I wasn't present for the Engineers Examination - only for the Foundation guy. For what it's worth, this is what the Structural Engineer said:
On February 13, 2010 I inspected the foundation of the property located at 108 Dominos Ridge, Pineville, LA. I was asked to re-inspect the foundation for the
purpose of updating the report.
The residence is an approximately 5 year-old wood frame construction with brick, stone and vinyl veneer resting on a monolithic concrete slab-on-grade
foundation. A separate foundation and retaining wall poured for the swimming pool in the rear of the property.
As with the 2010 inspection, this engineer conducted both an interior and exterior inspection of accessible areas of the residence. There exist several hairline
cracks in the exterior brick wall mortar and stone facing. These cracks did exists in 2010, however have either been resurfaced or the foundation has completed
its post construction “long term” settling and the cracks have closed. It should be noted that none of these cracks appear to propagate from fractures in the
The stone façade’ at the entrance of the residence which had separated from the underline brick wall has closed and is no longer an issue.
The flat steel lintel, supporting the brick above it, at the entrance of the garage has deflected approximately ¼” at the center. This is unchanged from 2010.
Differential settlement measurements were made on all exterior load bearing walls/foundations. Measurements taken in 2010 along these exterior walls
indicated no differential settlement. There was noted some minor settlement on this inspection (2011), however no foundation has exceeded 0.13%. Differential
settlement in excess of 0.30% is generally considered excess and should be addressed. Excessive settlement of the foundation was not found. The cracks noted
in the foundation are aesthetic cracks and have not caused the steel reinforcing bar (rebar) to yield, i.e. the foundation has not failed.

There was noted a ½ “separation on the left side of the entrance of the utility room exterior door. This was not noted on the first inspection and is in the area of
the 0.13% settlement noted above. This separation gap should be filled with a weather proofing grout to insure against moisture intrusion.
In addition to the exterior measurements, settlement was also checked throughout the interior of the residence. No settlement issues were found in the interior.
All windows and doors opened without much difficulty, which is an indication of the “levelness” of the floors and walls.
The drainage around the periphery of the residence, i.e. near the foundation is adequate.
Based on this re-inspection, I do not recommend any foundation remediation at this time. The movement/cracks observed are normal for a structure of this age.
This report is valid for 90 days from the date of inspection.
Rene’ Borrel Consulting Engineer, LLC 312 Treasure Place, Marksville, LA 71351 318.253.0196

Last edited by rntonp; 08-21-2011 at 03:15 AM.
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Old 08-21-2011, 09:03 AM   #6
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The important question is who hired the engineer(s) that did the inspection. You can tell who hired them by who paid for them. I am guessing that you did not pay for these reports, else you would not be on an internet chat room asking questions about the report, you would be discussing these important issues with the engineer that did the inspection and wrote the report.

I have inspected about 100 houses in Louisiana after Katrina and Rita, examining damage. Settlement of Louisiana houses is common due to the presence of expansive clay soil. Problems can be very serious, and the ONLY WAY to determine if your prospective property has an issue is to have YOUR ENGINEER do a thorough examination at your expense, and issue you a confidential report. Your engineer should formulate an opinion as to what the best technique to fix the problem would be, and the should be able to contact a few contractors to get a ballpark figure on how much it would cost to do the repairs. Then you can negotiate.

Asking people on an internet chat group to speculate on cost of repair for your property is not going to get you anything but useless speculation.
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Old 08-21-2011, 10:32 AM   #7
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[quote=Daniel Holzman;712051]
Your right. Thanks. And no, I didn't pay for the engineer reports. He had done one in late 2010 when they first put house on market; I asked for them to obtain a 'comparative' report from same engineer at their expense and they did. Thanks again for your suggestions. Much obliged.


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