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Old 02-20-2014, 05:55 PM   #1
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


My Builder's architect submitted incorrect plans to the contractor as a result the 1st floor ceiling height now needs to be raised as per the correct plan of 9 Feet, from its current 8 foot height.
The house is framed, 2nd story is up as well as the roof.
The builder / architect have realized their mistake and have offered to "repair" the problem and raise the height to 9 foot as per the plan. Also, they will have a structural engineer sign off on the plan before repair process begins. And me and my wife as buyers would need to re-sign the new "repair" plans for us to agree and work to begin.
My main concern is whether this process of lifting the house and raising the roof intrusive to my house and can expose the house to future structural issues? In other words by doing this am I putting the longevity of my house structure at any kind of risks? or is this a fairly proven process which has been done by many builders and by raising the ceiling the builder will infact now reinforce more supporting beams and in turn make it stronger than even before.
Pls suggest your expert advise on this matter. thank you.

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Old 02-20-2014, 06:15 PM   #2
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


My "expert" advise ????? With no plans or procedure described, you want my expert opinion on if they are good ???

This is a Do-It Yourself Forum. The "expert" is the structural engineer that has been hired to create the plans.

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Old 02-20-2014, 06:43 PM   #3
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Sorry, I do not have the "Repair" plans on hand to share that.

The only advise I was looking for was whether raising a ceiling is a doable thing for builders in this day and age and something I should not stress myself with too much as Structural engineer will make sure process of re-reinforcements is in place.
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Old 02-20-2014, 07:24 PM   #4
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


That is not an easy thing to do. I think you should just settle for the 8' ceilings and a huge discount. I can't imagine how no one noticed this earlier. Poor job site supervision.
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Old 02-20-2014, 07:57 PM   #5
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


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Originally Posted by Newperson View Post
Sorry, I do not have the "Repair" plans on hand to share that.

The only advise I was looking for was whether raising a ceiling is a doable thing for builders in this day and age and something I should not stress myself with too much as Structural engineer will make sure process of re-reinforcements is in place.
Ayuh,... It's Doable, 'n so long as designed properly, it'll be fine, or better than before,...

However,...
I like sixeightten's idea,....

8' ceilin's are plenty tall, 'n ya might negotiate a serious discount for the mistake,...
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Old 02-20-2014, 08:18 PM   #6
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Do you know what the mark up was to go from 8 to 9' ceilings? Usually several thousand dollars. So you should be entitled to that, plus a few thousand for them not having to spend more than a few thousand to raise everything. Maybe you could turn it into upgrades down the road?
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Old 02-20-2014, 08:57 PM   #7
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Thank you all for your input.
Well, let me say that I had paid $7200 to get the ceiling's upgraded to 9 feet.
The home is pretty much all upgraded. Therefore, if I leave the ceilings at 8 feet, it will bring down the entire look of the place and will shadow the rest of the upgrades in place. To me, the difference between an 8 feet Vs 9 feet ceiling is substantial from a cosmetic purpose. It really does make a huge difference to me and even if the builder pays me 3 times the amount, I would still not be happy. I will not think the builder paying me back 4to5 times which would be a starting point to even consider leaving the ceiling at 8 feet.

I am happy to know that Bondo has given some positives to the notion of making the repairs to correct the height of the ceiling to 9 feet.

The fact that the house just got done with Framing, and 2nd floor and roof, and nothing else, and other work ( electrical, sheet rock, plumbing etc are far way out) I hope this fix is not too intrusive.

Well, keeping my hopes high on hearing back from the builder about some solid "Repair" Plans which of course I will have an attorney approve before signing off on it.

At that point, I can probably include them here to see if it makes sense to you all with more knowledge on this than me.

thanks again fellas!!!
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Old 02-20-2014, 10:34 PM   #8
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Np, I don't know how they will do this job of raising the ceiling, but if it were me, I would want the whole second floor raised up and out of the way. Then tear out ALL the first floor walls and rebuild the first floor with the nine foot high walls, just like it would have been had they done it right the first time. Then set the second floor back on and fasten down. I wouldn't let them either scab on to the existing first floor walls to gain the extra foot, or sister taller studs along side the existing.
I remember the first house I ever built for a customer was a 5000 sq. ft. Georgian style colonial with a full finished walkout basement. It was in a very ritzy development. When the truck with the trusses arrived late one afternoon, he got stuck in the mud. I took a look at the trusses and realized right away they weren't built according to print. They were supposed to have a raised heal to allow for wood trim under the eaves. I told the driver when the tow truck comes, to keep on going and take the trusses back. The sales rep from the truss company wanted to scab some 2 x 10's on top of each truss to jury rig a fix. I told him I would burn the trusses if they showed up on site that way. They built new trusses the right way and delivered them finally.
Moral or the story: you're in the driver's seat, have them rebuild it the right way, not what's cheaper for the builder.
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Old 02-21-2014, 10:28 AM   #9
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Thank you firehawkmph for your advise.

I am worried that it will not be an easy battle with the Builder to make it do it correctly as you prescribed. But I am willing to fight it all the way.

Let's just say I don't come out a winner, what would you say are negatives about doing it by either

1. Scabing onto the existing walls
2. Sister taller studs along side existing would be.

And which one out of 1. & 2. is a better option.

Thank you.
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Old 02-21-2014, 10:46 AM   #10
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


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I wouldn't let them either scab on to the existing first floor walls to gain the extra foot, or sister taller studs along side the existing.
I agree with Hawk. But when you do get your plans or they let you know how they are going to remedy this, post back here and let us know.
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Old 02-21-2014, 10:58 AM   #11
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Absolutely.. I am hoping for a turnaround time of a week.
I will attach the "repair" plans here!! thanks guys!!
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Old 02-21-2014, 12:49 PM   #12
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


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The builder / architect have realized their mistake and have offered to "repair" the problem and raise the height to 9 foot as per the plan. Also, they will have a structural engineer sign off on the plan before repair process begins. And me and my wife as buyers would need to re-sign the new "repair" plans for us to agree and work to begin.
Whatever repair the builder and his structural engineer suggest, with all due respect, you would be a fool to sign off on anything without getting your own independent professional to validate this fix. And by professional I do not mean on an internet forum.
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Old 02-21-2014, 02:19 PM   #13
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Builder called me to notify that they have found a professional 3rd party company that their structural engineer has recommended, which deals with moving houses from one place to another and has experience with floor lifts using cranes. While he sets up the plans on paper, he told me that the plan of action would be to lift the top floor and then add onto the walls of the 1st floor. In this process they will use steel column reinforcements. He told me that the costs to do all this is $17,000.00 and he would obviously cover that. He reassured me verbally that by putting in steel beam that end result would come out even better than what it would have been prior to the mistake.
But as Hammerlane suggested, I should run the plans by my own professional as well.
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Old 02-21-2014, 03:38 PM   #14
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Steel Beam ? where? I would not be happy which a hack job. Maybe it will be strong when its done but what happens when you want to do work to the house in the future? Maybe take down a wall, add more or bigger windows, add opening to sunroom. Even trying to fish an electrical,cable internet wire. It would be a nightmare.
Plus with all the extra studs walls it will not be properly insulated.
At the very min. I would ask for 1" xps insulation on the outside and spray foam added to inside.
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Old 02-21-2014, 03:48 PM   #15
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Also with 9' ceilings you should have higher windows or transoms above windows and doors. So all the windows and doors need to be reframed. If they are lifting the 2nd floor up why don't they just remove and reframe first floor.

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