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Old 02-21-2014, 03:01 PM   #16
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Frankly this whole thread is a little strange. Your builder misreads the plans and builds an entire floor the wrong height. No one notices until it is finished. Now you are stuck with a partially constructed house that fails to meet the plans. And the same incompetent builder who cannot read the plans in the first place is going to present you with a suitable solution. I agree with previous posters, you need to have a professional architect and engineer review the "fix" to make sure it will be at least as good as if the builder had correctly constructed, and of course your attorney needs to review the agreement to repair to make sure it is properly drafted so you do not have to go through this again if the builder fails to properly construct a second time.

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Old 02-21-2014, 03:55 PM   #17
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


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If they are lifting the 2nd floor up why don't they just remove and reframe first floor.
I agree. This question should be answered. Would seem a proper fix.
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Old 02-22-2014, 07:55 AM   #18
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


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Originally Posted by Newperson View Post
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.
I was thinking along the same lines as Justin. You may end up with some unforeseen problems with either extra framing where it wouldn't normally be as far as making changes in the future, insulation not up to snuff,etc. I would think that adding that foot on top of the wall would not be as strong as the properly framed walls. May have a tendency to act as a hinge in the wall. Just my opinion. Again, if it were my dream house, I wouldn't settle for anything less than what it was supposed to be in the first place. That's what prints are for. If the builder refuses to do the proper repair, which would be to raise the second floor, tear out the first and reframe, then I would recommend getting a good attorney. No builder likes to hear that. One other option, how attached are you to this particular lot? Does the builder have another lot he could build you the same house on? Then he could just finish this house and sell it, use it as a model, etc.
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Old 02-27-2014, 09:53 AM   #19
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Attachment 81910Ok I have rec'd the plans to fix the ceiling height. This has been approved by a structural engineer.
Does this look ok to you all?
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height-9feet_wall_elevation.jpg   Raising 1st floor ceiling height-9feet_wall_section.jpg  

Last edited by Newperson; 02-27-2014 at 10:13 AM. Reason: Inserting Picture
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Old 02-27-2014, 10:14 AM   #20
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Submitting Pictures
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height-9feet_wall_elevation.jpg   Raising 1st floor ceiling height-9feet_wall_section.jpg  
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Old 02-27-2014, 10:17 AM   #21
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


What about door and window transoms? Did your plans call for these. I have 9' ceiling and made the mistake not to add them. Now there is a 2' of empty space above windows and doors which is a little awkward.

The plans are a little hard to read. Tension ties are a good idea. I would be fine with it on interior walls but i would still want it done right on exterior. The electrician plumber and hvac guys are not going to like it and will hack it all up .
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Old 02-27-2014, 10:40 AM   #22
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


2nd set is clearer.
The cost of all those tension ties are going to cost about the same as just replacing 2x6 studs.
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Old 02-27-2014, 11:17 AM   #23
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


Uploading another picture of the plans. Hopefully these are much clearer.

So Once again... does this look like a solid sound repair plan. As I said the builder is writing in contract that all repair will be as per town codes and having a Sr. Structural engineer sign off on it with his name. Also has named the company doing this repair. I checked all their credentials. They are coming Ok.
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Old 02-27-2014, 11:23 AM   #24
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


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2nd set is clearer.
The cost of all those tension ties are going to cost about the same as just replacing 2x6 studs.
From your comment, it looks like you are against adding all the tention ties and just going with replacing the studs to match the 9 feet height. So besides, the cost factor, doing this repair with tention ties has any down side over replacing the entire stud?
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Old 02-27-2014, 11:38 AM   #25
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


All the same reasons mention before. Insulation, problems running duct work. Future work done to house.
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Old 02-27-2014, 12:00 PM   #26
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


I agree with justink and firehawk that the studding should be remove and built according to the plans. The plumbers, electricians and HVAC contractors will have a nightmare running utilities to the upper floor. My last job was working as a third party construction inspector for the person havng the work done. I found many problems with construction errors prior to the contractor finishing the sections being built. Not all were the contractors fault. Some were the engineer/architects fault. Most problems were found in the foundation. Bearing grade insufficient or concrete footer and walls not built according to design.

Our company was called in when the owner of a new house didn't think the contractor knew what he was doing. I was sent out with a current set of plans to do an inspection. The contractor said that it wasn't necessary because the building inspector had been there that morning.

Within 1 hours, I found 12 serious mistakes and the contractor hadn't even got the basement covered. I called my boss to contact the owner and he also sent out one our engineers to cover my ass. Needless to say after 2 hours of listening to the contractor whine about the cost of fixing the problems, the owner removed him from the job and hired another contractor. I was called into court for the lawsuit that followed and the owner won the judgement against the first contractor.

I know I might have changed the course of this thread, but when someone is paying $250K or more for a house the cost of a reputable construction inspector is well worth the money.
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Old 02-27-2014, 12:01 PM   #27
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


SO their solution is what most of us thought. To build a small wall on top of the existing 8' wall to get to the 9' height. I do not envy the predicament you are in. This is a major decision.

What kind of time frame do you have to accept this remedy.

Have you thought about requiring the builder to establish an escrow account for say $25K for 36 months in case of any unforeseen issues.
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Old 02-27-2014, 01:12 PM   #28
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


It couldn't have been in the plans submitted.
And now the prints ( with changes) would have to be re-submitted and approved.
If it's not built according to the plans you will not get a certificate of occupancy.

Just my opinion.... Pay a lot less for the house as is... Or, get your money back and run like hell.

A certificate of occupancy is a document issued by a local government agency or building department certifying a building's compliance with applicable building codes and other laws, and indicating it to be in a condition suitable for occupancy.[1]
The procedure and requirements for the certificate vary widely from jurisdiction to jurisdiction and on the type of structure. In the United States, obtaining a certificate is generally required whenever:
a new building is constructed
a building built for one use is to be used for another (e.g. an industrial building converted for residential use)
occupancy of a commercial or industrial building changes, or ownership of a commercial, industrial, or multiple-family residential building changes
The purpose of obtaining a certificate of occupancy is to prove that, according to the law, the house or building is in livable condition. Generally, such a certificate is necessary to be able to occupy the structure for everyday use, as well as to be able to sign a contract to sell the space and close on a mortgage for the space.
A certificate of occupancy is evidence that the building complies substantially with the plans and specifications that have been submitted to, and approved by, the local authority. It complements a building permit—a document that must be filed by the applicant with the local authority before construction to indicate that the proposed construction will adhere to ordinances, codes and laws.
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Old 02-27-2014, 03:18 PM   #29
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


i dont know if the code is the same where you are to where i am. but all bearing wall studs must be continous in a wall assembly..

you will have a hinge point otherwise.. just make the builder give you a rebate for the difference in material cost for the studs,, extra insulation, extra drywall and sidng

heres another question. how big are the windows going in those walls.. reason being if they are less than 18" off the floor they either have to be made of tempered glass or have to have restraints on them which inhibit how far open they open or a bar across them to stop someone from falling out of them, namely small children
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Old 02-27-2014, 03:56 PM   #30
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Raising 1st floor ceiling height


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If it's not built according to the plans you will not get a certificate of occupancy.
The CO is the least of his worries. The building department will approve whatever change is made once the PE stamp is on the revision.

If it were me, I'd stay as is and ask for some upgrades like a finished basement or the like.

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