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Househunter 05-10-2010 05:36 PM

Rotten Joists
The house we would like to purchase has rotten joists in the basement ceiling. One is under the front door, the other under the house's extension. The inspector estimates that water has been infiltrating these two areas for upwards of 20 years! We know we can replace the joists and stop the water infiltration, but are concerned about the state of the house walls under the brick. How can we find out if the framing is rotten too? Is a thermal cam reliable? How much would it cost to fix such a problem? Is this house structurally unsound?

Daniel Holzman 05-10-2010 07:05 PM

I guess I am a bit puzzled. You had an inspector out to your house, who presumably looked at it, and wrote up a report. Now you are asking the opinion of people who have never been to your house, and cannot possibly know anything about it, especially since you posted no pictures, and offered no details of location, construction methodology, etc. What would you do with answers even if someone offered one?

Millertyme 05-10-2010 07:18 PM

if the house has had any kind of water damage, which it appears it has, I would stay away and look for another house. There is really no way to tell what is behind those walls. The inspector can only guess what may be there but his opinion is the best as he has been there in person. what did he tell you?

Househunter 05-10-2010 07:28 PM

second opinions are often useful... thanks for yours

Thurman 05-10-2010 07:47 PM

I'll have to agree with Daniel. You paid an inspector who, IMO, should have given you a more detailed inspection of this area. A well trained inspector, who cares about his reputation, should have given you the information you are seeking here. He was on site, we cannot see any of this. As far as cost to fix this problem? You are going to have to call in a reputable contractor whom is familiar with this type problem. EVEN IF you have to pay for an estimate, which I doubt, it will be worth having a contractor actually look into the areas they are familiar with when they see this type of problem(s). David

stuart45 05-11-2010 09:25 AM

Most surveyors here would call for a damp and timber rot specialist to do another survey to cover themselves. If dry rot exists in the timber it could be a really serious problem, especially with timber inner walls.
However not all the contractors will give an honest opinion as the free survey is used to find work for themselves.

Househunter 05-11-2010 02:27 PM

Thank you, I was wondering if there was further rot in the walls. I guess the thermal cam may be the way to go?

joed 05-11-2010 02:47 PM

You have to GUESS how much unseen damage there is. A second inspection by a contractor who could give you an estimate of the repair costs. It could be just what you see or it could major repairs.

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