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Old 02-27-2013, 02:00 PM   #1
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Dubious deck structure


Hi,

Not sure if this is the correct subject to post under, but I'll give it a try...

The previous owner of my house had an extension added to their existing deck, but after contacting the city permit dept it looks like no permit was pulled for the work performed. Some of the deck details also look like they would never have passed by the permit inspection, so that seems to confirm my suspicions.

Anyone any ideas where I start?

Cheers
Chris

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Old 02-27-2013, 02:41 PM   #2
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Dubious deck structure


Tear off the unsafe portion and live with what is left or rebuild it with a permit.

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Old 02-27-2013, 03:37 PM   #3
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Dubious deck structure


"At my expense?" was more the direction I was heading in. I guess it is more of a legal question than anything, but I thought I'd throw it out here first, as there are a lot of good brains on this forum that may have run across this situation before.

Thanks
Chris
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Old 02-27-2013, 03:52 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spiragui View Post
"At my expense?" was more the direction I was heading in. I guess it is more of a legal question than anything, but I thought I'd throw it out here first, as there are a lot of good brains on this forum that may have run across this situation before.

Thanks
Chris
Ayuh,... You've already Bought the house, Right,..??

So what's the Question,..??

Who do you Think is gonna pay for it,..??
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Old 02-27-2013, 04:04 PM   #5
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Dubious deck structure


Is a contractor warranty generally transferable or not?
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Old 02-27-2013, 04:22 PM   #6
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Dubious deck structure


Probably your only recourse other than getting lucky with a contractor warranty, is getting something back from the guy who inspected the house. There should be something in his report about this.
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Old 02-27-2013, 04:29 PM   #7
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Dubious deck structure


Thanks Jeff,

Alas the inspection report has the usual disclaimer blurb at the end of the report, and I don't think I'll have much luck there.

Although - is there a point where the waiver verbiage does not apply anymore due to the number or importance of missed items? Surely any inspector should notice major items like lag bolts missing from ledger boards, beam splices not being centered over posts etc? Do the waivers even cover the inspection company when it is bordering (or maybe not even bordering) on negligence?

Cheers
Chris
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Old 02-27-2013, 05:07 PM   #8
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I believe it's state dependent, but I would check into it. I understand the disclaimers, but certainly you can put pressure on the guy one way or another, even if not legally. Incompetence is incompetence, after all.
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Old 02-27-2013, 05:11 PM   #9
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Dubious deck structure


If you posted a picture of the deck someone could possible suggest a way to fix the deck instead of having to just guess.
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Old 02-27-2013, 09:14 PM   #10
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It must be an American thing to look for someone else to blame. I would just get to it and fix the darn thing.
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Old 02-27-2013, 09:53 PM   #11
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It must be an American thing to look for someone else to blame. I would just get to it and fix the darn thing.
Maybe I've just been here too long then, as I'm English. And my wife is Canadian.

Joe, thanks for chiming in; I always appreciate your pragmatic approach. Once I factor in pulling all the joists off (to add the missing ledger board), removing all the posts (to add the missing post footings), replacing the beam (which has been attached to the end of the existing beam using a joist hanger and not spliced over a post as it should be), plus replacing the stairs (5" gaps between the treads), it would be easier to replace the entire thing instead of trying to salvage and rework the existing structure. Plus we'll need a structural engineers input because we'll be partially attaching a second floor deck to overhanging structure.

Looking more and more like something I'm going to have to live with. It just grates when you end up out of seriously pocket because other people can't do their job properly.

On the plus side, there's going to be an interesting Project Showcase thread in the next few months!

Thanks All.

Last edited by spiragui; 02-27-2013 at 10:09 PM.
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Old 03-01-2013, 03:16 PM   #12
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Dubious deck structure


Not trying to be a total d!ck... But why did you notice now and not when you were looking to buy? In other words, if YOU know enough to question it NOW, why didn't YOU see it when you were looking to purchase the home?

Options include involving the engineer now so he can decide what really needs to be done. I don't know for sure exactly what you mean by some of your information, but you don't NEED a ledger, in other words, what's the difference of attaching the hangers to a board bolted to the rim or attaching the hangers to the rim... Not a lot.. It'a common practice to have a ledger but the world won't end if you don't, a lot of towns may allow it without the ledger (mine used to, I'm not sure if they do anymore, we don't use wood for framing anymore).
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Old 03-01-2013, 03:47 PM   #13
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Dubious deck structure


Robert,

I didn't notice this stuff; a contractor who was providing me with an estimate to resurface the deck did. After having the short-comings pointed out I did my research, so it's all 20-20 hindsight. I wish I knew all the stuff I have learnt over the last few years back when I bought the house!

Cheers
Chris
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Old 03-01-2013, 04:51 PM   #14
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I wish I knew all the stuff I have learnt over the last few years back when I bought the house!
Don't we all. Twenty-eight years ago my wife and I had a log home built in MD. Back then, few builders would do them because many things are different from a stick-built house. We finally found a builder, but in retrospect I thing he got his license from a box of Cracker Jacks. Knowing what we know now, after recently building our current log home almost entirely by ourselves, it's clear the first one was very poorly done. Some things were so bad, he must have bribed the inspector.
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:38 AM   #15
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Dubious deck structure


Could be there wasn't a permit requirement when the addition was put in. There wasn't here several years ago. It could also be that it is perfectly fine the way it is. I live in a house that was built during the depression and there is not a single aspect of its construction that would come close to meeting today's building code. Yet it has been here 80 years. I guess what I am saying is are you really sure it needs to be "fixed"?

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