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Do you have foundation damage?

A foundation defect can lead to catastrophic damage to your building or home if it isn't fixed. Leaks in the foundation can cause flooding in lower levels or slow seepage that causes rotting and mold. Cracks in foundations create faulty substructures that could be unsafe during certain events or lead to eventual problems with the building above. A construction defect claim for poor foundation work can help you recover potential losses or ensure a foundation is repaired at no cost to you, but how do you know whether or not your foundation has issues?

First, keep an eye out for visible problems with the foundation. Regularly inspect the visible parts of the foundation, such as concrete bases or basement walls, for cracks, odd sloping, flaking or moisture issues. Water damage or water where it doesn't belong can also be a sign of a defective or damaged foundation.

Next, turn to your floors and ceilings. These parts of the home parallel the foundation, and if they are warped, sagging or sloping in an unexplained or odd way, then it could indicate that your foundation is suffering the same condition. Your walls can also tell you about your foundation -- cracks or slumping in walls can mean the foundation below is damaged or not level.

Finally, the fit around windows and doors can be a clue to foundation status. Improper installation is one reason for doors or windows that don't fit in place, but if these components previously fit and you're now seeing gaps, your foundation might have shifted. If doors and windows never fit from new construction, then you have some type of construction defect, whether or not it's related to your foundation.

Source: PropertyCasualty360, "5 warning signs of building foundation problems," Brandon Cartee, accessed June 24, 2016

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