Like any structure of significant importance, your home is built upon a foundation that keeps it safe and secure during seismic movement. Without a sound foundation, structures are at serious risk of damage and disrepair. Unfortunately, many homes have been significantly damaged by earthquakes in the past decades, leaving behind damage and devastation that ruined legacies and left families without homes. Additionally, even in earthquake-prone areas homeowner’s insurance doesn’t cover earthquake damage—homeowner’s must purchase separate earthquake insurance. The best “insurance” policy is the quality of the foundation your home sits upon.
Many homeowner’s plead that “ignorance is bliss” when it comes to potential foundational issues with their own homes—it’s scary to imagine our homes resting on uncertainty. However, foundational repair is more affordable than many believe—especially if you choose the right repair company. It begins with a simple foundation inspection performed by professionals. But how can you know if you need a foundation inspection? Here are some of the contributing factors to needing a foundation inspection and what to look for:
Location of the structure
Not all buildings are in grave danger of significant earthquake damage; however, homes and structures in certain parts of California are especially susceptible, particularly in Southern California. A structure that is located in one of these areas is automatically qualified for an inspection; however, homes and buildings that reside in more precarious locations, such as on hillsides or mountainsides, should certainly have their foundations inspected.
Age of the building
Another factor that greatly contributes to the need for a foundation inspection is the age of the building. Older buildings that were built over two decades ago were built under a different set of standards that did not include strict codes and conditions for earthquake protection. If the home or structure in question was built over twenty years ago, you should schedule an appointment for at least a consultation with a professional foundational repair company.
History of earthquake damage
Buildings that have been through earthquakes and survived rarely get out of the traumatic experience completely unscathed. Earthquakes are unpredictable and sporadic, and homes aren’t always built with the potential of a seismic event in mind. If your home or structure has suffered an earthquake, there are signs to look for that your foundation isn’t doing so well. Visible cracks in the exterior of your home, cracks in the walls or ceilings—especially in the ceiling corners—or water damage, are all signs for concern.
Are you buying or selling the building?
Foundational problems in homes on the market are common, especially because homeowners aren’t required to fix foundational issues before they sell (although they are required to divulge known foundational issues before a sale). Whether you’re buying or selling, foundational repair is an important part of the deal. A through inspection is always recommended to first determine how severe the damages are, and then take negotiations into your hands after.
What to look for in a foundation repair business
Not all foundational repair businesses are honest—which ultimately creates a problem for the entire industry. Giving inaccurate quotes and setting high prices for procedures makes homeowners fear the foundational inspection and repair process; therefore, look for a company with an honest track record based on clients’ previous experiences. Furthermore, skill, experience, & knowledge in working with building structures from the ground up is critical. The company you choose should have a strong background in construction, building, and remodeling so they can help you better understand and fix any after-effects of earthquake damages above the foundation as well.
The expert contractors, builders, and inspectors at Troy Builders have helped countless numbers of individuals and families in the areas of Tarzana, Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Glendale, Long Beach and Woodland Hills, CA, secure their homes and legacies with foundational repair. With foundational experience in home construction, we understand how a home is built from the ground up, and we use our expertise to better prepare homes and structures for the many earthquakes that will inevitably come in the future. We have witnessed earthquake devastation first-hand, and it is our mission to help preserve the integrity of our communities through such natural disasters. For more information about our services or to schedule an inspection, contact us directly. We are happy to help give you peace of mind.