Are you living in a house with foundation problems? Perhaps you are considering buying one. Well, the easy answer is, Yes. Foundations are built to hold up your home for years and years.
Neglected foundation problems can be more concerning but not likely life-threatening. There are certainly degrees of foundation damage you need to be aware of.
Is it Safe to Live in a House with Foundation Problems?
Large cracks, holes, and crumbling foundations may not look great, but the house is usually safe to live in. However, a house with foundation problems will need to be repaired.
Small cracks are normal and happen when a house settles. These shouldn’t be any bigger than 1/16 of an inch. Any larger than that, there can start to be bigger problems.
Larger cracks will allow moisture and insects in. This can lead to bigger issues that you will also have to take care of. Cracks that look like stairs or horizontal cracks need to be inspected.
Cracks and damage can also go deeper than the foundation. There could be issues with the soil below the foundation, which is causing the foundation problems anyhow.
Living in a House With Foundation Problems
If you are living in a house with foundation problems, there are going to likely be other problems as well. If a house is shifting, settling, or tilting, then it affects the rest of the house.
Moisture and Flooding
If your foundation has holes or large cracks, there is a good chance there is moisture seeping into them. This can cause a lot of other problems. This moisture can get into the drywall, the wood, and everywhere else that has a porous material.
Once that happens the substances will deteriorate. Drywall will swell up and break, wood becomes swollen and weakened, and carpets, walls, ceiling, floors, and your belongings get damaged.
Mold and Mildew
Mold and mildew can be dangerous for your family. Once moisture is in the home, mold and mildew will start to grow and spread. These can trigger allergies and asthma attacks.
It gets into your walls, carpets, clothing, storage area, and everywhere. It can be difficult to get rid of and costly to have things cleaned or replaced. The smell may linger for ages.
Depending on how deeply your foundation’s problems go, they can also damage your plumbing. Pipes underneath the basement floor can get twisted, cracked, or broken. These are not easy to access.
Pipes in the walls can also get damaged, causing floods throughout the home. This will ruin everything around them, like floors, ceilings, walls, carpets, and even spread to the exterior.
Your floors can become uneven and even dangerous. There could be sagging or soft areas, gaps where the walls have pulled away from the floor, and gaps under cabinets.
Floor tiles can lift and crack, floorboards can become loosened or broken, and doors and windows may jam or swing wildly. All of these can be uncomfortable and even a bit dangerous, as people can trip or bang their heads on open cabinet doors.
Safety of a House with Foundation Problems
While the house with foundation problems may not be a danger, the results of the damage can be. Living with mold, with falling ceilings and uneven floors, or rotting support beams can be a nightmare.