3 Structural Inspection Answers to Know When Buying Your Colorado Springs Home

Did you know that the Front Range of Colorado has some of the most active soil in the nation?  It’s true!  Our silty clay soil expands and contracts seasonally, which leads many home buyers to ask me for advice about structural and foundation repairs.With my background in the structural evaluation and repair industry, I’m happy to discuss concerns that you might have while you’re shopping for your next home.In fact, here are the three most common questions that people ask while we’re discussing their home buying goals.

  • 1.Should I be concerned about every home that I look at?Won’t everything have a structural problem?

That’s a definite no.Not every home in Colorado Springs has structural issues, in fact, most homes do not.Just because we have active soil does not mean that any home, neighborhood, or subdivision has problems.Most of the time, soil conditions are known about prior to constructing a home, so the builder takes preventative measures to make sure that the foundation and home structure will remain sound.Many homes with structural concerns have been repaired and the owners will have to disclose that repairs were made.

  • 2.How will I know if I’m buying a home that has been repaired?

The Seller’s Property Disclosure is a good place to find out about structural concerns because if a seller is aware that he or she has problems, they must disclose it.They will also disclose about repairs.Prior to checking the Seller’s Property Disclosure, I have found that there are some typical signs that indicate if a home has been repaired or not.For instance, bowing basement walls are typically repaired using wall anchors and you can see those anchor plates on the concrete walls if they have been installed.There are also signs of possible foundation movement that I can point out and discuss during a showing.If we feel these signs are a concern, we can engage a structural repair estimator, or an engineer to determine severity of the problem and possible repair options.

  • 3.Won’t it cost tens of thousands of dollars to fix a foundation or structural problem?

One of the most important things that I learned during my tenure as a structural inspector has been that there are always many repair options available for structural problems and most of the time, they are not nearly as expensive as we assume.If we come across a structural concern during the home buying process, we want to determine our options and I want to make sure that you’ve got a good idea not only of cost, but warranty, budget, and timelines.In many cases, a home buyer can see a positive return on their investment quickly.