Structural concern about a house I am buying.
February 23, 2010 9:31 AM Subscribe
Structural concern about a house I am buying. Was a load bearing wall removed?
posted by idyllhands to home & garden (10 answers total)
We recently had an offer accepted on a house, and are currently in our 15 day period for inspection. While showing the house, we noticed that some of the work that was done about two years ago is showing signs of having sagged.
There is a wall removed, which I worry may have been a load bearing wall. The owner says that a previous owner to her (she has owned it for ~2 years) removed the central chimney in the house, but only did so on the first floor, which led to some sagging due to the weight of the bricks on the second floor part of the chimney. The rest of the chimney has since been removed.
The reason I am still concerned is that work that she had done AFTER the chimney was out is showing signs that the beam is continuing to sag (ie, tile on the floor above is showing a gap, and the crown molding on the ceiling below is seperating along seams as it flexes)
I would say, judging by the gap in the tile, that the sag is about 1.5 inches over the course of the 2 years since the work was done.
She says that they installed a 2x8 laminate beam to support the span where the wall previously stood, so I am wondering if the beam was just "breaking in" or if this is a serious structural concern.
I am not a carpenter, and have never worked in the industry.
Should I be concerned about this? I don't mind spending a few grand down the road, but don't want my house to collapse or to spend 10 grand...What kind of costs am I looking at here?
My inspector has not seen it yet, so I will update with what he says, and I am having a carpenter friend look at it. Just wanted some preliminary opinions, as this is my first home purchase and I am very nervous.