As stated in one of my earlier blogs I have decided to take on the challenge of remodeling and fixer-uppers and what to look for when purchasing an older home. My first subject is going to be foundations. After I have described various foundations, I will explain how to find out what type of foundation different homes have and the benefits and drawbacks of each.
I am going to start with something I have learned first-hand. I live in the Irvington district of Fremont and the tract of homes I live in was built in the late 1950’s and has what is called a ‘Concrete Perimeter & Floating Slab Foundation’. This means that the main part of the house sits on one solid piece of cement that is fully surrounded by a continuous piece of cement that the walls are attached to. The thought, at that time, was that having the walls on a different piece of cement than the floors would allow for some ground movement.
Well, it works! But not the way I would want it to. You see, we decided to have all new carpets put into our house and when the carpet installers pulled up the old carpeting there was a crack about 2” wide and 18” deep running along the outside of the back wall of our house between the floor and the wall. Of course we had to fix it before new carpeting could be laid down because there was no way to attach the carpet to a gap.
What were some the tell-tale signs? Cracks in the interior of the perimeter walls originating at floor level, especially where walls join. Also, go outside and look for any type of cracks at the bottom on the outside exterior walls. To be continued…
Real Estate Terminology:
Capitol Gain – A gain realized on the sale of a capital asset. Real estate is considered a capital asset if it is income property or
property used in a trade or business.