A sinking foundation is every homeowner’s dreaded problem, as it can pose serious risks to safety. Fortunately, there are certain signs when it takes place.
Some of the most common signs of sunken foundations include a gradually slanting structure on one side. It can be difficult to determine if your home is indeed leaning on one side, so it’s always better to consult a professional to find out other underlying issues.
Common Signs And Indicators
If you find it hard to decide whether or not your foundation is slanted, you should check fixtures such as doors and windows that don’t fit snugly when being closed. However, you need to rule out any broken hinges or loose screws before jumping into conclusion. Cracks on concrete slabs, in the basement and walls around the house are other tell-tale signs of a sinking foundation.
Those who routinely see water puddles in their basements should also contact a professional to have a look. Another obvious sign involves unstable soil especially after heavy rainfall or flooding during stormy weather.
Cost Of Repairing Sinking Foundations
Once you confirm that your foundation is sinking, it may cost up to $12,000 to fix it depending on the problem. Several factors affect the actual cost, including your location. If you live in Utah, the usual cost of concrete lifting in Salt Lake City could range between $1,800 and $6,500. A professional inspection from a structural engineer may be necessary for homes that are built in unstable soil.
You should solve this problem before tackling a sinking foundation, since the problem may just happen again if you only decide to lift the base of your house. While foundation repairs are expensive, check if your insurance company could reimburse you for your expenses.
Does Your Insurance Cover It?
Your homeowner’s insurance policy may cover the expenses if the problem occurred after an earthquake, or if it became flooded due to a busted pipe. However, you would need to have a specific clause on your policy about earthquakes, since most insurance companies won’t cover damages related to natural causes. Hence, most people forego having earthquake- or flood-specific policies.
An alternative requires you to reinforce your foundation even before it shows signs of sinking, particularly if you live in a place where it can be extremely dry. Drought weakens the soil, and the weight of your house causes the surrounding area to give way.
Stabilizing it may cost at least $4,000 for 12 strips of material. The price may increase depending on the type of materials used by the contractor. A serious shift in the foundational structure may require steel support, which is more expensive.
Any kind of problems with your foundation requires urgent action to protect your home’s safety and value. Always look for licensed and insured contractors since repairs can be labor-intensive and complicated. Make a short list of at least three service providers, and choose the best one based on their familiar with different services at reasonable prices.