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Structural engineer/surveyor, I need your help, please.

(12 Posts)
Pinklemon Thu 06-Feb-14 13:32:10

I'm having a building survey done but I'm concerned about possible subsidence. When we first viewed the house back in April, there was a few inches long vertical crack next to the door in the lounge. When we viewed again in October, the front room has been newly wallpapered over the crack and also where the crack once was is now covered with a picture frame. There may even be a few more cracks around the room, but because the room is now wallpapered (was painted before), how can the surveyor check if there are possible movement/subsidence?

JackieBrambles Thu 06-Feb-14 16:39:53

I'm certainly no expert but I think if there is subsidence then there will be cracks outside and they will be very obvious to your surveyor.

Cracks inside a house, particularly an old house are very common and not always a cause for concern.

For what it's worth the property we are selling had subsidence and was underpinned. Apparently the cracks caused by the subsidence were big enough to put your finger in!! The place was underpinned by the insurance company and the cracks repaired.

Anyway, your surveyor should be able to tell if there is any serious/cause for concern movement.

JackieBrambles Thu 06-Feb-14 16:43:59

Sorry just realised you were asking for a surveyors opinion! I am certainly not one! blush

Pinklemon Thu 06-Feb-14 17:48:38

Thanks Jackiebrambles. Your opinions are appreciated.

Pinkje Thu 06-Feb-14 20:47:28

Ooh, that's bad of the vendors, literally papering over the cracks!

Don't have any advice but hope it turns out okay for you if you've set your heart on it.

Madmog Fri 07-Feb-14 10:07:25

We had our house surveyed as there was a crack on the outside wal before we boughtl. When I spoke to the surveyor his first question was where was the house and he confirmed immediately the property was not in an area known for subsidence. Obviously do point out your concerns to the surveyor, so he will know you're particularly concerned and will probably look at things more thoroughly.

Look at the other side of the wall, has that been papered recently as well? If not, how does that look? As already mentioned, cracks inside old houses are uncommon, we have quite a few hairline cracks but no reason to worry about them. The crack we have on our outside wall is not due to subsidence but due to expansion and contraction on a south facing wall - apparently they put gaps in brickwork to allow for this in new houses, but in old houses they didn't. Our surveyor suspected it was old, so they can tell things like that.

Onesleeptillwembley Fri 07-Feb-14 10:19:12

Not professional advice, but they obviously know and are hiding this. What else are they hiding? Maybe not even something relevant to a survey. I'd be very wary of buying from them.

Pinklemon Fri 07-Feb-14 10:41:32

Do you think I should speak to the vendor directly regarding the crack? The building survey is being carried out next Tuesday.

Pinklemon Fri 07-Feb-14 10:43:17

I did ask both the EA and the vendor whether they are aware of any past or present structural/subsidence problems, and both said no.

What do you think?

Onesleeptillwembley Fri 07-Feb-14 10:45:48

The vendor is lying IMO. Who wallpapers when they have a possible buyer? And the picture? I wouldn't even bother paying for a survey, I'd avoid.

Pinklemon Fri 07-Feb-14 10:50:34

That's exactly what I'm thinking regarding the wallpaper.

Onesleeptillwembley Fri 07-Feb-14 11:01:31

There you go, not just one person thinking it then. Even if you bought it'd niggle, I bet.

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