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Is it common to have saggy floors in a Victorian house?

(11 Posts)
toja555 Tue 29-Sep-09 15:48:35

I am in a process in a minor refurbishment of my new Victorian house before we can move in. The more I work on it, the more everything seems unlevel and saggy, including badly shaped walls and saggy floors. This was not visible (or was not visible that much) when we viewed the house. I was told by someone “what do you expect from old Victorian house?” and that most of the old houses are like this. I don’t have a chance to check whether I am a rule or exception. I never lived in an old house before…

wasabipeanut Tue 29-Sep-09 15:51:28

We had a buildng survery done on the victorian house we are buying and were told some of the floors had a slight bow and "springiness" which is considered normal.

Major sagging isn't.

What do you define as saggy?

EldonAve Tue 29-Sep-09 16:00:12

is it saggy or just wonky?
our house slopes towards the chimney breasts but the whole street does the same

toja555 Tue 29-Sep-09 16:02:09

Our building survey brought up past movement which is not progressive and it did mentioned that some of floors are out of level but this can be accepted. We got a standard building insurance, so I assumed this is not an issue. We were assured that this quite common with old houses. When all furniture was removed, we saw that skirting boards are not straight (slightly waved) and the floor is somehow wavy. Not that much, but I found it quite visible.

GrapefruitMoon Tue 29-Sep-09 16:06:06

Ime, you won't get straight/level anything with an old house (all part of the charm!) - especially if it has been subject to DIY by past owners. I don't really notice but dh claims the floor in one of our bedrooms slopes noticeably...

expatinscotland Tue 29-Sep-09 16:07:40

that's because the vast majority of old houses are shitty shite.

it's common for them to be utter money pits and freezing cold and in general, dumps.

we're living in one for another week and a half and i can't wait to see the back of it.

wilbur Tue 29-Sep-09 16:08:20

We have a Victorian house and have a number of saggy/springy floor areas. We have done building work and have had everything looked at by a surveyor and it's all fine, just saggy. They did say that Victorian floor joists are a lot narrower than modern ones - ie a house built today will not sag in the same way in 100 years - but as long as there is no rot, and you don't install a concrete bathtub, they are fine. I do find that all our furniture leans into the centre of the room when it placed against a wall, but we just live with a lot of propped up bookcase legs etc. It sounds to me like your house is fairly normal for a Victorian home - most of them will have had some movement over the years.

toja555 Tue 29-Sep-09 16:08:38

EldonAve, if I could say that all the street houses have similar issues, I would raise no question. Bathroom floor quite visibly slopes to one side. One bedroom is wonky or wavy. Master bedroom looks quite ok (does not look very even but I can’t even determine if it is level, so probably it is not too bad). Downstairs hall and living room are fine, kitchen/dining room is wavy.

toja555 Tue 29-Sep-09 16:15:03

Wilbur, I was searching for information about it on the net and found a thumb rule about saggy floor: If peas do not roll out from your plate, then your floor is fine”. I am completely unused to that, and I feel weird. I wonder if I will ever get used to it. I love the charming look of Victorian houses from outside, but I prefer modern style inside, and this does not include “charming” saggy floors! Well.. have to live with it for a while and hope that I will find a buyer in the future which will like my “charming” saggy floor

wilbur Tue 29-Sep-09 16:30:15

I don't mind the saggy floors myself, but my "charming" draughty windows are a pain! I long to have the money to buy new double-glazed sashes, but they are £££. One day, maybe.

toja555 Tue 29-Sep-09 16:39:14

Wilbur, a lot of glazing companies offer windows on credit with quite low APR. And in the end of the day, it is more heating-efficient, so you don’t lose out. (I don’t work in a glazing company).

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