I am considering to put an offer on a home - during pre-inspection, they found a creck and exposed piece of rebar near stem wall - shall I worry?

Asked by homebuyer, 95054 Tue Jun 25, 2013

they have spent $2k to fix it but since this is a $1M property I am looking for 2nd opinion

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John Arendsen’s answer
John Arendsen, Agent, Leucadia, CA
Tue Jul 30, 2013
Great big huge red flag. If you really like the property I'd go the distance and hire a structural engineer to do a thorough scope on the entire foundation. Once you have transelated his findings and opinions to cost you'll have a better handle on whether or not to move forward. Good luck.

We're foundation specialists and have been in business for almost 30 years. Don't let any RE professional allow you to gloss this over. It could be a very serious problem and in many instances a deal breaker.

http://www.onthelevelcontractors.com
0 votes
Betty, Agent, Saratoga, CA
Sun Jul 14, 2013
What the hell is a creck? Please elaborate so we can help you.
1 vote
Betty, Agent, Saratoga, CA
Sun Jul 14, 2013
Having an exposed crack is never a good idea, and it really turns people off. Plumbers are the worse offenders.
0 votes
Betty, Agent, Saratoga, CA
Sun Jul 14, 2013
It's never a good idea to have an exposed crack. That applies to a lot of things.
0 votes
Thomas McEvoy, Agent, Cupertino, CA
Sat Jun 29, 2013
Not sure what you mean by "pre-inspection" but assuming that was a home or property inspector,keep in mind that they are generalists and not specialists so they refer you to the specialists (e.g., pest control, structural engineers). You didn't copy or describe the crack -- is it vertical, horizontal, the length, width, etc. If there was work done previously, ask for the documents of the prior inspection as well as invoices and information related to what was done and by whom. You may have an opportunity to speak with the previous inspector and the person responsible for the $2K work.

$2,000 of work related to a foundation in a $1,000,000+ home does not seem that significant BUT you may hire a structural engineer to assess the situation. Usually they are about $400-500 for the written report. That should help ascertain if there are lingering issues and any other items that may need attention. Hopefully, you have experienced representation to take you through the process and provide a referral to a experienced structural engineer.
0 votes
homebuyer, Home Buyer, 95054
Wed Jun 26, 2013
Thank you everyone for quick and insightful replies - Fred, Ronald, Nina - your suggestions were very useful - I did talk to the contractor as well as the inspector and they both explained to my satisfaction on what the issue was and what has been done to fix it. I also got copy of the work invoice, photos of completed work (before/After) and inspector's node that things were done properly.

Thank you again for great advice!
0 votes
Fred Herman, Agent, Staten Island, NY
Tue Jun 25, 2013
the stem wall is the vertical wall that sits on the footing. you state, ..."near the stem wall..."

so where exactly was the crack???

i'm not sure what I call a pre-inspection is what you mean by a pre-inspection.

for me a pre-inspection is an inspection at the request of the home owner, just prior to marketing the home. prospective buyers are given access to the report. in the best case the home inspections finds the property free from defects/problems. this can enhance a prospective buyer's confidence in the property.

when the inspection finds problems, the home owner can choose to fix them or factor them in to the listing price. Prospective buyers can be show the receipts for the items repaired, or prospective buyers are told because of problem "x", and 'y" the home owner factored in the cost of repair by lowering his/her asking price.
I think the most important thing is that the home owner knows of any problems before the buyer's inspector finds them.

re: the crack -- who determined what fix was needed??? who performed the fix???

if it was not fixed, I would have suggested you hire an engineer, but now that it's "fixed" (hopefully fixed correctly) the defective condition is no longer visible.

good luck
0 votes
Roland Barcos, Agent, San Jose, CA
Tue Jun 25, 2013
Worrying won't help, but you are right to be concerned. Was the fix done after the first inspection and was a follow-up inspection done?
Start with the person that made the repair and ask if the there is a warranty on the repair.
Then talk with the inspecrtor that wrote the report and ask if they re-inspected and get their opinion. If they recommend "further inspection by a qualified professional", then consult a structural engineer or foundation contractor.

Good luck,
Roland Barcos
0 votes
Nina Daruwal…, Agent, Cupertino, CA
Tue Jun 25, 2013
If you are spending $1M, then you should definatly get your own Inspections done - Roof to foundation....what does your Realtor say??
If they say they have "fixed" something, do you have work completion paperwork for that?
This is very little info, let your Realtor guide you, share your concerns.......if you dont have a Realtor, feel free to get i touch with me. Wishing you the Best,
Nina
Web Reference:  http://www.ninadaruwalla.com
0 votes
Ron Thomas, Agent, Fresno, CA
Tue Jun 25, 2013
I never heard of a Pre-Inspection either.
But then, I never heard of a "Stem Wall".
I'm not worried.
0 votes
Tim Moore, Agent, Kitty Hawk, NC
Tue Jun 25, 2013
What is a pre-inspection? The inspection before the inspection? Without seeing what you are talking about I would be concerned enough to get the opinion of a contractor or building inspector and not us here.
0 votes
John Souerbry, Agent, Fairfield, CA
Tue Jun 25, 2013
I agree with Lydia. What you saw will probably be observed and noted in the appraisal report and you will need the opinion of a qualified specialist as to whether or not further work is needed.
0 votes
Lydia Wang, Agent, Cupertino, CA
Tue Jun 25, 2013
Hard to tell, which property? to be cautious, you can check with foundation professional.
0 votes
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