Major home maintenance vs return on investment

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chessknt
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Joined: Wed Jul 13, 2016 3:15 am

Major home maintenance vs return on investment

Post by chessknt » Wed Oct 11, 2017 7:50 pm

I have a mobile job and can easily move and find work. I plan on moving in the next 4-5 years and bought a home built in 2014 this year. Since my purchase I have notice a few issues that make me suspicious that there has been major settlement or a foundation issue. I recently found some small water intrusion in a small part of the basement after a very heavy rain, probably from a crack in the foundation wall I cant see due to insulation. Basement has been totally dry otherwise, no mold suspicion. Could possibly be poor grading on same side of the house as well.

My question is this: I don't think this will become a major problem for the time frame I will own the house. Would you invest in identifying (and thus being informed of and having to disclose/repair) the source of the basement water intrusion? I might be able to swing a warranty coverage but the company is dicey and I don't want to be stuck with the knowledge but not the means to repair it.

tup45678
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Re: Major home maintenance vs return on investment

Post by tup45678 » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:32 pm

Did any issues come up in the inspection you got before you bought the house?

chessknt
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Re: Major home maintenance vs return on investment

Post by chessknt » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:48 pm

No. I didn't notice the flooring slant until i spent some time in the house or pantry door that doesn't close due to a door frame shift until my daughter started playing with it. Couldn't inspect foundation walls due to insulation.

darkhorse
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Re: Major home maintenance vs return on investment

Post by darkhorse » Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:10 pm

If I were you, i would act on it now
If and when you sell, inspection will reveal it and you will ve to fix it
Plus it will likely get bigger problem with time

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Sandtrap
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Re: Major home maintenance vs return on investment

Post by Sandtrap » Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:43 pm

FIrst look outside at where the water is coming up against the house or draining in that area.
Often simple regrading, or swale, or water redirection, or gutter installation, etc, etc, will take care of the leak without every having to fix the leak. Even if there is a crack, there's no leak if there's no water to get through.
If there are foundation settlement issues, again, look for water settlement and remedy with redirection.

Next step: inspection and diagnosis.
Cut a neat access panel size hole in the drywall some distance above the leak, from center stud to center stud, so 16" wide x 24" height. Make it very neat with a utility blade or a vibrating cordless multi tool if you have one.

Peel back the insulation to look at the foundation wall. Sometimes it may be a pocket in the cement pour or occlusion in the layers as it was poured between lifts. The leak has probably gone on for a long time but slowly and intermittently. It should be obvious by discoloration, etc.

Solutions:
Sometimes the leak can be sealed from the inside with hydraulic cement, most times not. You can excavate on the outside as needed and clean it up and parge the wall to take care of it permanently.

It is in your best interest to optimize the resale value of the home by taking care of this problem. A good home inspector, general contractor, or savy construction wise perspective buyer, will spot this problem and it can be a deal breaker.

Realtors and homeowners would often called my company to diagnose this sort of thing and give estimates. It can have a simple fix or be a big can of worms. I'm glad I'm retired.

Since you are moving in 4-5 years, I would have it fixed correctly, no shortcuts or bandaids, but not spend too much money on it by overdoing it.

j
Last edited by Sandtrap on Thu Oct 12, 2017 1:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
Shared experiences to benefit all -- not an exspurt -- per forum guidelines :) Golf score allocation 50/50 swings vs putts.

chessknt
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Jul 13, 2016 3:15 am

Re: Major home maintenance vs return on investment

Post by chessknt » Wed Oct 11, 2017 10:05 pm

Sandtrap wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:43 pm
FIrst look outside at where the water is coming up against the house or draining in that area.
Often simple regrading, or swale, or water redirection, or gutter installation, etc, etc, will take care of the leak without every having to fix the leak. Even if there is a crack, there's no leak if there's no water to get through.
If there are foundation settlement issues, again, look for water settlement and remedy with redirection.

Next step: inspection and diagnosis.
Cut a neat access panel size hole in the drywall some distance above the leak, from center stud to center stud, so 16" wide x 24" height. Make it very neat with a utility blade or a vibrating cordless multi tool if you have one.

Peel back the insulation to look at the foundation wall. Sometimes it may be a pocket in the cement pour or occlusion in the layers as it was poured between lifts. The leak has probably gone on for a long time but slowly and intermittently. It should be obvious by discoloration, etc.

Solutions:
Sometimes the leak can be sealed from the inside with hydraulic cement, most times not. You can excavate on the outside as needed and clean it up and parge the wall to take care of it permanently.

It is in your best interest to optimize the resale value of the home by taking care of this problem. A good home inspector, general contractor, or savy construction wise perspective buyer, will spot this problem and it can be a deal breaker.

Realtors and homeowners would often call my company to diagnose this sort of thing and give estimates. It can have a simple fix or be a big can of worms.

Since you are moving in 4-5 years, I would have it fixed correctly, no shortcuts or bandaids, but not spend too much money on it by overdoing it.

j
Thank you for your thoughts. While I can probably peel back the insulation (basement is not finished) I have neither the time nor skillset to undertake an appropriate repair if it involves any kind of landscaping which I am guessing it will since there is a neutral to slight negative grade on that side of the home--is a landscaper the right kind of contractor to find? The company that waterproofed the basement has a warranty I may be able to utilize but I am unsure if they will undertake such extensive repairs.

My concern is that this repair could cost 5 figures that I doubt I will recoup at time of sale and since my inspector didnt detect anything it seems probable that they wont in the future either unless this is a new/worsening leak (no water stains in basement).

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Sandtrap
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Re: Major home maintenance vs return on investment

Post by Sandtrap » Wed Oct 11, 2017 10:28 pm

chessknt wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 10:05 pm
Sandtrap wrote:
Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:43 pm
FIrst look outside at where the water is coming up against the house or draining in that area.
Often simple regrading, or swale, or water redirection, or gutter installation, etc, etc, will take care of the leak without every having to fix the leak. Even if there is a crack, there's no leak if there's no water to get through.
If there are foundation settlement issues, again, look for water settlement and remedy with redirection.

Next step: inspection and diagnosis.
Cut a neat access panel size hole in the drywall some distance above the leak, from center stud to center stud, so 16" wide x 24" height. Make it very neat with a utility blade or a vibrating cordless multi tool if you have one.

Peel back the insulation to look at the foundation wall. Sometimes it may be a pocket in the cement pour or occlusion in the layers as it was poured between lifts. The leak has probably gone on for a long time but slowly and intermittently. It should be obvious by discoloration, etc.

Solutions:
Sometimes the leak can be sealed from the inside with hydraulic cement, most times not. You can excavate on the outside as needed and clean it up and parge the wall to take care of it permanently.

It is in your best interest to optimize the resale value of the home by taking care of this problem. A good home inspector, general contractor, or savy construction wise perspective buyer, will spot this problem and it can be a deal breaker.

Realtors and homeowners would often call my company to diagnose this sort of thing and give estimates. It can have a simple fix or be a big can of worms.

Since you are moving in 4-5 years, I would have it fixed correctly, no shortcuts or bandaids, but not spend too much money on it by overdoing it.

j
Thank you for your thoughts. While I can probably peel back the insulation (basement is not finished) I have neither the time nor skillset to undertake an appropriate repair if it involves any kind of landscaping which I am guessing it will since there is a neutral to slight negative grade on that side of the home--is a landscaper the right kind of contractor to find? The company that waterproofed the basement has a warranty I may be able to utilize but I am unsure if they will undertake such extensive repairs.

My concern is that this repair could cost 5 figures that I doubt I will recoup at time of sale and since my inspector didnt detect anything it seems probable that they wont in the future either unless this is a new/worsening leak (no water stains in basement).
A landscaper would do fine. The faster and farther you can get the water away from the house the better. Gutter downspouts should have flex or solid drain pipes underground to direct the water away or hard surface swales, etc. It is a lot easier and cheaper to address a surface water problem than to dig out the soil outside a recessed basement if it is deep. There are a number of youtube videos showing contractors addressing this problem on a variety of home and lot slope configurations.

My home has had this problem and the leak has yet to return once I took care of the surface water. However I did open up the wall in the basement and put in an access panel for future inspection if needed.
Shared experiences to benefit all -- not an exspurt -- per forum guidelines :) Golf score allocation 50/50 swings vs putts.

carolinaman
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Re: Major home maintenance vs return on investment

Post by carolinaman » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:24 am

I would have the waterproofing company assess this problem. It sounds like a warranty issue they should be responsible for. Regardless, you should be able to get an assessment of the problem from them before doing anything else.

Water problems never get better on their own and tend to get much worse and more destructive over time. I strongly encourage you to resolve this problem now.

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