Floor Elevation Surveys
Houses in Manitoba are subject to a lot of movement for a multitude of reasons, such as the shrinkage and expansion of the clay soils, hydrostatic pressure, frost heaving, and even poor construction quality. Floor Elevation Surveys help provide a clear picture of exactly how your home has shifted. If repairs are needed, the accurate data from a survey will help save a lot of the time and money that's usually wasted due to guesswork. Below are three common reasons to schedule a Floor Elevation Survey:
1. You've Noticed Movement
2. Neighbouring Infill Construction
3. To Create A Baseline
If you've noticed shifting inside your home, and are eager to remedy the problem, it's best to get a Floor Elevation Survey done first. The survey will give you the accurate information needed to make a sound decision on what kind of repairs you will need to do, and where. We once went to a house to adjust their teleposts, but after doing a survey, it became clear that the house desperately needed underpinning! Conversely, we've been to houses where the owners thought underpinning was necessary, but the surveys showed that the house had settled evenly, meaning underpinning was no longer needed
Infill developments are occurring more and more in Winnipeg, and the excavations for new basements are often dug quite close to the neighbouring houses. Although the builders should be setting up strong shoring walls to protect the soil and the foundations of the neighbouring houses, this practice is often done poorly, if not neglected entirely! Unfortunately, there is no regulation on shoring walls. The city won't do anything about it, and consulting the construction company directly will at best get you better shoring. We recommend that as soon as you notice that a neighbouring house is being prepared for demolition, schedule a Floor Elevation Survey. Later, if you notice movement that appears to be a direct result of the neighbouring construction, and want to take legal action, you will have proof (stamped by an engineer) that the damages were caused by the infill construction.
If you've recently purchased your home, or you've been in your home for some time and haven't noticed any issues, we highly recommend getting a survey done anyway, in order to create a Baseline. Once you do start noticing shifting, having a baseline is quite useful because not only will we know "where" and "by how much" your house has shifted, we will also know "in how much time." For example, 4 inches of movement in 6 months is cause for alarm, while 4 inches in 25 years is considered normal, in which case repairs wouldn't be necessary.