Advice - Sagging Ceiling, Bump in the floor

I need advice with regard to a home I'm about to purchase. Everything is perfect with the exception of two things.
1.On the second floor in one of the rooms the ceiling is sagging. A ceiling fan is in the middle of the ceiling. The outer region of the ceiling is fine, but there is a 5' by 5' square in the middle, that seems to be made of a different material(plaster maybe?) and it is sagging a total of 3-5 inches. There is no evidence of water damage(no stains, and the roof was supposedly patched recently). Could the ceiling fan be the cause of this? Is it a structural problem, or just poor workmanship for installing the fan. The home inspector didn't think it was a problem, mostly because there was no evidence of water damage. Will the ceiling cave in soon?
2.On the first floor, there is a bump in the floor of one of the hallways. The floor is carpet over plywood. The bump rides up about 3 inches, and the total surface area is no more than 2' by 3'. Is this a problem? The inspector didn't say it was a big problem, but we didn't have access to the crawl space underneath the house. We will have access during the reinspect though. Is the bump a structural problem or termites or what. Is this a hint that the structure of the building is shot?
Please help. I dont't want to buy a building that requires a lot of repair in the first three years. Does anyone have any idea of what these repairs might cost. Or are they even necessary? I could live with anything under 5k
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Who paid for that inspector, you or the seller? As you've said, the roof was recently patched. The ceiling is sagging, the hall has a lump in it. Is the lump close to being under the slump?
There is a book. "How to Inspect a House" 13 page checklist. I suspect that things aren't as perfect as you think, including the inspector.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I paid for the inspector. The house is in Washington DC, so it's a seller's market.

apartment building, and the slump is in the upper right unit, and the bump is in the lower left unit. Does this make any difference? Can I easily fix the slump with sheet rock? How much will that cost?

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 2 Dec 2004 14:53:54 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@tmail.com (KT) wrote:

Both sound fairly serious. I had a bump in the floor that was easily fixed once I pulled up the rug and opened up a 4x8 floor area of the hardwood. I did this because I was putting new hardwood anyway.
*-------------------------------* NEVER FORGET!!! http://cf1.newsday.infi.net/911/victimsearchframe.cfm?id !05
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

How much do you think It would cost for a repair. 5k, 10k? Wahtr about the ceiling?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 3 Dec 2004 06:13:46 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@tmail.com (KT) wrote:

Can't really guess a price without knowing exactly what is wrong BUT I think it's less than 5K probably.
*-------------------------------* NEVER FORGET!!! http://cf1.newsday.infi.net/911/victimsearchframe.cfm?id !05
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
If the real estate agent recommended the inspector, you need to find a new one. This one is probably blind and was recommended so he won't screw up the sale.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I agree. Something is seriously wrong with an inspector who can't tell you why a huge spot in the ceiling is sagging 3-5 inchs. Did he even go up into the attic, assuming there is one, and look? Knowing that the roof was recently patched is of little comfort, as all you know is there was some problem, not that it was fixed correctly or how much life is left in the roof. I'd get another inspector or pass on the house.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
No, he didn't go into the attic. There was no access to it. He also didn't take a look at the roof. He walked through and said since there were no stains or other evidence of water damage that there wasn't a problem. The listing agent said work was done on the roof in teh past two years, but he hasn't provided me with permits or any receipts saying that. He said he'd talk to the owner about providing that info, but I haven't heard back from him. This is a 4 unit building, and someone is living in the unit with the sagging ceiling. Unfortunately I havent been able to talk to him to ask him anything about the sagging ceiling.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@tmail.com (KT) wrote in message

Any home inspector that did an inspection of a dwelling for the purchaser and didn't go up on the roof isn't worth a damn. Where did you find this guy? Did you check his credentials? Either get a real inspector or just walk on this deal and do it right next time.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 2 Dec 2004 14:53:54 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@tmail.com (KT) wrote:

<snip>

<snip>
I'm afraid I can't help you very much and I doubt any others here can. Need to see the house, see the problelms; know the real estate market there, know the renovations market there ... and on and on.
All that said -- if you have to ask, you may not have the knowledge, skills or contacts to deal with those problems and with the hidden defects (and there probably are some). I remodel homes for a living, and those problems would give me pause -- especially if I only had five grand to play with.
Ken
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@tmail.com (KT) wrote in message

This is not a condition that can be diagnosed over the 'net. This is not a condition that can be diagosed by looking at the surface. Someone with construction experience is going to have to crawl into the attic and into the crawl space and explore each of those conditions. As a registered architect with more than 35 years experience currently working on residential building failures, I would not buy the house without careful examination and an idea of the costs of repair. The conditions might be minor and then again they might not. TB
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Can I use sheet rock to repair the ceiling? Would it be very expensive?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
sure, you could rip the whole ceiling down, and put up new 1/2" drywall, it would not be expensive, a few hundred bucks including paint. It will be messy and a labour intensive job, but you could do it your self. but, if you have water damage above, and its still leaking, you'll have a lot more work than just the ceiling to fix.
if the floor has lumps could be that the foundation has settled poorly and that you will be fighting that problem as long as the house remains standing. Are there cracks in the drywall on the walls, especially above doors?
I'd keep on looking if I were you. there are looootsss of houses out there.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
There were no cracks in the drywall. These were the only anomalies that I saw.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
What is under that floor lump? Is there a wall under it, or not? That makes a big difference of whether this is structural or not.
Sheet rocking a celiing is not all that hard as long as the structure is good. You could have bad wood up there.
Screw the inspectors, get a good carpenter or handyman to look at it. Someone that knows how to use tools. Inspectors only know how to use pens and paper. If you really want this house, it's worth a couple hundred bucks to hire a carpenter to check on things.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
On 3 Dec 2004 11:57:11 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@tmail.com (KT) wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
KT wrote:

Manifestly, you lack the knowledge and problem-solving skills required to involve yourself in this sort of thing. Pass on the house.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.