My house is sinking

I am considering the purchase of a house built in 1935. House has lots of character, beautiful hardwood floors and fireplace. Here is the catch, 2 previous sales have fallen through because each home inspector has said "it cannot be fixed" The back corner of the house has sunk 8" according to reports. This can be seen inside with a rise in the floor, and on the outside with a diagonal line of bricks that have seperated about a cm. I have photos- I need someone's opinion: can this be saved?
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Crow,
In your local phonebook you will find listings for civil engineering firms. They should be able to answer this question. Try to get a guesstimate for their work. Ask whether the house can be saved and if this is economically feasible. You'll need to figure out why the corner sank, how to fix that problem, and whether the framing has been greatly damaged by this. I think you're crazy, but maybe this house can be saved
Dave M.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

You need to have someone who's done something similar to crawl around the place and give you an opinion as to how much money you're going to have to stack under the foundation in order to fix it up. My guess is it would be a considerable amount.
If you can't find anyone who's done it before, that should tell you something, too.
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Your best bet is to consider another house.
On 22 Feb 2005 16:05:22 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

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Oh, come on... I'm sure those home inspectors were total dolts. The OP is almost certain to get a far better answer for his situation from usenet readers who have never even seen this house... ;-)
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Me thinks I may smell a troll
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And don't forget, before you buy, to ask the home insurance company about premiums for a house that has a sinking problem, and if there are any exclusions.
On Tue, 22 Feb 2005 21:22:31 -0500, "Kyle Boatright"

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Definitely. Buy it immediately. In fact I saw a bunch of houses in California tonight that suffered a bit of storm damage. Was thinking of buying those too. Always wanted a houseboat.

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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

OK. If we look at this thru our alt.home.repair colored glasses then nothing exists that cant be repaired. It may be hopless, it may not be.
I see your situation as a POTENTIAL opportunity. Since you know the seller is in a jam 'cause the last two sales fell thru you are now in the drivers seat. Call in a foundation contractor to quote the job and have the seller finance the fix, or have the seller knock off the cost of the job from his/her price PLUS a few grand for your willingness to finance the problem. If a good contractor can fix it, then his fees can get rolled into the sale and everyone leaves happy, and you paid a few $ less
Mike D
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In alt.home.repair on Wed, 23 Feb 2005 01:54:51 -0500 Mike D

The OP might be interested to know that all the buildings on the north side of the Chicago River just east of where the Merchandise Mart is now were sinking. Their solution was to raise the street a bit and build new entrances to the buildings on the 2nd floor. This was about 1900 and they may have done something to stop the sinking also.
But then again, the buildings were built and someone owned them already and they had to be fixed or torn down. The OP is thinking about buying this problem.
Still I agree with you mike, except for one thing. Don't assume what the contractor says is the price will be the final price. I don't think he will guarantee that. He'll tell you what he is going to do, and that he thinks it will work, and he will probably be honest about that, but that doesn't mean it will work. So you have to ask him what phase two will be and how much that will cost.
It depends on how soft that corner is and how far down the softness goes.
I think the Chicago buildings stayed upright while they sank, didn't tip. Of course Chicago means smelly garlic and Chicago was built on a marsh. The tall buildings are built on basements that are basically also sealed caissons that go down 5 or 10 stories iirc, or maybe more.
Meirman -- If emailing, please let me know whether or not you are posting the same letter. Change domain to erols.com, if necessary.
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wrote:

Sometimes it works. And sometimes it doesn't.
A fellow I used to work for bought one of these problems, had it fixed, and lived in the home for maybe ten years. Then a larger portion of the hill gave away, and he lost the house, and all of their equity. Bad news.
Ten years later, they have a more modest home, three blocks away. On a more solid lot.
The wise man built his house upon a rock...
Patriarch
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Patriarch wrote: ...

And probably not one inclined at 30 degrees w/ an unstable (read mud when it rains) slope above... :)
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Oh, so you've seen the place? ;-)
Patriarch
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If engineers can save the Leaning Tower of Pisa then someone can surely save your puny little structure.
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That is EXACTLY what the professor said to Gilligan, and look how that turned out.
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Well, considering that entire buildings (and large ones) can be picked up and moved, yes, it can be saved. The only question is how much money are you willing to throw at it in order to save it? When I was a child, I recall a neighbor who jacked up his entire house in order to put in a full size basement. The only limiting factor is as I mentioned before...money.

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I assume you are going to have a bank help finance the purchase. They are not likely to approve a loan unless they get a clean bill of health from an inspector.
Charlie

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Not true, at least in my area of the world. I'm in the Atlanta area, and banks could care less about whether a home inspection is done. Here, they are only done to give the buyer peace of mind.
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