Your structural/civil/geotechnical engineer is a lot like a doctor, but for your property. Image courtesy pixabay.com
Sometimes we connect with property owners who ask, “Do we really need an engineer to inspect and provide a solution here?”
Let’s look at it from this perspective: Would you feel comfortable taking very expensive medicine (typically tens of thousands of dollars) without a doctor’s advice and prescription?
Your structural/civil/geotechnical engineer is a lot like a doctor, but for your property. When looking for an engineer, look for one who’s a Licensed Professional Engineer and can stamp your report with a Professional Engineer (P.E.) stamp. You should be sure that your Engineer has affiliations with organizations like the NSPE (National Society Of Professional Engineers) or the NABIE (National Academy Of Building Inspection Engineers). Each state has a license for engineers who are working in those states. Continue reading
Start with a Structural Engineer to evaluate a property before you buy. It could save you money in the long run. Image courtesy pixabay.com
Whether you’re buying a property as an investment opportunity or as a property you plan to use as a home or place of business, there’s always a lot to consider.
Here’s a quick checklist:
- Check comparable property values
- Make sure you look at the crime statistics.
- Check on the quality of the schools in the area. This can tell you a lot about the neighborhood.
- Find out about any HOA dues, taxes and insurance costs.
- Talk to the sellers about their experience with the property.
- Schedule an inspection.
When you schedule the inspection, make sure you contact a specialist to look over each major part of the property. It’s a good idea to hire an electrician to check out the wiring, a plumber to review the pipes, and a structural engineer to look for any structural issues. Continue reading
HOA Maintenance Image Courtesy Pixabay.com
When you live in a Homeowner’s Association (HOA), you get some great perks, such as an HOA maintenance team. Some associations also boast parks and pools, full-service yard care. The maintenance teams usually keep those facilities in great condition. If you’re not familiar with how these associations can afford offer these benefits, they typically collect a monthly fee from all residents within the association. Usually agreement to pay these fees is a prerequisite to purchasing a home within the association’s communities.
HOA’s often include homes or condominiums in their communities. We’ve recently been working with condo-based associations that are having difficulties with keeping up their HOA maintenance programs. Continue reading
Image courtesy Pixabay.com
For those who live on a coastline, the sea can be a beautiful sight to wake up to. But as beautiful as it is, its awesome power can be harsh on manmade structures. Unfortunately, you can’t always see the damage before it is too late. Periodic engineering inspections can prevent many problems.
People have worked tirelessly to keep back the elements of the ocean and improve the safety of homes exposed to it. One of the first lines of defense is the bulkhead, or seawall. The use of seawalls goes back thousands of years. Did you know there were seawalls during the time of Constantine I and Byzantium? Things have come a long way since then.
The DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel at Berkeley.
This week we’ll be covering our latest case study. In early 2011 Helfrich-Associates was asked to examine a hotel in the city of Berkeley and evaluate the structural integrity of a portion of the hotel.
The DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel at Berkeley Marina is located less than 5 miles from Emeryville and only 20 minutes from Oakland International Airport. The hotel is situated on Berkeley Marina.
The hotel, built in the 1970s, had a building that was suffering from titling due to uneven soil conditions. The building in question, number three (3), was built on a 12-inch thick, reinforced mat foundation that was not sufficient to deal with the settling of soft soils. As a result the building had tilted more than 20 inches. Continue reading
Image of a property at sunset courtesy of Pixabay.com
If you’ve ever been involved with real estate transactions such as purchasing a property, then you’ve had to engage the services of a realtor or a financial institution. It’s a necessary part of the American dream, as well as the dream of many people across the globe.
Before any property can be purchased it must be put through a complicated series of real estate, legal, and financial reviews. This includes property inspections and disclosure statements. During these procedures, there are many things to look at. Unfortunately, sometimes issues are either missed or concealed in the rush to clear a property for purchase.