On each of my last three pre-drywall inspections in Northern Virginia, I have wondered -- is this how builders will be attaching front porch roofs now?
I have been astounded.
Contacting an architect friend of mine with photos, I asked if this is how they are teaching architects to draw stuff up in schools today!
These are three different houses, in three different areas, and three different builders.
Porch Number One
These are the two beams supporting the outside of the front porch roof.
There are no nails, bolts, or straps.
The beams are merely resting there -
securely glued in tightly with poly-foam!
Porch Number Two
These are the two beams supporting the long front porch roof on this house.
These beams are the face of the porch you would see from the street. They are about 35' long.
A bit blurry when cropped, but nonetheless, it is obvious that these beams are not attached to anything.
There isn't even foam on this one!
And they aren't completely inserted or resting on the studs below.
Porch Number Three
This is another outside double beam, on yet a third property.
It has two toe nails into the left beam, and a couple from below.
Of course toe nailing won't stop the beams from being pulled out.
What I have seen in the past is a long ledger beam against the house, bolted to the structure of the house. The roof trusses are then strapped to that ledger beam.
In addition, all protruding double beams were lag bolted or through bolted into the house structure.
In a high wind, hurricane or tornado, inadequate attachment would mean that front porch roof, not terribly heavy as compared to nature, could pull out or fly off!
AND ALL OF THESE LOCATIONS WOULD HAVE BEEN CONVENIENTLY COVERED WITH DRYWALL IN A COUPLE OF DAYS.
I do not believe this is how an architect drew this up!
For sure I could teach a class at any architecture school, complete with photos, and a sarcastic, funny lesson plan. The title of the class?
THIS IS WHAT YOU DRAW AND THINK PEOPLE SEE.
THIS IS HOW CONSTRUCTION "PROFESSIONALS" SEE YOUR PLANS.
My recommendation: I don't know about you, but I find this trend to slap things up and nail gun a house together to be dangerous. It is not professional. It will not last.
Builders, supervisors and construction "professionals" are at fault. It is a scary trend.
The house to the left was built by my grandmother near Chevy Chase Circle off Connecticut Avenue in Washington DC. Beginning in 1908 it took two years to build. The family moved in in 1910. It still has the ORIGINAL wood siding!
Think carefully -- do you need a home inspection on new construction?
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560