What I'm Seeing Now

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Do You See What I See?

Do you see what I see?

This is so common it is unbelievable.  Improperly finished work.

The house in the photo is new construction.  It is not a cheap property.

There is an attractive curbside to the house, and an inviting front porch.  All told it is a beautiful home.

The stone on the foundation walls and columns lends an air of older construction to the property.

Stone work, all kinds,  has to be done professionally, with experienced installers, using tried and true techniques, or it will not last. 

The most common reason it does not last is water.  Water invites structural issues behind the stone, along with termites.  The termites are well hidden when they enter behind the stone and begin their damage very quietly.

Looking closely on both sides of the porch you would see something like this.

This is so unbelievably incorrect one has to wonder about the training of the installer.

It is unknown if that metal lath is  self-furred (IT IS NOT SUPPOSED TO BE FLAT) and 2.5 pounds per square yard (code).

It is unknown if the self-furred lath is attached every 6" with galvanized nails or staples (code).  The mesh is supposed to be dimpled to allow the mortar lots of grab-ability, and the ability to provide structural integrity.

It is unknown if the lath was properly covered with mortar.  The lath is supposed to be covered with two or three coats of mortar, depending on the kind of stone, which completely covers the lath (code).

It is unknown if the mortar coats dried long enough.  Those coats need to dry (harden) as many as 10 days before the application of any stone (code).

The decking has been pushed into a convenient gap apparently because it was applied before the stone.

My recommendation:  I don't know if the county/city inspector has seen this or not.  I am not the code enforcer.  I have no juice to cause anything to happen.  All I can do is observe and report.  Stone, faux stone, cultured stone, architectural stone - whatever - all has very specific installation requirements or it will not last.  The subsequent problems to improper installation can be enormous and expensive. 

 

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 16 commentsJay Markanich • September 22 2015 03:01AM

Comments

You're right that the costs from water damage and/or termites is much more expensive. That looks so unprofessional.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) almost 4 years ago

It looks unprofessional because it is Debbie.  And disappointing.  There is so much really great stuff about this house.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

Jay, another reason why it pays to get a home inspection when purchasing new construction. Enjoy your day! 

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) almost 4 years ago

Like I always say, Wayne, one of a bunch of reasons!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

Good morning Jay,

Hopefully it was repaired to prevent the problems it could cause.

Make yourself a great day.

Posted by Raymond E. Camp, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester (Howard Hanna Real Estate Services) almost 4 years ago

I haven't heard Raymond.  We'll see!  It has to be done right.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

Water is a big deal wherever it is...other than coming out of the faucet !

Posted by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce (EXP Realty 414-525-0563) almost 4 years ago

And we filter our kitchen tap water, S&D, to make sure it's not a big deal!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

Good Morning Jay Markanich 

Water water everywhere. This is why people should always have a home inspection by a qualified inspector

Posted by Doug Dawes, Your Personal Realtor® (Keller Williams Realty - Topsfield, MA) almost 4 years ago

As I often say, Doug, water is THE killer of houses.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

Good morning Jay. I love your title and I do see what you see. I think that the code people would be a good idea. 

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) almost 4 years ago

Hopefully they picked up on this Sheila.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

New construction that I have been seeing lately has been rather disappointing.  Is it the builders cutting corners or new construction techniques?  Makes me wonder if I would purchase anything less than 20 years old.

Posted by Stephen Weakley (Nationwide Mortgage Services) almost 4 years ago

Stephen - my biggest beef is the professionalism of the people on site.  My sarcastic phrase is "7-11 Construction."  Around here everyone gets that phrase.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

I cannot tell you how many times I have seen incorrectly installed stone work. You are probably right, the lath is not attached properly and this stuff will end up laying on the deck one day!

Posted by Fred Hernden, CMI, Albuquerque area Master Inspector (Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area) almost 4 years ago

Fred - on one inspection a whole wall of "stone" was pulling away and bulging!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 4 years ago

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