What I'm Seeing Now

head_left_image

Cut And Paste Deck Repairs

Cut and paste deck repairs.

This homeowner had a weak deck.  Built by him or prior it doesn't matter.  It had many flaws and was damaging the house in addition to sagging and swaying.

The homeowner, now seller, wanted to shore it up!  A little cut here, a little paste there, and viola!

Choosing what appeared to be old logs that had been used for shaping a garden, a frame was made where two posts were nailed to a "beam," and the posts merely resting on top of another piece of log laying on the ground.  No footer that!

You can see the yellow arrows.

Also, the new wood used to "shore up" the deck can be seen at the top of the photo.

In addition to this, what else got my attention was the way the new joists (which were 2x6s spanning about 12') were resting on the new "beam."

Special, special, special!

The height of the post didn't quite make it.

So an attractive shim was added, notched carefully into the bottom of the joist.

What is holding the post and beam into place is the weight of the deck.  They are not attached in any way.

Up on the deck, because the 2x6s span too great a distance, there is a delightful bounce.  Fred Astaire woulda, coulda made great use of that bounce as he, and Ginger Rogers, twirled around to some jumpy dance number.

My recommendation:  sometimes homeowner "repairs" are epic failures.  This deck was no exception.  Inspections are not judgmental - something is right or it is not.  Something is safe or it is not.  And when it is not the home inspector has no choice but to point it out.  This deck was unsafe in many ways, and the way it attached to the house caused rot and interior basement wall moisture.   That is not something any buyer wants to inherit.  

 

 

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 14 commentsJay Markanich • April 23 2016 03:15AM

Comments

Good morning Jay. Not safe and expensive to repair. If the seller won't get it professionally done, time for the buyer to run to a more solid surface! Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) over 2 years ago

Wayne - given the condition of the older material and the damage it is still causing, and the unprofessional nature of the "repairs," this deck should be replaced.  My opinion.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 2 years ago

Hello Jay! Wow, I have to tell you from where I am sitting it looks like it is all resting on a baby gate, LOL. Yes, sometimes those repairs, although very unique and clever, are a total disaster! Entertaining though. 

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 2 years ago

This deck WAS a total disaster, Andrea.  And the bounce was impressive!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 2 years ago

Some homeowner repairs are a bad idea and some could be fatal.  This sounds like someone could be seriously injured when the deck collapses!

Posted by Lise Howe, Assoc. Broker and Attorney Licensed in DC, MD, VA, (Keller Williams Capital Properties) over 2 years ago

Lise - the decking, deck stairs, deck supports, deck attachment, um, well, the deck, were all dangerous.  No like.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 2 years ago

Good morning Jay. I guess you see it all. How very scary and dangerous this is.

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) over 2 years ago

But, Sheila, I had a very nice trampoline experience!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 2 years ago

An attractive shim....lol, indeed!

Posted by Fred Hernden, CMI, Albuquerque area Master Inspector (Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area) over 2 years ago

One of many, very creative, and dead level!

Or not.

You would have fun in my neighborhood, Fred.  I hear it's the "smartest" area in the country, after Silicone Valley. 

Mr. Jay's Neighborhood...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 2 years ago

Jay- you have once again showed just why it is wise to hire a home inspector. 

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) over 2 years ago

If you notice, Kathy, I try to be instructive in all my posts!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 2 years ago

So the owner acknowledges that there was a problem.  Replaced joists with beams not suited for the run, and then couldn't afford more lumber for support?  I that that would be considered a kludge.

Posted by Stephen Weakley (Nationwide Mortgage Services) over 2 years ago

Stephen - I just looked up the definition of kludge and like it!

Kind of like a football team?

Maybe they could rename a certain team "The Kludges."  Nah, Flippers and handy neighbors would be offended.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 2 years ago

This blog does not allow anonymous comments