Foundation Stabilization and Repair/crack in floors from east to west
We are currently renting a house and are considering buying it. It is a brick house built in 2005 with a crawl space. We have noticed that there is a crack in the floors from the master bath through to the entry and also lines up with the pantry floor in the kitchen. The bathroom and kitchen floors are tile and the entry is marble. The other floors are hardwood so I can't see anything there. Do you think there is a foundation issue? This is probably unrelated, but it seems the grout and mortar in this house is crumbly in a lot of places. Thank you so much for any light you can shed on our situation!
When you see cracks developing in tile over crawlspace construction there are several possibilities or reasons for the cracking. Could possibly be a lack of sufficient underlayment material to absorb differential movement or floor frame construction. Possibly some settlement of crawl space column supports (or heave of expansive soils). Possibly a lack of proper placement of floor beams beneath any load bearing walls. Possibly,some settlement of adjacent exterior foundations. If there is settlement of exterior foundations one would expect to see some noticeable cracking in the brick veneer and mortar joints.Also a possibility of minor settlement due to normal acceptable tolerances. It is very difficult to diagnose from afar.
If you are considering purchasing the home you should have it inspected by a competent person knowledgeable in the area construction and soils. This could be a structural engineer and/or perhaps a reputable local area foundation repair contractor.
Good luck and hope things work in your favor... Oh... and Happy Holidays!