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Question
Hello,
We bought a 50 year old split ranch about a year back north of Boston.  Had a bad inspection.

The floors on upper level are sagged and squeaky at some points. This also caused the bathroom tile floor to crack.

Some cracks on walls and ceiling which I taped. Some doors, particularly those on the main beam of house, are a bit sticky.
Window frames has tiny pin holes but no wood powder or anything like that.

Lower level looks much better with no sagging/cracks etc.

Lower Level/Basement is finished except for a small area which houses the water meter and water main.  That  area looks good .

I am concerned that there might be termite damages   and/or other wood damage in the framing.

Planning to call a structural engineer and a termite inspection.    

Question:

1)   Do I rip open the lower level ceiling before calling structural inspector ?  

2) I can open one of the walls (in a closet) whcih is directly behind the shower .  Will that give any insight ?
    
3) Can you suggest any checks that I can do to find if there are major problems.  I am somewhat handy.

Answer
I would wait on what the structural engineer says and be available to either allow them to open things up or to be there to open things up for them.  Having a bug guy there at the same time would be a huge plus as well.  The two together should be able to sort things out and perhaps the bug guy would not be necessary at all. Squeaking floors in a 50 year old house is pretty normal and even some amount of cracking in tiles might also be normal for a house that age. Hope this helps.
Charlie

Home Inspection

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Charles Buell

Expertise

I can answer most questions about homes and home inspections, especially as related to the NE and NW regions of the country. I can answer many questions related to plumbing, electrical, roofing, structural, HVAC, insulation & ventilation (especially as applicable to energy efficient homes) and wood destroying organisms. Licensed Structural Pest Inspector #67488 Licensed Home Inspector #220

Experience

I had been a design/build general contractor for over 33 yrs prior to my current 5 yrs as a home inspector. I also teach the Electrical, Plumbing, and Insulation/Ventilation portions of the Residential Home Inspection Course at Bellingham Technical College, Bellingham, Washington. As a builder, I specialized in Super Insulated, Energy Efficient Homes. I specialized in Pressure Treated Wood Foundations.

Organizations
ASHI---American Society of Home Inspectors.

Publications
ActiveRain Real Estate Network

Education/Credentials
BA from SUNY Oswego, Oswego, NY

Awards and Honors
1979 NY State ERDA Award---$10,000 (Design of an energy efficient home)

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