You’re in the final stages of buying your home, and you hit a bump in the road: Your dream house has foundation issues. A moment ago, you imagined your life in your new home, and now you’re asking yourself if you should go through with the sale or walk away.
Buying a house with foundation problems can be daunting, but not all foundation issues need to be deal-breakers. Here’s how to tell if you should buy a house that needs foundation repairs.
A home’s foundation is a vital part of the structure. It provides a level and stable ground for the house to rest on and serves as the load-bearing center of the home. It also provides insulation from fluctuating temperatures and groundwater.
Foundation issues are just that: problems with this essential component of a home, (quite literally) the bedrock on which it is built. Common foundation issues include:
As such an important part of the home, you’ll want to keep an eye out for potential foundation issues. Here are some common signs to look out for:
Identifying foundation problems early is key to ensuring that they don’t become bigger problems down the road. Take the time to regularly scan your home’s interior and exterior for cracks, dampness, and other signs that your foundation may need repairs.
When you’re buying a house, a professional home inspection can reveal any issues with the property, including a bad foundation.
A house with severe foundation problems isn’t just costly to repair: It’s also a safety risk. If left unaddressed, a badly damaged foundation puts the house at risk of collapsing. You may be tempted to walk away with so much on the line.
And if you can’t come to an agreement with the sellers to cover the costs, and the damage is too expensive to fix on your budget, walking away may be your only choice.
If your contract included a home inspection or home appraisal contingency, then you may be able to walk away without losing your earnest money deposit. But if you made a non-contingent offer, you could lose your deposit unless you can prove that the seller was aware of the problems and did not disclose them to you.
Foundation issues may delay officially closing on your new home, but it doesn’t have to end the deal entirely. Follow these simple steps to cover your bases:
When you buy a house with Orchard, you’ll have a local agent with years of experience on your side. Browse listings here.
Foundation repair costs will depend on the type of damage. The average foundation repair comes in at around $5,000, but smaller fixes, like repairing small cracks, costs just $250 to $800. Once you’ve diagnosed the damage, a local contractor should be able to give you an accurate quote.
You've decided to buy a house with foundation issues, and now you have to address them. Here are some tips to help you:
A house with significant foundation issues might be a deal-breaker if you're applying for a government-backed loan, like a Federal Housing Administration (FHA) or Veterans Affairs (VA) loan. These loans have strict structural requirements for homes and specify that a house must have an undamaged exterior, roof, and foundation.
If your home appraisal reveals foundation damage, it will need to be fixed before the loan can be approved. If you’re unable to work out a deal with your lender and the sellers, you might have to walk away.
When you list with Orchard, we’ll get your home show-ready and make repairs to increase your home’s value at no upfront cost.
Orchard guarantees your home will sell, so you can buy your next one worry-free.
We provide peace of mind that your home will sell, plus list your home on the market to maximize your earnings.
Use our home sale calculator to estimate your net proceeds.
Our Home Advisors are experienced local agents who know how to sell for top dollar and help win your dream home.
All Orchard Home Advisors are experienced agents who know your local market inside and out. Request a consult today.
Did you know cash offers are 4x more likely to be chosen by a seller? Let us help you make one on your next home.
Get the most accurate free home valuation — in minutes
Orchard Home Loans shops the market to find your best rates.
A cash offer is 4x more likely to be chosen by a seller. Get qualified today.
Make a cash offer now, and Orchard will sell your old home after you move.
Tell us your must-haves to see personalized home recommendations that meet your criteria.