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I'm a carpenter and have come across a scary situation. My concern is a house built with 2 additions. The original 2 floor house has a normal poured foundation with basement, the 2 additions are on concrete pillars, for no reason other than cost I'm sure. The original foundation is fractured but stable, one addition connected directly to a full wall off the 1st floor is 3 feet off the ground and stable enough, however, the largest addition is built as a separate house connected by a 16 foot enclosed breezeway to the second floor and is 12 feet off the ground on pillars 4 ft deep. I can best describe the situation by comparing it to a tree house connected to a normal house by an enclosed bridge. When the tree house sways in the wind, it tears at the house. Aside from the swaying, the addition is starting to lean to one side at the farthest end not connected to the house. Question is,, is it proper at all for a building to have this combination of pillars (swaying in the wind) connected to a regular foundation portion of a house. The 2 designs seem to fight each other!! This has actually been done by permit yet seems so wrong. I don't want to be the one correcting the lean but if this isn't a proper design, I don't want to do any work to this addition. Thank you
 

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I'm a carpenter and have come across a scary situation. My concern is a house built with 2 additions. The original 2 floor house has a normal poured foundation with basement, the 2 additions are on concrete pillars, for no reason other than cost I'm sure. The original foundation is fractured but stable, one addition connected directly to a full wall off the 1st floor is 3 feet off the ground and stable enough, however, the largest addition is built as a separate house connected by a 16 foot enclosed breezeway to the second floor and is 12 feet off the ground on pillars 4 ft deep. I can best describe the situation by comparing it to a tree house connected to a normal house by an enclosed bridge. When the tree house sways in the wind, it tears at the house. Aside from the swaying, the addition is starting to lean to one side at the farthest end not connected to the house. Question is,, is it proper at all for a building to have this combination of pillars (swaying in the wind) connected to a regular foundation portion of a house. The 2 designs seem to fight each other!! This has actually been done by permit yet seems so wrong. I don't want to be the one correcting the lean but if this isn't a proper design, I don't want to do any work to this addition. Thank you
Call structural Engineer and have him come out and evaluate the issue... In the mean time if the house or addition is occupied, tell the Homeowners to GTFO and move to a motel until the building gets checked out.
 

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I'm a carpenter and have come across a scary situation. My concern is a house built with 2 additions. The original 2 floor house has a normal poured foundation with basement, the 2 additions are on concrete pillars, for no reason other than cost I'm sure. The original foundation is fractured but stable, one addition connected directly to a full wall off the 1st floor is 3 feet off the ground and stable enough, however, the largest addition is built as a separate house connected by a 16 foot enclosed breezeway to the second floor and is 12 feet off the ground on pillars 4 ft deep. I can best describe the situation by comparing it to a tree house connected to a normal house by an enclosed bridge. When the tree house sways in the wind, it tears at the house. Aside from the swaying, the addition is starting to lean to one side at the farthest end not connected to the house. Question is,, is it proper at all for a building to have this combination of pillars (swaying in the wind) connected to a regular foundation portion of a house. The 2 designs seem to fight each other!! This has actually been done by permit yet seems so wrong. I don't want to be the one correcting the lean but if this isn't a proper design, I don't want to do any work to this addition. Thank you
Just out of curiosity, why, or by what means, have you determined the structure/foundation is stable? A fractured foundation is certainly indicative of something moving, whether or or not it is still moving would be something to look into.

As others have suggested, a competent structural engineer would be well worth the investment, as it seems fairly obvious from reading your description that there may be failure lurking, particularly given a significant enough event (seismic, wind, impact, etc).
 

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Are you stocking me?
I read that person's comment right after it was posted and thought he must know you (or maybe had worked with you), given he was also in California, and was just giving you a hard time.

Very odd just to pop in like that and be so insulting. Usually the insults begin after being here a while.:jester:
 

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I read that person's comment right after it was posted and thought he must know you (or maybe had worked with you), given he was also in California, and was just giving you a hard time.

Very odd just to pop in like that and be so insulting. Usually the insults begin after being here a while.:jester:
Yeah, that old boy was a natural troll. Lasted a half hour :laughing::no:
 
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Yeah, that old boy was a natural troll. Lasted a half hour :laughing::no:
So poor ol' Matthew got 86'ed after only 30 minutes? As Johnny Carson used to say: "Now that's some wild, weird stuff!"

Anyway, in regards to the OP and the homeowners in the potential failing house, I sure hope he/they are able to have someone properly evaluate the issues described. Could be very dangerous, even to the point of fatalities resulting from these types of structural problems. Greg24k was quite correct in suggesting the HO's get into a hotel (or stay with family/friends) until this can be figured out.
 
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