Investing in property with uneven floors

5 Replies

To be safe I would have the house checked by an engineer because it could be a foundation issue. If the house settled 80 years ago and has not moved since you should be OK. Have you done the rolling marble test to see if all the floors are sloping the other way? It could be just a subfloor issue.

Good luck!

I guess my concern would be what is causing the uneven floors. Then next on the list would be how severe are the floors. Would they cause a safety hazard or are only a slight eye sore?

It is not uncommon for the floors in a 100 year house to be slightly uneven. I bet some of the walls are off plumb as well. (Not to freak you out.) But that is just the historic nature of the beast. As long as your rental market has plenty of 100 year old rentals and you do not exceed the market rent (and the sagging floors are not recent), I wouldn't be overly worried. 

@Alexhalimou could you explain the rolling Marbella test?

@Ralphhunter yes my market has lots of 100 year old houses. The city is the biggest city in the state in terms of area and has many houses that are old. I think it falls in line with the area I seek to invest in. 

@Barshay Graves This summer I purchased a home with uneven floors. Its an older single family home with a crawl space, no basement. Before I made my offer I took a look in the crawl space and noticed several of the floor joists were rotten causing the floors to be uneven. My buddy looked at it and gave me a rough idea what it would cost. I figured that into my offer and ended up getting a great deal on the home. I had the work done and everything is level and should last way longer than I'll own the property. 

Have someone take a look at what is causing the uneven floors. If it's something that needs to be repaired figure that into your offer or ask that the seller fix it. The seller may be motivated enough to have the work taken care of and you'll never have to deal with it.

@Barshay Graves I bought a rental with uneven floors.

I crawled underneath and examined things. I was able to identify the problem areas and knew a few cement pads and wedges would take care of the issue. And that was the case.

I'm a civil engineer with lots of bridge construction experience.

So that's my point - get an engineer to crawl it.