How can I find out about the footings on a house?

4 Replies

Originally posted by @Eron A. :

i want to know if i can build another story on the house. i guess really the only way is to dig under a part of the footer to check the size...

Not to discourage you but the answer is likely no. I have been in the trades all my life and architects, engineers and builders only go for what you need now in regards to residential construction. The end client doesn't want to hear about your ( the next buyers) issues about building a second floor onto their foundation. All that client cares about is how you can cut the price by 2 dollars or more. How many houses have you seen advertised on the MLS that say " can be made into a 2 story because the last owner paid extra so you have that option"?

Ok, that was the bad news. Now for the good. 

There are many contractors, engineers and architects that will go the extra mile because they want to brand their business and you actually can build a second story on it. But, you need to check with an engineer first. I have been building all my life and can engineer stuff from memory and math as I am self taught from other engineers I have picked the brains of.....for my personal stuff only. Nothing has ever fallen in. YOU need a stamp and a real engineer. You dont want the liability. Even I go to an engineer if it gets out of my scope and my scope is very limited. 

Let us know how it goes and keep us posted. With pics if possible. Best of luck to you. 

@Eron A.

You first need a structural engineer to look at it. Chances are you will have to upgrade the situation to carry the new higher weight and point loads of a second floor. Then you will need to build it as such. It’s just an issue of time and money, but it can be done.

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