We are working with a number of clients on post flood restoration projects in Carlisle. Some of these, are going successfully with home owners looking to be back in their homes soon, and others seem to be dragging on with a lack of response from loss adjusters or homeowners to get moving forward. One thing which has come to light has been the large number of extensions and modifications being undertaken on flooded properties. Something we have been involved with since late December during the strip out phase.
We are extending a number of properties, in particular at the back of the homes with single story extensions to allow the enlargement of the kitchen, or creation of dining space within the kitchen area. Having done over 25 now, we have seen a number of issues associated with the houses arising from the historic modifications and poor workmanship.
Some of the issues we have identified areas as follows :
Rotten or modified floor joists to first floor bathroom or bedroom. These are a result of plumbing or electrical modifications over the years resulting in a loss of section to the joist. Result is the potential collapse of the first floor into the kitchen.
Poor restoration from previous floods. Its amazing what you can uncover from the previous restoration work undertaken in the home. Modified timber supports, brickwork infilled with rubbish and shoddy electrical connections. Restoration should be done right and should be compliant to the requirements of the Building Regulations.
Inadequate support from masonry walls. Historic modifications or the poor condition of masonry walls will allow moisture ingress over a long period of time. Combined with the flood, we are seeing mortar and walls in a particular bad condition prior to any modifications being undertaken. With structural alterations being undertaken, care to support existing walls, in particular those with structural defects is important. We are seeing a large number of old walls reconstructed using modern blockwork and mortar to ensure no issues are present long term.
In any modifications to properties, we would always appoint a reputable and trust worthy professionals to support you. Ensure that they have adequate qualifications, experience and insurance to undertake the works and that they do so under a contract / price that you have both agreed.
The drawing presented above has been produced from a design undertaken by Aditus Architecture. We work in collaboration with Aditus on a number of projects and we are grateful for them to allow us to reproduce their drawing.