Alpha Structural, Inc. Media Features

Foundation Inspection & Repair FAQ

Click on a questions below to find out the answers to the most frequently asked questions when it comes to foundation repair and foundation inspections.

Does a General Contractor license give a contractor the ability to do foundation repairs only?

No. Per California State License Board: “a general building contractor shall not take a prime contract for any project involving trades other than framing or carpentry unless the prime contract requires at least two unrelated building trades or crafts other than framing or carpentry, or unless the general building contractor holds the appropriate license classification or subcontracts with an appropriately licensed specialty contractor to perform the work.” Reference »

For real estate inspections, why is there a fee?

The answer is simple. We are not there to just provide a bid. We are there to illuminate any issues concerned with the foundation, structure, site drainage or retaining walls and provide our client with recommendations while answering any and all questions they have.

For real estate inspections, can the fee be credited towards repairs?

The fee being credited towards repairs is at the discretion of our Structural Assessor and is done on a case-by-case basis.

If my inspector already told me what is wrong can you give me a quote over the phone?

Unfortunately no. We need to personally view the property to know that what is being stated as an issue is in fact an issue and that nothing was missed. From there we are able to correctly advise recommendations.

Do you provide a report?

We provide what we call an Observation Letter. This is an itemized letter which states what was observed and any recommendations for these observations. Both observations and recommendations are in clear layman’s terms so that the client can understand what is being said.

How long until I receive my letter?

The Observation Letter will typically be delivered within 24-48 hours.

Are you able to also provide an estimate or costs associated with the repairs?

As we are General Engineering Contractors and Structural Engineers we have the unique ability to not only assess but recommend efficient solutions to any problems. We can also, if requested, advise on potential costs associated with the recommendations based on our decades of experience. If the client would like an actual cost estimate for Alpha to do the work we can provide this.

Will you do an analysis on the soil as well?

We are not a Geotechnical firm and therefore will not be able to do an analysis of the soil. However, if the project requires one, Alpha will coordinate and expedite the entire process. We not only evaluate foundations but also any hillside related issues.

Is it a structural engineer that comes out?

While we are licensed as Structural Engineers and General Engineering Contractors, we do not send out our engineer. The Structural Assessor in Alpha Structural, Inc. is the one that will assess the property and recommend any repairs needed. Here at Alpha the Structural Assessor is senior to our engineering department in that they are the one to assess a property, design the solution and work out the proper budget for that repair. Our Structural Assessors work closely with our Engineering and Construction departments in order to provide the most effective recommendations.

Can I send you the report and you can give me a quote from that?

In the same way we are not able to provide an estimate over the phone, we cannot provide an estimate based on someone else’s recommendations. We have to be sure, for ourselves, that the recommendations are correct for that home and what that homeowner needs and wants.

Do you need access to the home? If so, why?

We will need access to the home to be able to do a thorough assessment. It is important to see what is happening inside. Are there cracks? How do the door and window frames line up? Are the floors sloping? With slab foundations we will need access inside as there is no way to crawl underneath the home.

Will they use tools for their assessment?

The assessment is a visual assessment based on thousands of similar projects. This “assessment” is done without tools or special equipment. Along with this, we will provide an easy-to-understand letter detailing the issues.

Call us today to schedule an inspection or request an estimate

(323) 258-5482

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