Why underpinners rarely guarantee more than 2 years
Many homeowners in Australia choose underpinners as a way to keep the foundations and overall structure of their homes stable and strong. But the process of underpinning is lengthy, arduous and extremely expensive. The process costs homeowners upwards of $20,000 to $50,000 on average and makes the home uninhabitable for months on end. Using heavy machinery, massive holes need to be excavated and filled with concrete almost every metre underneath the house. And this is before pins are even constructed under the footing with concrete or steel.
Because of this, we think it odd that many underpinners throughout Australia only guarantee their work for the minimum time required by law – 2 years. This action implies a lack of confidence and an aversion to coming back to fix their work because of high cost when required. Below, we give 3 major reasons why underpinners rarely guarantee their work. And why you might want to think twice when considering underpinning.
Building companies need to invest months to underpin a single home at a time. The investment of time, physical and monetary resources constitutes a massive outlay for that company. The method of underpinning is outdated and highly limiting which is why it is costly and time consuming. Many underpinners know that if they need to return to a home they’ve underpinned, they must charge for their work in order to come out ahead. To guarantee their work for only two years is to create opportunities to charge the homeowner more money and maximize profit on a very expensive process.
Wall and structural cracking is likely to reoccur
If you check the engineer’s reports and building company quotes, they often state that cracks will return and that the house will subside further. All too often, a house needs to sink a bit further before it settles on a pin – which negates the underpinning work done in the first place. And when underpinners come back to fix their work, there’s always a high likelihood they’ll further weaken and damage the structure because they need to go digging under the house again.
The reality is, underpinning jobs aren’t completed to a high level of quality much of the time. Many underpinning jobs require that the building company come back in a few years’ time to make fixes. They’ll only want to come back if the 2-year guarantee has run out.
A lack of confidence
For many building companies, the pay-off for underpinning is short and small. For this reason, underpinning is usually only a small part of the overall building business. There isn’t much of a commitment because most underpinners just aren’t in it for the long run. And because they’re not in it for the long run, the depth of skill, knowledge, wisdom and confidence just isn’t there.
An alternative to underpinners and underpinning
If you were considering underpinning your house but are now worried, we offer cost and time-effective solutions. At Buildfix, we use the latest ground stabilization techniques and technologies to give you peace of mind, save you money and save you time. We often complete our projects within less than a day and charge nowhere near as much as underpinners do. With us, there’s no excavations, no digging, no dismantling, no rebuilding. Many of our clients stay at home while we carry out our work without moving a single brick.
If you’d like more information give us a call on 1300 854 115 or book a FREE inspection today.