Will your house fall down?

Will your house fall down?


It is important to understand that it is extremely unlikely for expansive soil foundation movement to cause a house to collapse.

Very few houses collapse for any reason. The most common reason for this type of failure is probably fire.

It is conceivable for a house that has extremely severe moisture and termite damage to collapse, especially if it is abandoned.

Houses under construction have been known to collapse when subjected to high winds.  Houses under construction are subject to this risk because key structural elements have not yet been installed.

Of course, extreme weather events such as hurricanes and tornadoes can also cause a house structure to collapse.

I do not know of a single case in which expansive soil movement caused a house structure to collapse.

What seasonal weather-related expansive soil movement can do is cause cosmetic damage to the house in various forms, usually drywall cracking and brick veneer cracking.  Door frames can become distorted so that doors no longer fit properly in their frame; also, doors may not latch and could stick and bind.  It is also possible for foundation movement to cause framing members to pull apart to some degree.  In most cases, the damage is restricted to cosmetic damage that can be repaired using normal decorative repair techniques or minor functional problems such as sticking doors that can be corrected by adjusting or reinstalling the door.

The fear of a house falling down due to expansive soil movement is not based on reality.

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