Defects associated with a high-set house conversion to a 2 storey house.

High-set house conversion defects. Courtesty of Peter Weddell, owner/operator of Qld Home Buyers Inspection Service and Queensland Building Inspection Service, QBIS.

Defects with high-set houses

Undulation of the upper level external brick walls indicating footing movement.

Significant movement of the lower external brick walls.

Extensive movement to the upper level internal walls caused by movement.

High-set house rising damp defect

Rising damp from the sub-floor slab, more than likely from lack of a plastic membrane below the slab. Moisture meter readings where much higher than acceptable.

Seepage to the lower sub-floor area where the upper level balcony encroaching upon the area below was starting to cause deterioration of the timber.

  • The prospective purchaser of this house was intending using the lower level (sub-floor area) as a living space for renting.
  • Main reason this house would not be suitable for the buyers intentions is the fact that it is a high-set house (lower level sub-floor non-compliant for use as a living area).
  • This is not a purpose built two storey house (compliant living space at both upper and lower levels).

High-set house conversion defects. Important notes:

  • Water entry will occur at ground level from insufficient height differences between paving and sub-floor slab.
  • Seepage through the brick walls from bricks being porous.
  • Rising damp to the brick walls from lack of damp-course barriers
  • Damp from below the slab from lack of vapor barrier.

These problems may cause health and respiratory problems with inhabitants of the ground floor.

For independent Building Inspections Brisbane in all suburbs, Qld Home Buyers Inspection Service.