Susan asks: I have several cracked deck boards and wondered if they can be repaired or should be replaced. Also, what would be the best finish to help prevent further cracking? The current finish is a solid stain that is worn badly and peeling. The decking is treated wood. Steve Bliss, of BuildingAdvisor.com, responds: Pressure-treated wood decking will not rot, but it … [Read more...] about Refinishing Cracked, Weathered Decking
Gina writes: We recently bought a lot in Point Cook, VIC, Australia. We signed the contract and made a 10% deposit, but the deal has not closed yet. Before we signed the contract, the master plan showed that the lots across the road were individual lots. The salesperson told us that these lots would be used for display homes. But now the five lots cross road are being used … [Read more...] about Is Earnest Money Refundable?
Sandy writes: We were told the lot we were buying had "bad dirt" which didn't compact properly. So the builder is supposedly removing all the bad dirt and replacing it so that a home on a slab foundation can be built. How common is this practice and what can we do to ensure everything was done properly? Also, my husband saw them removing dirt and dumping it on the lot next door … [Read more...] about Building on Poor Soils
Will writes: I have purchased a home on clay-type soil. No soil samples were taken, and my foundation has moved severely -- severely enough to have eighth-inch cracks in every room and the tile has popped loose. I started having these problems within the first 4 months of living in the home. We moved in just 2 weeks after the home was finished from new construction. At one … [Read more...] about Beware Expansive Clay Soils
Ramakant writes: We are in discussion with a builder to buy a lot to build our new home. Currently it's a wooded area. However we discovered that this particular lot had a pond at one time covering almost 50% of the lot. Is it safe to build a new home on this lot? If so what are the things we need to consider? The builder says that we just need to stabilize the foundation … [Read more...] about Building on a Wet Site