Structural survey inspectionsDiagnosing cracking, suspected subsidence etc
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What is a Structural Survey?
A ‘structural survey’ is the old term for what’s now known as a ‘Building Survey‘ – which is a detailed inspection of a property from top to bottom. A ‘structural inspection’ on the other hand assesses specific problems like cracking and leaning.
Structural Engineers specialise in assessing the load-bearing structure of buildings: foundations, walls and roofs. They can carry out a professional inspection of problems with existing buildings, such as cracking, a badly leaning stack or suspected subsidence. They can also provide structural design calculations for any alterations you are considering, as well as helping with Building Regulations plans and applications.
Professional Qualifications of Structural Engineers
A Structural Engineer will normally be a member of the IStructE (Institution of Structural Engineers) or a member of the ICE (Institution of Civil Engineers). Structural Engineers with the letters ‘CEng’ after their names are known as Chartered Engineers. It is wise to commission the services of a Chartered Engineer, although there are some Engineers with considerable experience who are not chartered. Also, some Chartered Building Surveyors specialise in structural inspections.
When might you need a Structural Engineer?
A ‘Specific Structural Inspection’ is appropriate where the problem is confined to one area and you do not require an inspection of the whole building. If you would like an inspection of the whole building then you will require a Building Survey (or a ‘General Structural Inspection’). If you are considering structural changes to an existing building or if you are planning a new building, it will need to comply with the current Building Regulations. A Structural Engineer will be able to help you through the application process.