Why Consult With A Structural Engineer When Building A New Home?


An architect is a professional that designs houses and buildings and no doubt one of the first professionals you call when you want to have a new home built. They will ensure the design and layout is what you want and can add all the features that make a house a home. However, an architect is not the only professional you should consult with when planning on having a new home built; a structural engineer can also be a good choice for you. Note why such an engineer should be called when you are planning on having a home built.

1. Your home may shift and move

In areas where soil is soft or overly moist, such as in the tropics, your home is very likely to move and shift over time. The ground underneath it may be too soft to support the home's weight indefinitely and sinkholes may form under the home. Sandy soil can also shift and move over time.

A structural engineer will know how to compensate for this shifting and moving, and can ensure that a home is built with materials that will withstand these changes in soil conditions. Your home may be built with a steel frame so that it doesn't move and shift as easily, and the foundation may be underpinned so that it is strong enough to withstand changing soil conditions or the pressure of water buildup that is common with overly moist soil.

2. Your home may need special disaster engineering

If you're planning on building a new home in an area prone to disasters, your home may need special disaster engineering. An area prone to floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, brushfires, or earthquakes will require homes to be built to withstand these risks. A structural engineer can suggest changes to a home's design or its building materials so that it can more readily withstand these particular disasters.

3. You may want special features added to your home

An architect may not be able to work in a roof garden when it comes to designing your home, or may not be able to say if your home can support acoustic ceilings or a smoke extractor system. You may also prefer a heat pump to a standard furnace, or other special features that a structural engineer should oversee. For those that are eco-conscious and want environmentally friendly options added, or who may prefer other such special features, a structural engineer should be consulted.


31 March 2015

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