Thursday, September 15, 2016

Can I Take Down Any Wall When I Renovate?

One of the main reasons that people want to renovate their homes is to create more space. Older homes no matter the size were usually built with many smaller rooms, each room having its own special designation. Today people don't want just designated rooms they want flexible open spaces. To accomplish this you usually require more space, space that usually requires you to remove walls to take two rooms and make them into one.

But is every wall in a house the same? Are they all equal? Well the answer is no.

Depending on the design of the house, the age of the house and the materials that the house is built out of will have a bearing on if you can remove the offending wall and what it will require to remove the wall.

How do you know? You really need a professional to tell you if the wall can be taken down. If you have hired a professional to do your renovation then good for you, they will be able to determine if the wall is structurally important to your home or if its just a basic room divider.

If you are doing the renovation yourself then you need to be careful. You can spend the money and hire a professional like a contractor or an engineer to come in and tell you if its safe to take the wall down or you can start the easy way.

The easy way is that you cut several holes in the ceiling next to were the offending wall is built. Once you have access to the space between the joists then you can tell how the wall is built and if there is posts, blocking or beams that are holding something above you. Also you have to determine if the wall is helping hold up the floor joist.

Even if the wall is holding something up above or supporting the floor joist you can still remove it, but you will need to replace that wall with something. Something like a beam. This is the point were if you are trying to do the renovation yourself you should stop and hire a professional to help you because if you get this wrong you can severally damage the house and or endanger people living in it.

So remember to take your time when contemplating a wall removal, do it slowly and deliberately and if you have any questions don't be afraid to ask someone that knows what they are doing.

Rob Abbott
Village Builders Inc.

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