Australia is home to many beautiful, historic buildings. Most commonly, heritage buildings are residential properties, but there are still many old commercial properties to be found. They can still be seen amongst the modern buildings in major cities and smaller towns, providing a striking visual contrast to the contemporary style surrounding them.
Heritage commercial properties are often sought after for their charm, attractiveness and the often generous room proportions in comparison to modern structures. However, like old homes, these buildings can also require repairs and upkeep to ensure that they're safe to use as business premises.
One of the most common issues with older buildings is subsidence. This occurs when the ground beneath the structure shifts or erodes due to time, weather or seismic movement. If you own or are planning to purchase a commercial building that has subsidence issues, then here are the two steps that you'll need to take to fix the problem.
The first concern when dealing with any structure that is experiencing subsidence is to have it underpinned. Underpinning essentially provides the structure with a new foundation that will prevent it from moving or shifting any further.
The type of underpinning you'll require will depend on the existing foundations, the building's location and proximity to other structures and how significant the existing subsidence is. The only way to know for sure what your options are is to have the building inspected by an experienced commercial underpinning company.
Once the building has been successfully underpinned and made sturdy and safe again, the next step is to repair any structural and aesthetic damage that has been caused. Damage can be caused as the building subsides, but it can also occur when the building is underpinned and shifts back to its original position.
Common problems related to subsidence and underpinning are cracks that appear in brickwork, stone walls and plasterboard. In more extreme cases, timber frames, window panes and plumbing infrastructure may also require reparation. Often, underpinning companies can also complete the after-service repairs that are required.
Underpinning your commercial property may sound like a large and daunting task. However, if you choose an experienced and efficient underpinning company, you'll probably be pleasantly surprised at how quickly and unobtrusively this type of work can be undertaken in the right hands. This means minimal downtime or disruption to your business and the peace of mind that your heritage building will remain standing for many years to come.
For more information on commercial underpinning, contact a damage contractor.