I'm in the process of buying a house. Yesterday I accompanied the home inspector and he discovered two rather large areas of concern. Here is an excerpt of his report:
Moisture level in floor joists checked at 14 to 17%. This time of year (winter) moisture levels generally check much lower (8 to 10%). There is a significant amount of mold on the joists. Crawl space vents are closed, and apparently have been for several years. There is no plastic on the crawl space earth.
Step footings and 5 steel jack posts have been installed in the crawl space under the kitchen area of the house.
It is suggested that a structural engineer be employed to evaluate the effects of items 1 & 2 on the structural frame of the house, and his (or her) recommendations on corrective actions.
I contacted a local structural engineer for information. Their fee is $350/hr - 1 hour minimum. The seller would like to split the fee. I don't feel this should be my responsibility and want him to pay the total fee. What are your thoughts?