FAQ’s – GENERAL QUESTIONS. Got some questions? The following are frequently asked questions we get asked about. Of course if you can’t find the answer here, please feel free to pick up the phone and talk to us directly. 

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Civil Engineering Services image
Civil Engineering Services image
Structural engineers help in the design process in buildings and structures, designing them to withstand stresses and pressures such as weather and human use. They work in close partnership with architects and builders and when construction has begun, structural engineers are often involved in inspecting the work and advising contractors.

Structural engineers also examine existing buildings and other structures to test if they are structurally sound and still fit for purpose, in particular if the building has suffered from subsidence, fire or flooding. Structural engineers have to make efficient use of funds and materials in order to achieve structural goals.

What is the difference between an architect and a structural engineer?
Architects and structural engineers work in close partnership when they design buildings or design building alterations and extensions, but there are differences between them.

An architect designs the building to the client’s brief, creating a plan that will be based on for construction taking into account aesthetics, the building layout, door and windows, and the utilities of the electrics and the plumbing.

Structural engineers work from the architect’s drawings and make sure the building works, by advising the use of various structural techniques. These very from types of load bearing walls, foundations and steel or timber beams for example.

It is a visual inspection carried out by a structural engineer to determine whether the building or structure is suffering from any structural problems and if so what are the causes and remedial options. If the building or structure has a defect that requires further investigation, the structural engineer would advise on the nature of the exploratory work. For example, trial holes to reveal the existing foundation, in order to determine the most effective structural solution.
It is advised to have a structural inspection when looking into buying a property. This can be done privately and can help reassure you that the property is in good condition or will require work to rectify problems if bought. Alternatively, the mortgage provider will ask for a structural survey if any problems of a structural nature have been identified by the Valuation report or the Homebuyer reports and an opinion form a qualified structural engineer is required.
If you already own the property it is advised to have a structural survey if you are planning an extension or making any other alterations the building or structure.
If you find any cracks that you are concerned about, a structural surveyor should be advised who will make an inspection.
We can inspect the building work, which may require intrusive investigation, to establish if the building work is safe and meets good building practice and regulations. We are able to report on our findings which will assist in regularising a retrospective submission.