Finding an engineer to inspect wall cracks

3 best places to look

DEAR BARRY: We have cracks on an interior wall in our basement, and they seem to be getting wider. I’ve tried to find a structural engineer who inspects houses, but the engineers I’ve called deal only in commercial properties. One of them agreed to take a look, but he was unfamiliar with the kind of cracks that we have and was unable to explain their cause. How can I find a structural engineer who can help us sort this out? –Chris

DEAR CHRIS: There are engineers who routinely evaluate structural problems with residential buildings. The challenge is to locate one of them in your area. Three leads that you can pursue are Realtors, home inspectors and architects.

Real estate agents often need the services of a structural engineer to complete the sale of a home when foundation problems are disclosed. Home inspectors often become familiar with the engineers who evaluate the conditions revealed in a home inspection report. And architects routinely rely on engineers to provide specifications for their plans.