It can seem that there are a whole variety of people involved in the home buying and selling process, however, unlike some situations in life, this really isn’t the case of “too many cooks”, instead, every person in the process has an important part to play.

One of those people is a structural engineer. But what is a structural engineer and why might you need one?

What does a structural engineer do?

As the name suggests, a structural engineer is an engineer who specialises in the structure of a building. They tackle a wide variety of tasks, including designing the building structure, planning it out and then overseeing the construction of the building.

They will be responsible for assessing the strength, the safety and the durability of the building and will check over not only the construction process, but also the materials used, such as steel, concrete and wood.

You will often find that a structural engineer will be a consultant and will work with a particular building contractor or architect.

Why might I need a structural engineer?

Wondering which circumstances are going to require the services of a structural engineer? The main thing to remember is that if you are making any changes to the property that could affect its stability then you are going to need to have this expert help. This includes, extensions, loft conversions, solar panels, door modifications, chimney removal and underpinning too.

The first circumstance is a renovation. They will work with the building contractor to ensure that any building work is carried out just as it should. They also can work with you when you require planning permission, or to ensure that you are within the regulations set out for building control.

Another key task that a structural engineer will be able to carry out is a structural property survey. These surveys are designed to inspect the construction of your property, ascertaining whether or not there are any issues with the building such as subsidence or roof problems.

You may also need a structural engineer if you have any disagreements regarding structural issues with the property. You may also need them if you find yourself within a boundary dispute.

You may worry that a structural engineer is just another cost to consider when you are buying, selling or even just owning a property of your own. However, it is important to recognise that these engineers are definitely an investment.

The amount of money that you can expect them to cost will vary depending on the project that you have for them to work out and what will be expected of them during the project. You should always ask the engineer that you appoint to give you a breakdown of the costs that are going to apply to the project, as this will help you prepare for the end bill.

If you have any building work that could mean that the structure of your property may change, then you need to ensure that you find and appoint a structural engineer who can work with you through the entire process.  Contact us on 0161 476 9476 for more information