A question of subsidence

John Conlin / 27 October 2016

Chartered Surveyor John Conlin advises against jumping to conclusions.


A zig zag crack has appeared in the brickwork between the arch over our porch and the window above.

Is this subsidence and will we need underpinning?

How to spot the signs of subsidence


Never jump to conclusions. Too many houses are unnecessarily underpinned and suffer a reduction in value as a result.

No proper diagnosis can be made without detailed professional monitoring over a full cycle of seasons.

Don’t rely on the opinion of an underpinning contractor – that is like asking a fox to count the chickens. Seek a chartered building surveyor or structural engineer.

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The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.