Restoration & Refurbishment Question

What would cause our wonky stairs?

We've moved into a 1930s semi recently. The survey picked up that the stairs are out of alignment at the top but there's no sign of recent movement. We'd already noticed this as you can feel the slope to the stairs and towards the back of the house. My question really is what could have caused this? It's on the shared wall of the house and the slope is not noticeable in the room below. We're trying to decide if its worth getting the problem fixed as we're aware it may deter future buyers.

2 Answers

Hi,
Could simply have been put in with the twist in it all thoes years ago??
Or may have slipped over the years and been patched in well but nos put right first.
regards Ashley

Answered 27th Jun 2011

ABACUS DESIGN and BUILDING

Member since 3 Mar 2009

There are a few signs to look for in these cases which will tell you what has caused the twist. When the stairs were fitted, the timber was growing as a tree probably less than a year before the staircase was made, with all the moisture, sap etc making up a good portion of the timber itself. 80+ years on, that moisture has long since gone, causing a natural twist in the stringline (the sides of the staircase). If one stringline shrinks and the other one doesn't, or it shrinks to a lesser degree, it is the connecting bit (ie: the treads) that will show the difference.
If the staircase was installed with a twist, the original fixings etc will reflect this. Any cracks, patching up of old cracks or new fixings might suggest the twist is not original. If the whole thing feels solid, a quirky staircase might add the the character of the house. If theres any wobble or creaking (other than the usual 80 year old staircase creaks!) then it might be worth getting a joiner in to have a look.
Hope this helps, Good Luck!

All The Best

Dave Woolhouse
Apex Builders

Answered 27th Jun 2011

APEX BUILDING CONTRACTORS (NORTHWEST) LTD

Member since 28 Jan 2010

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