Yes, damage in varying degrees can be expected in the life of the building depending on the relevant site classification.
If cracking becomes apparent the site maintenance conditions should be checked as noted below.
Corrective action should be carried out immediately and may include regrading surface drainage, moving gardens and trees or repairing leaks in water supply, stormwater and/or sewer drainage.
KEY POINTS TO CONSIDER WHEN PLANNING LANDSCAPING TO AVOID STRUCTURAL DAMAGE
* Plan type and location of gardens, paths, driveways, lawns, filling and retaining walls.
* Take care in selection of trees and shrubs. Do not over plant next to the house.
* Keep trees with high water demand well away from buildings in reactive clay areas.
* Avoid variable conditions around the house and maintain adequate moisture/watering. Do Not OVER water and avoid the use of unregulated sprinkler systems.
* Locate ponds and water features away from the house.
* Direct surface water away from the house. Do not allow water to be trapped or pond near the house.
* Repair leaking pipes and taps.
* NOTE: These issues should be considered as part of planning and maintaining the home. Aim to provide a consistent moisture regime around the house. This will minimise soil moisture variations that may cause movement and result in structural damage.
(Extract from BSA booklet “A simple ‘How To’ guide to preventing structural damage to your home.”)
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