We bought a house on a lake in central New York nearly 4 years ago. The house began as a tiny fishing cabin (circa 1930-40's)but was added onto once or twice (circa 1970-80's)prior to our ownership. The house is a single story 40'x42' "box" over varying crawl space elevations. There are no plans, permits, or records at the town hall regarding the original building or it's additions over the years.
The side of the house facing the lake is on a slop that is eroding away. The foundation is of mixed structures (wood on ground, wood on pier, wood on concrete block pier, etc.) We are also experiencing some interior cracking in a corner of the living room wall over the problematic foundation area.
We contacted a local Structural Engineer in April but he has still not gotten back to us with a plan. He seemed uncomfortable with the project and what to do. He wanted to start with exploratory drilling down to discover bedrock and get a topographical survey. (cost about $3000-5000)
Two years ago we got an estimate for a full basement & foundation for ($138,000) from a general contractor who specializes in similar lake houses in the region. It was an ideal "fix" but we could not afford it nor was it worth investing that amount in the house.
We are retired and with limited income. We can not spend more than we can afford but want to repair/replace the foundation before we sell the property to the next owner, probably within the next 5-10 years. In addition, our investment(bought high $ in 2008) has also declined in the RE market and we do not want to put too much money into this project.
Please suggest our next step. Who else could deal with this other than another Structural Engineer. An architect I contacted pointed us to structural engineers.
Many thanks for your input