What you need a structural engineer for

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Do you need a structural engineer? To help you decide if a structural engineer is required for your project, look at our guide to learn more about what a structural engineer does and what jobs you might need them for.What does a structural engineer do?Firstly, it’s important to understand what structural engineering entails. Essentially, a structural engineer is responsible for designing and ensuring the safety of structures that support or resist loads. This includes buildings, bridges, and even roller coasters. They use their knowledge of physics, mathematics, and materials science to calculate the strength and stability of structures and ensure they meet safety standards. What’s the difference between a structural engineer and an architect?While architects and builders focus on the overall design and construction of a building, there are many differences between the two professions. Architects focus on designing the overall aesthetic and functional aspects of a building; structural engineers are responsible for ensuring its safety and stability. Structural engineers work closely with architects to ensure their designs are structurally sound and withstand various environmental factors, such as high winds. When do you need a structural engineer? Structural engineers play a big part in building and renovation processes, including:Structural surveyWhen buying property, you can hire a structural engineer to survey the property’s condition. They will check for cracking, subsidence, water damage or sagging roofing. Once they’ve assessed the property, they will go away and produce a report, which is usually provided between 7 and 10 days. Structural changesAnytime you’re making changes to the structure of a building, a structural engineer should be consulted. This includes adding or removing walls, changing the layout of rooms, or adding an extension. A structural engineer can assess the existing structure and determine the feasibility of the proposed changes. Structural damage Another situation where a structural engineer is necessary is when dealing with structural damage or issues. This can include cracks in walls or foundations, sagging floors or roofs, or signs of water damage. A structural engineer can assess the damage, determine the cause, and suggest solutions for repairing or reinforcing the structure. In some cases, a structural engineer may also be called upon to assess the safety of a building after a natural disaster, such as an earthquake or hurricane. New constructionStructural engineers are also important in the construction of new buildings. They work closely with architects and builders to ensure that the design of the building is structurally sound and meets all safety standards. This includes determining the size and placement of load-bearing walls, choosing appropriate materials, and calculating the foundation’s strength. With the expertise of a structural engineer, a building may be safe and meet building codes. How much does it cost to hire a structural engineer?Structural engineer fees vary depending on numerous factors, including the type of job, location, the property’s condition and the report’s duration. However, on average, you should expect to pay around £50 to £90 per hour, while a structural survey typically costs £500 to £1500. Before hiring a structural engineer, get multiple quotes from various professionals. You should also check they have the right qualifications, and you can also check reviews to ensure you are choosing a structural engineer you can rely on.