Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Click on the section that best matches your question.

If you can’t find the answer, email us at info@weinsteinconstruction.com

Do I need a permit for this service?
Yes.  A permit is needed to for soft story services. This is a very complex service and needs to meet all city codes.  We will take care of the entire permit process for you.  However, you are always welcome to get the permits on your own.
How long does it take to repair a Soft Story?
The time it takes to repair a soft story all depends on how much work needs to be done. Each job is unique, as some may take as few as a week to complete, while others may take a little longer, depending upon the scope of the work.  Before we begin the job, we will give you a rough estimate about how long it will take. We know how important your time is and always try to do the best job in as little time as possible.
How much does soft story retrofitting cost?
Each project will vary on a case to case basis, depending upon the scope of work.  For example, a small apartment building with six units and one ordinary steel moment-resisting frame (OMF) and concrete grade beam footing may cost as low as $30,000 to retrofit, while other, larger apartment buildings, may be in the range of several hundred-thousand dollars to complete.  Each project will vary depending upon the structural integrity of the property. The damage that is caused from a soft story collapsing can cost you the entire building. The damage can be so bad that it is not even possible to repair.  This can be completely avoided if you have your soft story repaired. It is a very small price to pay to get your soft story retrofit completed compared to how much it can cost to repair the building damage following an earthquake.. You will be saving money on repairs and saving the lives of the people that live inside.
How do I know if I have a soft story?
Was your apartment built before 1991? Then the answer is most likely YES. Most buildings that were built before 1991 have soft stories. The lower story of a building should have shear wall support. If you have an open parking garage, big windows, or any big spaces on the lower level of your building then you are at risk. If you are not sure if you have a soft story building, we will come to you for a FREE inspection. From there we will be able to tell you 100% if you have a soft story building or not.
How long will it take to level my home?
The average floor leveling job takes 4-6 days to complete. A home can be leveled in as little as 3 days with the self-leveling option.  The time it takes to complete the job, just depends on how much work needs to be done.  We complete every job as quick as we can with the best quality possible.
Do I need a permit to level my home?
Most leveling jobs require a permit, besides self-leveling. You do not need a permit for this job because it is a much more basic job.  We will take care of the permits for all other leveling jobs.  However, you are free to get the permits on your own if you like.  We make sure that every job is done up to city code.
How much does it cost to level my house?
The cost of leveling your home depends on what you need done.  Some jobs do not require much work, while others may need a lot more time and effort.  No matter how much the repair costs, it will ALWAYS be much cheaper than the damage that can occur if it is not repaired.  Unleveled floors can ruin an entire house if they are not properly taken care of.  If your floor is not leveled, your home is not stable. Floor leveling services cost only a fraction of the price it would be to repair the damage once it has occurred. If you have a problem, we have a solution at the right price.
How long will it take to repair my foundation?
In most cases, we can repair your foundation in 3-5 days.  Some jobs may take longer depending on the work that needs to be done. We will let you know how long the job will take before we begin. We know how important your time is. We try to complete every job as fast as possible, without taking away quality.
Do I need a permit?
Yes. You will need a permit for foundation repair. We will take care of everything for you, unless you would like to do it on your own.
How much does Erosion Control Cost?
Erosion Control is something that is so inexpensive compared to the damage that can happen if you do not have the service. Not only does erosion damage your house, but it can damage your entire landscape. You will save money on repair costs and gardening bills as well. It is a very small price to pay for the amount of loss that can occur if it is not done.
Do I need a permit for Drainage services?
Yes. A permit is required for most drainage services.  We will gladly pull all of the permits that you need or you are welcome to get them on your own. All of our work is done according to all the proper city codes.
How long do drainage services take?
The length of time that it takes to install a drainage system, all depends on the size of the job.  Some drainage services can be complete in as little as half a day. Whereas some can take up to a week. Weinstein always makes sure to complete all service jobs as quickly as possible, but will never sacrifice quality in the process. We'll give you an estimate on how long it will take when we come out to your home for a FREE inspection.
How much does drainage service cost?
Drainage services range in price. The price all depends how big of a job is needed.  We have a variety of drainage options at different prices.  You are sure to find the perfect drainage system you need in your price range. No matter what, do not delay on getting a drainage system. Even the top of the line drainage system is only a fraction of what it costs to repair water damage.
Do I need a permit to service my building?
Yes.  A permit is needed to service a commercial property. We always make sure that all the proper permits are pulled before we begin a job. We will be glad to take care of this entire process for you, unless you would like to do it on your own.
How long will it take to service my building?
It varies.  There is no set time that it can take to service a building.  It all depends on the size and the nature of the problem.  We know that when you are running a business or apartment that time is crucial. We make sure to get the job done as quickly as we can, but will never sacrifice quality during the process. When we come out for an inspection, we will give you an estimate about how long the job will take to complete.
How much does it cost?
The cost of Commercial Retrofitting depends on the building and what the problems are. The cost of having your building repaired is MUCH cheaper than the damage that could happen if is not fixed on time. The damages that can happen to a building are VERY expensive and could cost you your entire investment. We have many different options to choose from at different prices. We make sure to always give you best quality at the cheapest prices. We'll work with you to make sure your building is protected with a price you can afford.
How do I know if my building needs repair?
It is not always easy to tell if your building needs repair. If your structure was built before 1991, it is almost certain that you do not have proper earthquake protection. It also depends on what kind of building you have.   No matter what kind of building you have, it is more than likely that many people use it daily.  This means that not only is your investment at risk for the next earthquake, but the lives of everyone that is in it as well.  If there are no obvious problems with your building and you are not sure if it needs to be repaired, give us a call.  We will be happy to come to your building for a FREE inspection.  This way, you will know for sure if there are any problems that need to be fixed.
How much does it cost for a Foundation Repair?
A faulty foundation can cause an enormous amount of damage to your home.  The cost of repairing this damage can be very pricey and in some cases, it may not be possible to repair.  The price of a foundation repair is only a small fraction of what it can cost to fix the damage. When you buy a  foundation repair, you are not just paying to protect your home, but you are protecting the lives of everyone that lives there.  There is no price tag you can put on human life because it is priceless.
How long does it take to get the job done?
Your home will have protection in anywhere from 1-3 days. It all just depends on your home and what you need done.  The job does not take a very long time to complete, but will do so much good for your home.
How do I know if I need Earthquake Retrofitting done?
If you home was built before the 1970s, then you need Earthquake Retrofitting done.  Almost every home that was built before the 1970s was not made with proper earthquake protection.  Even if your home was built after the 1970s, there's a big chance that you need more support.  The next "Big One" can strike anytime.  You want to make sure that your home and family are as safe as they can possibly be when the next earthquake hits.
Do I need a permit for this service?
Yes. You will need a permit for most earthquake retrofitting services.  However, Weinstein will take care of the entire process for you, unless you would like to do it on your own. We make sure all of the right permits are pulled for every job we do.
How do I know if I need Drainage Services done?
Does your home have at least one of the following areas: a basement, a crawl space, a yard, or a hillside?  If so, then your home needs a drainage system.  Water does not need to keep appearing in places that it should not be. We cannot control rain from happening, but we can control the water away from your home.  It is a common mistake for people to ignore water issues because they do not think water can cause many problems.  That mistake can wind up costing you a lot of money. If you are still wondering if you need a drainage system, give us a call.  We will come to your home and identify any drainage problems that you may have for 100% FREE of charge.
Does my Crawl Space need to be repaired?
Crawl space problems are very serious.  They should not be ignored and need to be fixed ASAP. Most people will never go into their crawlspace, which means they cannot see if there are any problems to begin with.  The longer a crawl space issues take to be repaired, the more risk your home is in. If you have been in your crawl space and noticed any water, mold or damp areas, then you need repairs. Water is a crawl space's worst enemy. The mold from a crawl space is very dangerous to everyone's health that lives in the house.  Water can rot the wood that is holding up your home. Your home may be at very serious risk when the next earthquake happens. If you are not sure whether you need any crawl space repairs, do not ignore the problem. One of our inspectors will come to your home and inspect your crawl space for 100% FREE of charge.
Is it expensive to fix my crawl space?
Crawl Space services are very cheap compared to the damage that can be done without them.   When crawl space problems get bad, the cost of repairing them can be very pricey.  In a worst case scenario, the damage can be so bad that it is not even repairable.  The price of crawl space repair is an investment that will never go down.
Do I need a permit for Erosion Control Services?
Yes, most Erosion Control  services do require a permit for work to be done.  There is no need to stress about any of this though.  If permits are needed, we will take care of the entire process for you.  You are welcome to pull the permits yourself if you would like though.  We do everything by the books and make sure the proper permits are taken out for each job.
How long does Erosion Control Take?
Erosion Control can be finished in as little as a half of a day.  Some jobs may require more work and may take up to a week to complete.  It all depends on how much work needs to be done to completely stop the erosion. Some jobs need special materials ordered, which can take some extra time to arrive.  We try to complete all of our jobs as fast as we can, while still giving  you the best quality work.
How do I know if I need Erosion Control?
Is your home built on a slope? If the answer is yes, than it is more than likely you need erosion control.  If you notice any sort of erosion on or around your property, it should be taken care of ASAP.  If you are not sure if you need erosion control for your home, we are more than happy to help you out.  We will come to your home for a 100% FREE inspection, from there we will find out if there is any erosion problems and find the right solution to fix it.
How do I know if I need basement repair?
Most people in Southern California do not use their basement on a daily basis.  This can make it hard to tell if a basement needs repair unless there are some obvious problems.  By the time these problems happen, it may be too late though.  It is highly recommended to go down into your basement and check for any problems that you can see with the naked eye. The number one sign that your basement needs repair is if you see any water where it should not be. If you see any leaky pipes, water coming in from the walls or ceilings, or any water in your basement at all, it should be fixed immediately.   If you see any mildew or mold growing, it is time to have your basement repaired.  If you do not notice any of these problems, it does not mean that there are not other problems that you can not see with the naked eye.  Weinstein Construction can come to your home for a 100% FREE inspection of your basement. They will be able to find any problems and the right solutions to fix them from happening again in the future.
What is Erosion Control?
Erosion is when something gets worn down by the forces of Mother Nature (Water, Wind, Waves, Glaciers).  In Southern California, WATER and WIND are the main causes of erosion.  Erosion Control is used to stop these forces from wearing down your home. Erosion can cause serious damage and needs to be taken care of ASAP.  Erosion is most common in homes that are built on a slope.  It starts to happen because of water that runs down the hill and onto the property. The water collects soil and debris on its way down the slope, which causes problems to anything in the way.  There are various methods to control erosion, but they all of one thing in common... To Protect Your Home.
How long will a Retaining Wall last?
Retaining walls are made to last.  The wall is meant to be a permanent solution for your home.  Unless something extreme happens from Mother Nature, your wall should last as long as you live in your home. Once the wall is built, you should no longer need to worry about it again in the future.
How much does a Retaining Wall cost?
The price of a retaining wall really depends on how much you would like to spend. A basic retaining wall can cost as little as (BLANK).  If you would like to have a certain design and style, the prices will vary.  No matter what kind of retaining wall you choose, your home will have much better protection than it once had.
How does a retaining wall work?
The main purpose of a retaining wall is to help protect homes built on a slope. However, different types of walls use different methods of doing this. A concrete retaining wall is built with solid concrete blocks and steel reinforcement. It is built at a 90 degree angle on a specific place on the slope that will offer the most support. These concrete blocks are able to stop all of the water and other substances from running on to your home. The pressure that builds up from run-off on the slope, causes the soil that is holding up your home, to become very loose and unstable. This will stop all the pressure that your house would normally have to take from these substances. Gabion Retaining Walls act in a very similar way, except that there are little openings in the wall, instead of solid concrete. The spaces in the wall slows down the water flow and allows natural growth. Gabion walls are made up from the rock or material of your choice and held together by metal wires. When the water flows through the gabion wall, it will not break up the soil, but keep it compacted. Other types of retaining walls, such as shotcrete/gunite, act in the same way as a concrete wall, but offer even more stability to your home. One of our inspectors can come out to your home to help explain in further detail how these walls work and which wall is best for your home.
Do I need a retaining wall?
If your home is built on a slope, it is more than likely that you should have a retaining wall.  The pressure build up from water and soil can cause some very serious damage to your home.  Erosion will start to play a huge toll on your property without a retaining wall.  When the "Big One" comes, you want the most protection available.  A retaining wall will give the extra protection need. If you are still not sure if you need a retaining wall, we will come to your home and give you a 100% FREE inspection.
Do I need permits for basement repair or construction?
Different jobs, require different permits.  Depending on the exact service you need, will depend on if a permit is needed.  We always make sure the correct permits are pulled and that everything is done up to code.  We will take care of the whole process for you, unless you wish to do so on your own.  Our goal is to provide you with the best possible service with the least hassle.
Is Basement Repair Expensive?
Basement repairs are more affordable than you may think.  Fixing a faulty basement is much cheaper than the cost of repairing the damages that can happen by not having your basement fixed.  The damages that can be caused from a basement can be very costly.  They can wind up causing damage to your entire home.  We will work with you to figure out the best and most affordable methods available.
Where is the water coming from?
Water can leak into your basement from a variety of places. The water can be coming from places such as: the gutters, downspouts, leaking pipes, or grading around the foundation.  If there is any sort of entrance for water to come into your basement, it will find it.  Not all of the entrances can be closed, but the water can be directed away from the basement.  If you are still not sure where the water is coming from, we can come to your home and figure out the the exact source for you.  Of course, we can do this for 100% FREE of charge.
Is Foundation Repair Expensive?
We offer a variety of effective methods at different price ranges in order to fit every property owner’s needs. You can take a look above at some of our different service types, so that you can properly assess which method may be right for you. Many property owners are quick to make repairs on their own because we do not always realize the severity of the problem and of course we are always looking to save a few bucks. However, foundation repair is not something that you want to take any shortcuts with. The subsequent damage that can occur from not having your foundation repaired in a timely manner can be extremely costly. In some cases, the damage can be so bad your property is irreparable and can cause your entire investment to crumble. Having your foundation repaired is only a small fraction of what the subsequent damage can wind up costing you.
How do I know if my home needs leveling?
Are any of the floors in your house sloping? Do you have cracks in your walls or ceilings? Are you having trouble closing any of the doors or windows? When you walk around the house, do the floors squeak? If you answered yes to any of these questions, it is more than likely that you need leveling done to your home.  Some of these problems may sound very common, but they should not be ignored.  If you are have any further concerns about leveling your home, feel free to give us a call.  We will come out to your home for a FREE inspection and let you know if there are any leveling problems.
Are there permits required for crawl space services?
No. In most cases, it is a simple job and no permits are required.  Certain jobs may need permits. When this happens,  we will take care of the whole process for you.
Can I just seal my crawl space without the waterproofing options?
Of course! Some of our customers opt to just seal their crawl space. Although, we always recommend waterproofing options just to be on the safe side in case you have a pipe leak or something.
Are there different options and prices that I can choose from?
YES. There is a variety of options at different prices to choose from. We can come to your home as soon as the next day for a FREE inspection. From there, we will give you the different choices and prices to choose from. No matter what services you need and what kind of budget you are on, we will have the right solution for you.
Isn’t it expensive to have my home earthquake retrofitted?
It is much more affordable than you may think. Without a doubt, earthquake retrofitting is TREMENDOUSLY more affordable than an earthquake destroying your home. The standard earthquake-retrofitting job costs around a few thousand dollars. However, the damage from a SINGLE earthquake can cost more than 10 times that amount. In some circumstances, the extent of the damage may be so detrimental that the property is not repairable forcing you to either rebuild your home from scratch or purchase a new home. In addition, you will not only be able to sleep better at night, knowing that you and your family are safe, but you might even receive a discount on your homeowner’s insurance premiums too!
What is a retaining wall?
Water from rain and other irrigation runs down the slope causing erosion problems. Plus the dirt and other debris will create a lot of pressure on your home, which puts a toll on the stability. A retaining wall is used to hold back water, dirt, and other substances from going down a slope. Retaining walls can also give your landscape a nice touch up as well.  They can help create more space and appeal to your home.
Does my home’s foundation need to be repaired?
If your home was built before 1970, then the answer is YES.  There are a variety of different signs that your foundation needs repair.  One of the most common signs is if you have cracks in your walls or ceilings. As well as squeaky floors when you are walking around. Cracked concrete floors are another major sign that your foundation is in need of repair. There are other problems that may not be even more serious, but can not be seen as easily. If you have any doubts about the stability of your home, do not wait!   If you are not sure if you need a foundation repair, we will come to you for a FREE inspection.  If there is a problem, we will find it!
How can I tell if I have crawl space under my house?
Crawl Space is just what the name says.  It is a space in the basement that you cannot stand up in, but need to crawl through. Crawl spaces are used to access pipes and other areas below your home that would normally be difficult to control. It is more than likely that you will have no desire to go crawl into this short space.  If you are not able to find this space below your house, you probably do not have a crawl space. However, if you are still not sure, we will gladly come to your home for a FREE inspection and give you a definite answer.
Can I add a basement to my house?
Yes. We can build a brand new basement in your home from scratch.  We will  design the basement so that that it will fit exactly to the specific needs that you request.  Your new basement can be used for anything from storage space to a home theatre.  Don't let the extra space in your home go to waste!
Will my property taxes be increased if I retrofit my home?
Under section 74.5 of the California revenue and taxation code, seismic retrofitting work to an existing building is excluded from tax reassessment. To receive the exclusion, the assessor must be notified at least within 30 days of completion of the work. Contact the Los Angeles County Tax Assessor for details and current information.
How do I get a building permit?
Getting a building permit is nothing that you will need to worry about. First, we will crawl under your home to determine what details your plan will use. We will prepare a plan of your home, and will reference the details you should use. Second, we will take your plan to your city department of building and safety office. If your home does not have any special conditions and all your home needs is a department standard plan, pulling the permit will be pretty simple. If your home does have special conditions, your plan might need to be reviewed by an architect or engineer, who will review the plans and make necessary changes. It is then stamped and approved and sent back to the department of building and safety for final approval to move forward with obtaining the right permit to perform the work. The time-frame will vary depending on each city office and its requirements. Each permit has a permit fee that will cover the costs to review your plan, inspect the work and keep a permanent record of it.
Do I need a building permit?
Yes. The building permit process protects your interests by providing building inspections. We've done work in all cities in the Los Angeles County and we know exactly what we need to start each job and to get the right permits for each specific work that we are going to perform. In addition, knowledgeable and well trained city inspectors will check the quality and quantity of the work. This helps you make sure the job was done right. You will also have a permanent record in the city hall that the work was permitted and inspected.
How much does earthquake retrofitting cost?
Each project will vary on a case to case basis, depending upon the scope of work.  For example, a small apartment building with six units and one ordinary steel moment-resisting frame (OMF) and concrete grade beam footing may cost as low as $30,000 to retrofit, while other, larger apartment buildings, may be in the range of several hundred-thousand dollars to complete.  Each project will vary depending upon the structural integrity of the property. The damage that is caused from a soft story collapsing can cost you the entire building. The damage can be so bad that it is not even possible to repair.  This can be completely avoided if you have your soft story repaired. It is a very small price to pay to get your soft story retrofit completed compared to how much it can cost to repair the building damage following an earthquake.. You will be saving money on repairs and saving the lives of the people that live inside.
What are the benefits of retrofitting my home?
Strengthened homes are safer to live in and easier to sell and insure. The Northridge earthquake showed us that strengthened homes stayed on their foundation in the same neighborhoods where retrofitting had not been performed on certain homes. Some insurance will no longer insure a home unless this work is done. Sellers of a home must also disclose to buyers if their home is unbolted.
Is the inspection free? No hidden charges?
Absolutely. We only request a few minutes of your time to schedule the inspection and meet you on site. If your home is secured and doesn't need retrofitting, we'll tell you. If there are any problems, we can offer you the solutions.
How do I know if I need retrofitting?
Easy. Our trained inspectors will crawl under your home with a camera and a detailed check list. Crawl along with us if you like. You'll receive a detailed report on the condition of your foundation and any water damage that may have occurred which may jeopardize the safety of your home and your family. We won't ever sell you something that you don't need. It all depends on the condition, type of structure, type of construction, the age of the structure and the level of protection you want for your home.
What is retrofitting?
Simply stated, it's a process that ties a home together. It increase the resistance to earthquake damage and decreases the risk of injury. In short, it significantly strengthens the house.