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Observation: The foundation is out of square.

Performance Standard: As measured at the top of the foundation wall, the diagonal of a triangle with sides of 12 feet and 16 feet shall be no more than 1/2 inch more or less than 20 feet, unless the owner and remodeler agree to intentionally build an addition to an existing structure out of square in order to match or compensate for inaccuracies in the existing structure.

Corrective Measure: The remodeler will make necessary modifications to any foundation not complying with the performance standards for squareness to provide a satisfactory appearance.

Discussion: Squareness is primarily an aesthetic consideration. Regularly repeated geometric patterns in floor and ceiling coverings show a gradually increasing or decreasing pattern along an out-of-square wall. The standard tolerance of plus or minus 1/2 inch in the diagonal allows a maximum increasing or decreasing portion of about 3/8 inch in a 12-foot wall of a 12xl6-foot room. However, a remodeler and client may agree to build an addition out of square in order to keep a new exterior wall on line with an existing wall of an out-of-square house.

The corrective measure emphasizes the primarily aesthetic nature of squareness and makes the criteria for correction “a satisfactory appearance.” This criteria allows the remodeler to make either a structural change, if the defect is discovered in time, or some cosmetic change to hide the defect, if the construction is in the finishing stages when the defect is discovered.