Have you ever walked up or down a ramp to enter into a building? Now imagine that the slope of that ramp is the floors to your home! As crazy as it sounds we see homes that have experienced that much foundation settlement. Most of the time you will be able to notice when your home has experienced over an inch of settlement. Less than that can take special tools and equipment to identify, unless you have one of our other symptoms that is occurring within your home.
The engineering standard for a structure is 1" of settlement over a 20' span. Most people won't feel that amount of settlement over that span. but your house may have other feelings on it. We have seen houses with floors that have settled around 1/2" start to experience sticking or hard to close windows and doors, as well as exterior stucco cracks and interior drywall cracks.
Every house is truly different on how it reacts to foundation settlement. The best thing, besides getting a free foundation inspection, is to monitor what your house is telling you. If you start noticing more cracks appearing or the existing cracks getting wider and longer, it is probably time to contact a foundation repair specialist. They will be able to help you diagnose what is actually going on with your home and if foundation repair is in your home's future.