Construction Defects, What Are They?

A construction defect is any condition in your home that devalues its worth. In a lot of cases, these faults are often less obvious and only become evident years after building the house.

Causes Of Construction Defects

Many factors can cause construction defects to arise. Some of these factors include;
  • Lack of proper soil analysis and preparation
  • Planning and selection of the wrong site
  • The structural and civil engineering involved
  • Careless construction
  • Use of substandard building materials

Common Types Of Construction Defects

Below is a list of the most common ways defects can occur;
  • Heating and electrical problems
  • Structural disaster
  • Dry rot
  • Defective drainage
  • Poor soil and landscaping
  • Electrical problems
  • Water seepage
  • Crack found in foundation, wall, and roof

How Can You Prove A Construction Defect In Court?

It depends on the kind of defect. There are patent and latent defects. Patent defects are defects that are obvious and easily seen, while the unseen ones are called latent. To make a fruitful construction defect as a litigation claim, you must depend on the testimony of the experts specialized in the specific part of the construction. The regular job is to investigate the defect, calculate the cause, and advise on fixing the defect.

What Kind Of Damages Can Be Recovered?

It is dependent on the facts and circumstances of your case. Generally speaking, the cost of repairs and the decline in the value of your home may be recovered. Additionally, other recoverable damages might include the cost of temporary housing, the loss of the use of the property during the repair, court costs, and in some instances, the attorney’s fees if stated in the contract. Furthermore, any personal injuries resulting from the defect may also be recovered. Punitive damages may be assessed against the defendant if the court finds their behavior to be reckless and intentional.

Who Will Pay For The Damages?

When the defendant notices the defect, the defendant’s insurance company that was in effect bears the responsibility of paying for the damages.

Are There Any Time Limits On Filing A Lawsuit For Repairs?

It varies from state to state. In many states, they expect the homeowner to inform the contractor of the defect and give them time to fix it. If the fault is still not resolved, then the homeowner can file a lawsuit. It also depends on whether or not the defect is latent or patent. Three years from the day of discovery of the fault is the shortest time limit.

Who Is Responsible For Construction Defects?

They may be many responsible parties, but the blame goes most commonly to the general contractors or the developers and builders of the project even if the materials used were manufactured defective by other companies. Designers, architects, and other involved parties may also be defendants in litigation.

Should I Make Repairs While The Lawsuit Is Pending, And Can I Recover Those Costs In The Lawsuit?

Usually, the homeowner is expected to protect the property from sustaining additional damage. The lawsuit will recover those costs for you. Failure to perform the necessary routine maintenance check and make repairs can cause additional damages to increase. It can cause the defense to say that there was a failure on the homeowner’s part to mitigate damages.

Selling Your Home During A Pending Lawsuit

Homeowners are usually permitted to sell their homes during the lawsuit. However, they are expected to tell the potential buyer that the house is involved in litigation.

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