Contractors, Builders, and Engineers, Liable for Defective Home Construction in Broad Array of Product Liability Claims
Builders of new homes may be responsible for a variety of defects, often as a result of poor design, use of inferior materials, or incorrect installation. The tough reality is that just because a home is new does not mean it is free of defects. The construction industry is imperfect, and many contractors have been known to make mistakes that are uncovered years after the building is complete.
Problems may surface during construction or can lay unattended and it could be a long time before visible signs of defects appear. Many defects are caused by major underlying problems like an improper foundation that comprises not only components of a home, but the entire investment.
If your home is built with substantial defects that the developer refuses to fix, you could face major costs for both the repairs and an expensive lawsuit against the developer.
Joe Lyon is a highly-rated Cincinnati, Ohio attorney with experience engaging insurance companies and filing real-estate claims. Mr. Lyon has represented plaintiffs nationwide in a wide variety of civil litigation claims, including claims of defective home construction.
Warranties for newly built homes generally offer limited coverage on workmanship and materials relating to various components. Many defects also fall outside of a warranties timeframe.
As a general rule, faulty construction is excluded from homeowners’ policies. It may happen that the company that gave the warranty has less money available than what repairs would cost.
Most warranties for new homes will not cover expenses an owner may incur as a consequence of a major construction defect, such as the cost of moving out of one’s home while repairs are being made. They also rarely cover components covered under a manufacturer’s warranty.
Many building problems occur with new construction because of carelessness and cost-cutting. Low-cost subcontractors may not be professional, and may hide a defect or mistake.
It’s also possible that building inspectors do not have time to inspect properly. Some inspectors may be scheduled to see dozens of new homes in a single day. Local governmental code inspections do not guarantee there will be no defects.
Foundation problems are some of the most common and most expensive to resolve. Most home warranties cover only “Major Structural Damage,” which requires the home to be unsafe or unlivable, before coverage is initiated.
Sometimes after reviewing a foundation failure, the warranty or builder may claim the foundation must be “maintained” by the homeowner.
Mold is not a construction defect, but may be the result of one or more defects on a specific property. One common situation of a water damaged home is a slow plumbing leak inside home walls or under the poorly laid foundation of a home. Constant release of moisture will provides a medium for potentially dangerous mold. If a construction defect is identified, a builder or contractor may be liable for the cost of mold remediation and subsequent repairs.
To be valid and to properly recover damage costs from the responsible parties, claims must be filed shortly after the issue is discovered. Insurance may not cover all or any of the expenses, and builders or contractors should be held accountable. If mold exists in a home and an individual develops an illness due to the presence of mold, a home defect and personal injury claim may exist. Personal injury claims are not always easily proven, though a construction defect is fairly obvious to investigating attorneys and construction consultants.
Toxic mold in American homes is more prevalent than previously thought. Toxic molds can cause household air quality problems leading to allergies and respiratory illness. The Mayo Clinic has concluded that in more than 95 percent of American patients suffering from chronic sinus disease, a reaction to mold is the primary culprit.
Some typical symptoms of toxic mold poisoning can include:
• Chronic fatigue
• Memory loss
• Chronic cold symptoms
• Frequent bloody nose
• Persistent coughing
• Chest pain
• Skin redness/rashes
Building a new home is a tremendous financial commitment, and every homeowner deserves a competent and honest builder and developer. Discovering defective work and disputing defects can be very stressful, particularly when filing claims on contracts and warranties. For this reason, it is wise to contact an experienced attorney to assist homeowners in identifying and assessing the problems, developing a plan to remedy a defective home, and to protect your home investment.
If your home has recently been found defective, and have questions about the legal remedies available to receive fair compensation for repair costs in Ohio, contact The Lyon Firm (800) 513-2403. You will speak directly with Mr. Lyon, and he will help you answer critical questions regarding a defective home.