When you hire someone to build a home or commercial property for you, you have expectations that the work and materials will live up to reasonable standards. Unfortunately, that doesn't always happen. Contractors skimp on materials. Laborers do a substandard job. Essential planning is overlooked. Construction defects happen all the time and often the homeowner or business owner must resort to litigation to recover costs and be made whole again.
In order to move forward with litigation, it's important to understand the ways in which courts categorize construction defects. There are four general categories:
- Material deficiencies. Often contractors will try to cut corners by using cheap materials or neglecting to use the right materials, depending on the particular variables at the site. This could be poorly made roof shingles, windows that have the potential to leak, a lack of sheet metal, improper insulation and many more.
- Subsurface deficiencies. Good construction starts with a good foundation. Unfortunately, some builders choose sites that make it difficult to ensure a proper foundation, which can lead to shifting, cracking and drainage problems.
- Design deficiencies. Sometimes the construction defect can start as early as the architect's plans. If he or she draws up plans that are inherently problematic, that could be considered a construction defect.
- Construction deficiencies. Finally, shoddy workmanship can lead to a wide range of defects that could ultimately make the property uninhabitable.
If you feel an architect, contractor or construction worker's negligence lead to a construction defect on your property, you may want to consider speaking with a Florida real estate attorney.