Construction defects occur when there are problems with home due to a fault of the builder. In general, any condition that causes the value of a home to diminish due to poor construction may be considered a construction defect. Construction defects commonly occur when the builder of a home uses inferior construction materials. Sometimes, the defects occur because of poor workmanship. Often, the defects are a result of a combination of factors including poor engineering, land use, or improper preparation of soil on which the foundation is laid.
Construction defects can generally be divided into the following categories:
- Poor design – issues that involve poor design and engineering, such as a failure to design for drainage of excess water, adequate lighting, proper insulation, firewall protection and irrigation
- Poor workmanship – when a builder uses labor that lacks expertise, is negligent in construction or fails to supervise their work
- Inferior material – when a builder utilizes inferior building materials in construction
- Settlement – failure to design for and correct issues with earth settlement conditions that can lead to landslides, poor grading, improper soil compaction and inability for the structure to hold in surrounding land
- Structural – a design failure that can lead to the collapse of the structure such as ceilings caving in, cracks in walls and foundation
Homeowners can sue the construction company, builder, contractors, subcontractors, architects and other design professionals when they notice a construction defect with their home. However, homeowners must be mindful of the statute of limitations. Statute of limitations provide a certain amount of time during which a homeowner can sue the contractors or builders of their home. The limitations period can range from three years to ten years depending on when the problem was discovered. The limitations also depend on whether the defect was latent or patent. A latent defect is one that is hidden and hard to discover while a patent defect is obvious. Therefore, it is important to act quickly to file a claim when a defect is discovered. The first step should be to contact an experienced real estate litigation attorney in Maryland.
Often, construction defect litigation involves the testimony of various experts. Depending on the construction defects involved in the home, experts in the field of structural engineering, geo-technology, and plumbing may be retained. These experts will investigate the claims, opine on the causes and make recommendations on repairs and costs during depositions and trial. Their testimony is then relied upon by the jury to find fault and award damages.
If homeowners prevail in their construction litigation lawsuit, they are entitled to damages. Damages can be compensatory, such as the cost to repair their home. In some cases, homeowners can also claim costs of litigation such as court costs and attorneys’ fees. They may even include costs for having to live elsewhere while their home is repaired.
Towson Real Estate Litigation Lawyers at Huesman, Jones & Miles, LLC Handle Construction Defect Claims
If you are experiencing issues with your home and suspect that the construction was defective, contact the Towson real estate litigation lawyers of Huesman, Jones & Miles, LLC. You may have a construction defect claim against the builder of your home. Contact us online or call us 443-589-0150 today to get started. Our offices are located in Towson and Hunt Valley, Maryland. We serve clients in Baltimore, Baltimore County, Bel Air, Bentley Springs, Columbia, Freeland, Hampton, Westminster, Essex, Monkton, Sparks Glencoe, Parkton, Phoenix, Pikesville, White Hall, Carroll County, Harford County, and Howard County.