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3 main categories for construction defects

Construction defects can take many different forms, but what you'll find is that many of them fall into three broad categories. It's important to know the differences between them if you think you have a case.

First of all, the defects could just be caused by poor workmanship. All of the parts and materials are perfect and the design is sound, but the workers do not install them properly. For instance, an electrician trying to cut corners could fail to use proper boxes when installing electrical wiring and cause a fire hazard. Defects could also be simple issues like cabinets that are crooked or countertops that aren't cut perfectly.

Defects may also be caused by problems with the materials themselves. For instance, the contractor could perfectly install new windows, but the windows themselves may leak. They were imperfectly designed or manufactured. That's no fault of the contractor's, but they still leave you with serious water problems.

Finally, defects may stem from design issues. The materials themselves are flawless and the contractor installed them in accordance with the plans, but the architect made a mistake. The building isn't stable, isn't vented properly, or has other inherent issues when built as instructed. These problems may only be caught by the inspector after all of the work has been completed.

All of these issues, though different, can leave you with a home with significant defects and long-term issues. Be sure you know what legal options you have. You deserve a high quality of workmanship in all areas and may be able to take action when you don't receive it.

Source: Findlaw, "Types of Construction Defects," accessed July 06, 2017

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