Builders take shortcuts in a number of ways, and it often leaves homebuyers holding the bag. Even though homebuyers have legal recourse, many of these shortcuts may put the integrity of the building and the safety of its occupants in danger. Here are five ways that builders cut corners to save time or money at their customers’ expense.
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Subpar Building Materials
Building materials are a large part of the construction cost, and they are the foremost way that a builder tries to skimp. Things like lumber, roofing, and flooring have lower-cost options, and there is usually a difference in quality. Some buyers pay for an upscale building, but the builder uses cut-rate building materials. This often becomes apparent very quickly after the buyer takes possession.
Using Unskilled Labor
There are noticeable benefits of hiring experienced construction workers who know what they are doing. Unfortunately, builders may decide to save money by hiring cheaper workers. However, they generally get what they pay for since construction workers are not fungible.
Not Properly Sizing Systems
The builder is obligated to provide things like an HVAC system and refrigerator with the initial construction. Homes need utilities to be sized properly to reflect the square footage. Builders may install air conditioners and hot water heaters that are too small to save money, even though the home size requires larger units.
Installing Things Incorrectly
The construction process takes time to get right. Many installations have intricate multi-step processes and must be sequenced correctly. Builders may skip a step or two to save time or allow one trade to install before another simply to save time and money. This is where buyers need to be careful because things may look like they have been installed correctly, and problems only manifest themselves later in time.
Every construction job should have a foreman who oversees the job and ensures that it is done correctly. This should be a skilled and experienced person. However, some builders do not have a supervisor or hire an inexperienced person to save money. Supervision is much of what ensures that building standards and codes are followed. Without it, unskilled workers may make mistakes that buyers get stuck with for years to come.
Many buyers contact a construction defect attorney when they discover that the builder cut corners. They may be able to recover when the builder does not provide them with what they paid for under the contract if they file a construction lawsuit.