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Construction defects: What do they like look? What can I do?

Whether you are building a home or developing land for commercial use, you have a lot at stake when it comes to the construction of a new building. Unfortunately, too many people wind up with costly delays and complications thanks to issues like construction defects, which can ultimately lead to legal disputes.

If you are a homeowner, developer or other party affected by a construction defect, you should understand some basic aspects of what these defects are and what you can do about them.

Like product defects, there are different types of construction defects that can prompt legal action. These defects are put in one of two categories: patent and latent defects.

Patent defects include defects that are quite obvious and immediately noticeable. They include problems like poor waterproofing or non-working heating and electrical systems. Latent defects are discovered over time, perhaps years after a structure has been built. This might include foundation failures and structural problems as well as less obvious or hidden water leaks.

Unaddressed, defects can create serious problems in a building that make it all but impossible for someone to occupy it. A defect could lead to collapses or the growth of toxic mold, which can put people's health in serious jeopardy.

If you have identified a defect either during the construction phase or years after completion, you can take the matter to court. These cases can be resolved in several ways, from having the liable party repair the defect to compensating homeowners or developers for the damage suffered as a result of the defect.

Considering how much can be at stake in these cases as well as the complications that can arise (such as parties denying liability), it can be wise to pursue your case with the help of an attorney familiar with real estate disputes and construction defect claims.

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