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San Diego Construction Law Blog

No room for recklessness at construction sites

Construction worker safety has to be a priority at the job site. There isn't any room for recklessness or carelessness. Everything has to be carefully planned from the daily schedule through the step-by-step use of machinery. When these points aren't followed precisely, the workers who are handling the jobs are the ones who might suffer.

In some construction zones, there isn't a good culture of safety because the managers are far too relaxed. They don't demand that workers follow the basic rules, and they don't set the standard themselves. This sets up the workers for an almost certain difficult time of trying to avoid injuries. Having management that team that requires workers to follow safety practices also enables the workers to feel safe at work.

Subpar plumbing work can lead to disasters

Hiring a plumbing contractor to update or install plumbing in your home is sometimes necessary, but it is imperative that you find the right person to handle the job. You need to find a person who will do the job for an affordable price but who is going to perform quality work. Unfortunately, there are times when an unscrupulous plumber will do subpar work, which can cause serious problems in your home.

One problem that can be costly occurs when the pipes leak. This can happen where you can easily notice it, such as under the bathroom sink. It can also occur in hidden locations, such as under the subfloor. When there is a leak, you will have to have the plumbing redone. This might entail having to pull up flooring or destroying other parts of the home to reach the leak. It is also possible that you will have to repair or replace things that were damaged by the leaking water.

Subpar contractors can cost you money!

Having a dispute with a contractor who is working on your home can feel like a huge stressor. It is often best to take a moment to think about what options you have when this happens. This gives you a chance to formulate a plan and ensure that what you are doing is in your best interests. We realize that keeping your anger under control when there is a preventable and blatant issue might not be easy, but it will usually be worth it in the long run.

One thing that you must realize is that the contractor must meet the terms of the contract they have with you. This is why it is so important to have a written contract that outlines the scope of the work. Without this, the matter becomes a "he said-she said" ordeal that can be hard to sort out.

What you need to know about changes to construction contracts

Having work done in the construction industry can be a complex undertaking. You have to find a contractor who can get the project done, and you have to find terms that are negotiable to both sides. In most cases, there are going to be adjustments to the terms of the contract when you are working through the project. These alterations are usually relayed through change orders.

A change order is an addition or omission from the original contract. Both parties have to agree on the terms of the order. There are many reasons why this might be necessary. Something as simple as adding a window to a home's plans or deciding that you want a different type of flooring would require a change order.

Signs of a foundation issue that you shouldn't ignore

The foundation of a building is meant to last the life of the structure. When there are issues with the foundation, there is a good chance that the entire building can suffer. In the most extreme cases, the structure might lean or fall.

There are several things that signal an issue with the foundation. Becoming familiar with them can help you greatly, whether you just had a new building erected or have moved into an older one.

  • Doors and windows that stick. When you notice that doors don't open and close easily, your building might need to be evaluated for a foundation problem. Another issue to watch for is if the frames of those doors or windows separate from the wall.
  • Cracks in the wall. It doesn't matter if these are internal or external, they all signal a potential problem. These can be possible anywhere, but be especially wary when they occur above doors or windows that are sticking.
  • Wallpaper lifts or nails pop out. Both of these signs signal very serious problems. While it might not be a huge deal if they occur in only one small area, more widespread problems demand immediate action.
  • Bouncing floors. If the floors in your home feel almost like a trampoline, there might be a foundation issue, but there could also be a problem in the basement or crawlspace that is causing a buildup of humidity.

Address construction issues right away

Construction law matters can be very serious, not only because you deserve to have projects done how you want them, but also because a failure to keep the schedule can cost you money. There aren't many good reasons why contractors should run behind schedule. If you find that your project isn't being done on time, try to find out what happened and what the contractor is doing to get back on track.

Besides running behind schedule, there are many other things that might have happened during the course of the project. You might be able to spot some of these if you visit the job site often and get updates on what is going on.

Arbitration is included in some construction contracts

Many construction contracts outline a way that you will be able to handle disputes with the contractor. One of the possibilities is arbitration, which is an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) method. This is used instead of going to court to handle the matter. If this is included in your contract, you should understand what it means.

Contractors usually prefer this way to resolving issues because it is often less expensive and less time-consuming than going through a trial. You should remember that if you sign a contract including a clause for arbitration, you are agreeing to use that method if there is a dispute. One thing to find out is how the arbitrator or panel is chosen so that you know whether they are experienced in these matters.

Beware of issues that arise during the rainy season

As the spring rains come, people in this area of California must be vigilant to watch for signs of issues that come with the overflow of rains. Water damage to roofs, foundations and other components of structures can lead to serious issues. For most people, there aren't going to be any problems that come from it. When there are problems that arise, they must be addressed promptly, or massive destruction can occur.

One thing that many people don't think is how construction defects might play a part in this situation. The fact here is that any issues with the building can exacerbate the impacts of the rainy season. For example, a foundation without proper drainage might fail. This puts the entire building in danger of falling. Another example is a roof that isn't properly installed. There is a chance that it could fall in due to the weight of the waterlogged trusses and other components.

Issues with roof installations can produce serious problems

Having a new roof put on a building is sometimes necessary to help keep the interior of the structure protected from the weather. Failing to get it done properly and in a timely fashion can mean that the inside of the building suffers damage. This can be costly.

While many roofing jobs are successfully completed, there are times when the contractor doesn't handle things in the correct manner. They might use shoddy materials or might try to rush through the job and make errors in the workmanship. Unfortunately, these both mean that the building's owner may have to deal with damage later.

Hold contractors accountable for defects

Building contractors have a lot of responsibility to the people who hire them. They need to make sure that they understand the project, have the skills to do the work and can get the proper supplies for the job. Most of the time, they do what they have to do and the client is satisfied upon completion of the project. In the other cases, if some facet of the project didn't go as it should, there can be disagreements about how to resolve the matter.

When you hire a building contractor, you count on them to let you know if there are any issues. Some contractors don't inform clients that something is amiss. If you discover that there are any defects in the worksmanship, you can confront the contractor about correcting the issue. This could mean having to completely redo the project or allow the contractor to attempt to fix the problem.

Law Office of Bryan R. Snyder, APC
1245 Island Avenue
San Diego, CA 92101

Toll Free: 800-611-2581
Phone: 619-752-1102
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