I just had a custome home built and they had a county inspection…and it passed! But i have found many problems. here are some but not all:

  • There is no smoke detector downstairs and our bedrooms are upstairs
  • I had ppl tell me my deck off my master is unsafe: doesnt have hangers floor is side to side instead front 2 back off the strenth of my house… its side to sid off the rear screen poarch! It is a 12 by 12 and bounces when u walk on it
  • everthing was poorly done from the electrical to the wood floors! We paid TOP DOLLAR FOR LOW BUDGET WORK!! I NEED HELP AND ANSWERS TO KNOW WHAT TO DO FROM HERE!!!

We didn’t move in till the end of Sept, but the contract was signed in Feb. to start project and it said i have 1 yr from that date!! PLEASE HELP!!!

This is a prime reason why new homes need inspections. “Builders” don’t pay attention to the sub-contractors they hire to perform certain tasks. They trust them to do things correctly and instead they get cheap.

If it were me, I would not be waiting until the 1 year mark for an inspection. Have a full home inspection performed immediately and turn the issues in to the builder for repair. He may or may not be around at the end of a year. Try putting your area / location in your post and you may get a more regional answer in regards to some of your issues.

Always remember, A home built to code is the cheapest home allowed by law.

I think you need to talk to a lawyer immediately , This is not something that can wait … Roy

You need to hire a qualified reputable home inspector in your area to perform a thorough inspection of the house/property followed with a detailed and easy to understand report outlining the defects they discover and then present this report to the builder.

If i do get an inspection and it list problems is the builder responsability to fix it or will he just say it passed his inspection then i will be out money

And when you get that report, if there are any clear code violations, take the report to your local Building Official and ask him for an explanation. If you aren’t satisfied with his/her explanations, speak with the City or County manager. If you aren’t satisfied with that and you are certain that significant building code defects got by the inspector, speak with your local TV station.

I would recommend you hire an inspector who is also ICC certified in this situation.

P.S. A certificate of occupancy from the Building Official can be revoked!

Forget the inspector. No one is compelled to even read his report any more than they are to act on it.

Your first step should be to hire a real estate attorney and go from there.

Most, not all, but most new construction has a 1 year “warranty”. At times it is required by a local, county or state regulation. After that period, there are sometimes requirements for a longer warranty on “structural” issues. The warranty period should start from the time you sign documents and take possession of the property, not when you entered into a contract to have the home built. That would not make sense since many custom homes take almost a year to complete.

Most home inspectors will not quote exact codes. While they base their opinions on the recent codes, very few will actually quote the actual language of the code. Since Joe is a code official in his jurisdiction, his advice may hold more credence in regards to questioning the building department approval.

Once again, list your location and you may get more specific recommendations. Every state is different and the local jurisdictions within those states can also have more restrictive codes. Help yourself and list your location.

Be aware that there is a difference between poor workmanship and failing to adhere to building codes (the minimum requirement). The smoke alarm issue sounds like a definite code violation, and inspectors make mistakes like that. Shoddy workmanship, however, is often a matter of opinion and a code official may have no choice other than to pass it.

Caveat Emptor. Your mistake was in not hiring a qualified inspector before closing time. All your bargaining power is gone now that the builder has been paid.

When you do hire an inspector, DO NOT let $$$ dictate who you hire. In most cases, this is a prime example of “you get what you pay for”! Cheap out on the inspector, and you only have yourself to blame if you get a “less than quality” inspection.

I do 2 or 3 one year warranty inspections on new construction every month. The builders do “read” the report and “act on it” by making needed repairs.

Indeed they do.

The time to hire a home inspector is prior to … not after … you have encountered difficulties with the builder. An inspector at this point is as useful to you as a third nipple. Hire a lawyer who specializes in real estate law, fast, and do what he advises you to do.

I also do quite a bit of warranty inspections. Builders act on the items they agree with. However, they often refuse to make recommended repairs, replying with “the house passed inspection and got a CO”.

Please read post 3 & 7 again …Now … Roy

I live in Phenix City, Alabama

Jim, unless I’m missing something the buyer has not encountered difficulties with the builder yet. In my opinion he needs a third party inspection for record before attaining a lawyer. Or attain one and I bet he or she advises a third part inspection so he or she has something to fight the builder with. If you don’t agree, why not?

He has already moved into the house. He does not “need” an inspection before seeing a lawyer if he has already uncovered major discrepancies on his own.

Contractors regularly use political influence or money to “pass” municipal inspections. Putting a home inspector with his simple observations alongside of those already made by the home buyer does nothing at this point — as it possibly would have before closing and the builder had yet to be paid.

Now, the clock is ticking as the statute of limitations and other legislative purchases made by contractors to protect their interests are expiring.

If an inspection is of value, the attorney will advise it. He must be consulted first … and immediately. If he has a case, his lawyer will tell him (and will tell him what he needs to do to recover his damages, as well).

I would get a quality inspection before I threw money in a lawyers pocket. There may be nothing more than cosmetic issues.

With less then a month to go he needs to get started or lose out ,
The Builder has every thing to gain by more time wasting … Roy