Every construction project carries a risk, whether severe weather delays work or parties dispute over terms of the contract. However, defect claims pose the greatest risk. Even when builders and developers follow all of the plans down to the last detail, mistakes can happen.
Builders know that construction defects can often lead to time-consuming and expensive litigation, but it can also put the company’s reputation in jeopardy. That is why construction companies must always be mindful of the risk of construction defects – especially the ones that occur most often.
Study: What are the most common construction defects?
LJP Construction Services recently completed a four-year study regarding construction defects. The study determined the most common sources of defects in residential construction projects. These included issues with:
- Weather barriers;
- Mechanical and plumbing systems;
- Window and door installations; and
- Fire-resistant components.
The study also found that these defects commonly resulted from the misinterpretation or deviation from manufacturer plans.
There is some good news. There were fewer defects reported in California, and the state also held a lower deficiency rate than many other states and the national average. Even so, builders face the risk of liability for any defects found in a finished project.
Construction companies must always be diligent when inspecting their work and be on the lookout for these common defects in particular.
Is it possible to prevent these defects?
Construction companies must be proactive, but it is a difficult task to completely eliminate the risk of defects. In many cases, defects do not manifest until long after the project is completed.
However, there are several steps that construction companies can take to mitigate the risk of defects and defect claims, including:
- Completing a thorough review of manufacturer guidelines;
- Performing careful and continuous inspections of work completed;
- Maintaining quality control policies;
- Evaluating individual workers’ labor; and
- Documenting the entire process of the project.
Builders should also review California law and all contract information with an experienced attorney to protect their business against the risks of defect claims and litigation.