This recently built home began rotting from the moment of construction to the time the keys were turned over. Worse, the damage was impossible to see.
Every day rain, drizzle, or high humidity from water and condensation crept through the cracks and crevices turning its wooden insides into a giant sponge and decaying the boards that held the house together. Water had been seeping into this new home due to shoddy construction has turned their asset, the most valuable they have, into a liability.
The condition of this home isn’t unique. An investigation into this issue discovered that:
- Rushed production, under trained workers, lower-quality materials, and lax oversight by builders and code inspectors resulted in damage by water so bad that each requires tens of thousands — and sometimes, hundreds of thousands — of dollars to repair.
- Properties constructed with materials other than stucco had problems, too. Some houses with water damage were built by billion-dollar public companies. Others, by small, local firms. Some are 10 or 20 years old. Others are brand-new.
- Several hundred lawsuits filed in the last five years allege that most of these homes contain dozens of violations of the state-mandated building code that ultimately allowed water to drain into both new and renovated homes. Many homes with water damage lack basic weatherproofing materials and coats of stucco are often too thin.
- Even as builders have combated claims, nearly two dozen homeowners said that they were never notified of any potential problem — even as some building executives knew of its extent.
In many cases, moisture may have been trickling in from day one. Underneath seemingly unblemished exteriors made of different materials — brick, stucco, vinyl siding, stone, fiber cement board, and more — water has damaged everything from window sills to insulation that once puffed like pink cotton candy. In some cases, wooden sheathing is so saturated that it now flakes easily, crumbling into mulch-like chips. Mold, termites, and phorid flies have infested some walls.
Other houses are so water-ravaged that they have become structurally unstable.
The team at Mr. and Mrs. Restore say the damage cannot be seen in 80 to 90 percent of cases — meaning many homeowners may unknowingly have the same problem behind their walls. Typically, the problem becomes evident only when the homeowner tries to sell — and a moisture inspection returns the grim news. House after house gets inspected. Scaffolding goes up. The only fix, experts say, is to strip a building down to its wooden base and rebuild, turning well-manicured neighborhoods into construction sites again.
Way before you consider spending time and money to list your home for sale, get your home inspected to catch any issues and prevent them from negatively compounding on you, and your investment. Let the professionals at Mr. and Mrs. Restore inspect your new or recently built home for any water related issues to catch H2O in the act and remediate any issues before they get out of hand.