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Common New House Construction Problems Home Buyers Face

Real Estate Agent with Velva Dunn

You may decide on new home construction because you think you will have fewer problems than if you buy an existing house. Unfortunately, running into construction problems with a new house build is common and often relates to the standard of work. 

You may be able to live with minor issues like paint splotches but major issues like construction defects need addressing. Here are some of the construction problems you need to look out for. 

Grading and drainage issues

You need to make sure that water drains away from your home and not toward it. Your gutters need to direct water away from your foundations. Many moisture issues in basements are due to improper grading. Wood, metal, and vinyl siding must be a minimum of six inches above soil level and a slope should guide water about four inches away from home. 

A new home building inspector will offer you independent and unbiased advice. The BSS Group was established in Australia over 40 years ago and today, its team of knowledgeable and experienced experts is available to give you the advice you can trust. 

Flooring issues

One of the main causes of poor flooring installation is a lack of surface preparation. Shoddy workmanship can lead to various flooring issues, such as tiles cracking and sloping or uneven floorboards. 

Workmen may have incorrectly nailed the boards or used the wrong fasteners during installation. Poor quality of the wood itself can also cause sagging. Discolored or curling linoleum could result from water infiltrating through foundation cracks. 

Electrical wiring issues

Some builders put in the bare minimum of wiring and you may only realize this once you move in and find you can’t operate some of your appliances. It is important to consult with builders and electricians prior to installation to make sure the electrical system is strong enough to power all your appliances. It helps to make a list of the electrical appliances you use on a regular basis and the rooms in which you use them. 

Poorly fitted doors and windows

When doors and windows aren’t correctly fitted, they let in cold air and heating bills will be higher. This is a common issue and if you don’t pick it up within the warranty period, you have to foot the bill for repairs yourself. A thermal imaging inspection can pick up this issue. 

Gaps and cracks

Cracks in sidewalks, driveways or garage floors could indicate that the soil wasn’t prepared properly or concrete wasn’t properly installed. If you have an exterior deck or patio, you should look for cracks in the surface and where they intersect with the house wall. Any gaps between windows, doors, pipes, ducts, and the home could allow water to get in. 

Look for any water stains in the interior around windows or doors, particularly at window sills or the base of exterior doors. A water stain under a kitchen sink could also indicate a problem. Look for any cracks in interior walls or ceiling surfaces, as they will usually get worse over time. 

Inadequate quality of the finish

The use of inferior sealant in kitchens or bathrooms can not only look terrible but can lead to water ingress and damp. A poor finish overall is more often than not a result of shoddy plastering. 

Re-plastering rooms can be costly and it’s worth inspecting plastering in the daylight to make sure you catch any problems. Poor brickwork pointing is another problem that is not only an obvious aesthetic issue but can lead to water getting in and causing damp. 

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