As a contractor, you know about building sturdy buildings and houses for your customers. As you begin new projects, however, you often hire subcontractors to work on different parts of the building.
Getting a phone call about one of your most recent building projects may not make you feel very happy, especially when the homeowner says they have noticed a defect in the work.
When you learn about the problem
The first thing you need to do is try to determine whether the problem is truly a defect. It’s important to remember that a dissatisfied customer doesn’t always equal a true construction defect if the customer got what they demanded. If the customer is simply unhappy with what they ordered, you can try to discuss reasonable solutions that will suit you both.
If the customer is willing, take a look at what they are calling a defect. If they’re correct — a window won’t close or a wall isn’t straight or there is some other problem — you need to know whether the defect comes from:
- The workmanship of your own crew
- The materials that were used
- The work done by a subcontractor
- The architectural designs that you were provided
If a defect does exist, you may still be legally liable to the homeowner, since you’re the general contractor — but one of the other parties may be liable to you. You need to make sure that you carefully review all the contracts between all parties to make sure that you fully understand your defense options and how to cover your losses.