Are the dead condo projects of today the defect nightmares of tomorrow?



Having read in both our local papers and statewide/nationwide publications the dire news of homebuilding sputtering to a stop amongst production builders; I read about several such local projects that was infamously featured in the Tribune when a local hard money lender went belly up, causing numerous projects to come to a screeching halt due to a lack of funding.

This one particular condo project in San Luis Obispo has been framed out, windows in, paper for stucco up and decks just starting to be dried in when it seems the money stopped coming in.

Now it’s been sitting for months out in the weather- rain, heat cold, sun all being thrown at OSB siding, plywood and waterproofing materials that aren’t designed for long exposure to the elements.

On some decks, there is plywood, delaminating, splitting, checking. On others, OSB, exposed where the work stopped with lath and cement down on most but not all areas.

All these areas and materials-what will be done when this job eventually starts back up again? These waterproofing materials are all compromised by weather and exposure. Mold, mildew and fungus dry-rot spores are all probably about, starting their mayhem.
Will a builder pull the materials off and start anew? Probably not, there’s not going to be enough funding to do so-investors wnat their money out of the project, they already have to much in and the builder wants to “get ‘er done” as I rip off Larry The Cable Guy’s line.

It will be interesting to see what evolves when and if this project gets going again. What will the subs say about the weatherbeaten materials? Will they accept them and go over them? There’s a saying in the industry of “You cover it, you own it.”

If I was the deck guy on this project, I wouldn’t be covering over any of the materials I saw yesterday on this job…

My prediction-today’s construction projects like this one will become the new construction defect suits of tomorrow.

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