Regarding legal tip on Maria’s blog.
10 year guarantee
It is my opinion that a majority of promoters and constructors do not include the Optional Coverage.
Due to the high costs involved for them to insure the shoddy building practices and quality of the finishes, and also the use of sub standard materials.
The obligation falls on the promoter and constructor to remedy the defects if they have not included these additional options in the 10 year guarantee.
Our community had been handed over in a mess with every defect listed in the optional coverage manifesting itself after the first major rain storm.
Our promoter did not include the optional coverage for the construction. It is excluded specifically in the 10 year guarantee.
The burofax was duly sent within the first year by the administrator and the promoter replied that the defects would be repaired within 15 days.
The promoter never resolved any of the defects and did not respond to further meetings with the board of the community.
Although at every meeting with the board it was promised that all the defects would be repaired. The meetings ceased after December 2007.
The new board has had further meetings this year the result is the same promises made and no construction defects repaired.
This problem evolved before the credit crunch and “Fall of the brick.”
The promoter is still viable and is building other projects.
Our community has agreed at the recent AGM to take the promoter to court. The cost of the architects independent report, lawyers and court costs are going to cost the community 20-25000.00€ and because of the delays in the court system it may take up to 2 to 3 years to get judgment on the admitted defects on the burofax list.
The community has also proceeded through the courts with embargos on the empty properties still owned by the promoter for unpaid community fees 65000€ and increasing. Another burden for the community fee and budget.
The question I have for readers is it possible to embargo any remaining properties owned by the promoter on other projects to protect our position if the promoter declares bankruptcy or protection from bankruptcy before the court case is resolved.
That is to say the money from sales of empty properties is necessary to pay for the repairs of the defects which amount to over 250000.00€ to repair.
If the promoter becomes bankrupt the first charge is to the bank to whom the promoter still owes the mortgage.
- Community insurance does not cover building defects.
- House insurance does not cover building defects.
- The 10 year guarantee does not include the defects offered in the optional coverage. They are specifically excluded in the guarantee.
So the only true option for our ‘new’ development is the court. Why? Because the community will have to pay through the community fees as the years go by to repair the defects.
Ultimately whichever way this ends up “we are where we are” and the costs to the community will have to be resolved by every legal measure.
As always there may be other ideas out there or other communities may have succeeded by other solutions. For example some promoters actually may at the time had many projects under construction therefore publicity of court cases do not help with future customers and finance. So they resolve defects to keep the profit rolling in.
But in todays climate the implicit threat is take me to court and you get nothing because of the credit crunch….Blah!….Blah!…..Blah!
It is a myth to imagine solutions to building defects are a simple matter. They are high cost high risk long legal matters which take years to solve.
Are they honourable responsible people? Our promoter dismissed the builder after the project was handed over. Or I should say the construction company dismissed themselves by not doing the snagging and building defects which the promoter would not pay him or his workforce for carrying out the outstanding work.
The construction company no longer exists. The promoter settled with him by giving him empty properties in the residence.
The architect disappeared somewhere over the horizon and the promoter uses a “new” architect on his projects. If you do see him let us know he wears a tall hat and rides a horse.
Why do I mention the constructor and the architect? Well they have to be notarized on the writ. So being responsible people they thought the best option was to hop it before they become involved with the court writs.
Sharp practice and spivs are alive and kicking.
The only sure fact is promoters make promises and inducements that they never honour.