Check the quality of ‘new’

by Stickywire on Saturday April 21, 2012

If you are buying a new home or having one built for you, cast a close eye on the quality of construction. You may need to sharpen your eyesight and skills or even hire an engineer because it is the basics that are failing the grade as new house quality, in general, steadily declines.

The reason quality is less than it was a decade and more ago is because of a shortage of trained craftspeople and today’s use of specialists like plumbers and electricians who work in isolation.

The plasterer of years gone by would not frame walls that were out of kilter because he would have to work with that mess in a few weeks and the same crew would not build an out-of-true foundation and try to frame the floors above. Today, specialists can leave the job for someone else to finish, without accountability.

There are good builders in the business today with pride in the finished product. Even the best builder, however, has to struggle in an age where consumers want big and immediate instead of quality that will take time and cost more.

Home buyers and builders should do their homework or hire experts who can tell whether a home was built by new workers with old-fashioned principles and skills or by workers who are quick to walk away from a sloppy job because they don’t really care and neither does the person who then lives in the place.

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