Recently, Guardian Group, Inc.’s Construction Defect Group was called in to consult on a $10MM residence in the Southwest. The high-end residence overlooks a lake and incorporates a significant amount of acreage.





The General Contractor on the new construction home was being sued over moisture intrusion issues at the windows and doors. When the homeowner noticed and reported upon the penetrating water, almost immediately upon move-in, the general contractor made attempts to rectify the problem, but not to the owner’s satisfaction. Instead, the owner wanted $2.5MM to tear off and then reconstruct the home’s entire façade.




Opposing counsel conducted testing that appeared to support the homeowner’s claim, but upon further investigation, Guardian Group’s experts discovered two flaws with the testing protocol. One, the testing took place without notifying the General’s counsel. Two, the building envelope penetration tests, typically 15 minutes in duration, had been stopped prematurely after only 60 seconds.


Regardless of the testing’s integrity and validity, there was an even larger issue at play. Our Construction Defect Group’s review of construction documents and a follow-up meeting with the general contractor revealed something startling: both the windows and doors had been selected and procured by the homeowner, not the General Contractor. The issue was one of faulty products, not workmanship or installation. These very same owner-procured windows and doors were why the testing was stopped prematurely, due to excessive water intrusion. While the adequacy of construction materials would have ordinarily fallen under the general’s responsibilities, by selecting, procuring and mandating the use of (cheaper, inferior) products, the homeowner had (however inadvertently) absolved the general contractor of fault. This provided an absolute defense for the General’s legal team in mediation, resulting in just a nominal settlement, only a tiny percentage of the initial claim.




When construction defect claims, cases and issues manifest, expedience and experience matter most. You can count on our nearly 30 years’ complex construction and engineering claims experience. Call on the Construction Defect experts at Guardian Group, Inc. today.



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