View Full Version : Help with new construction quandry
September 22nd, 2006, 11:39 AM
I bought an apartment in a new building a year ago and the building is a couple months out from being completed. I have repetedly tried to get the developer to allow me in to the apartment to take measurements for my architect/designer to start his work. They have been completely unhelpful. When asked for an accurate scale plan they refused. They won't let us in for 20 mins to measure...claiming some sort of conflict with the contractor. I know technically it's not my apartment yet...and I am pretty much hamstrung till I make settlement...but is there any hope for me to pressure my way in? I've even offered to pay, but no dice. It seems ridiculous I'm paying a crazy amount for a new place I can't prepare to move into.
September 22nd, 2006, 12:46 PM
You need to keep riding everyone until they let you in. Most contractors don't want the client in the building because most clients have zero clue what a building under construction looks like.
Personally I think everyone who is buying new construction or a renovation should go and make sure the unit they are purchasing is not only built correctly but to see what they will be living with for a long time. Developers and builders for the most part take the we'll construct it and you can inspect it when you can't see what is behind the walls.
I had it worked into my contract that I was allowed to bring in my own inspectors at certain milestones in the construction. The builder hated it, but he really had no choice as the developer agreed to it to sell my unit to me. I caught defects that were minor to fix when I caught them but would have been annoying later on. Examples you ask?
Cable wire cut 15 feet from outlet and duck taped together.
Bedroom wall out of level and plumb. The real estate agent told me that the drywall would fix it. Fortunately I actually work in construction and knew to ask for it to be corrected.
The concrete floor had a slight depression about 2'x2' it simply needed levelastic but when the 'exotic hardwood' floor went over it, man would that have been an annoying squeak.
The toilet flange was broken. The toilet would have rocked. I would hope the finish plumber would have noticed before I did, but it was a simple defect.There were other little things like poorly routed electrical wiring, but those were not out of code, just not how I would have done it.
If you didn't ask for the right to inspect and visit in your contract you're pretty much relying on the good will of the developer, builder and real estate agent. I might suggest if you get no where, have your lawyer write a note officially asking for the right to inspect the unit as soon as humanly possible.
It's your money, why not ask those building it for you to show you thier work. If someone doesn't want to show me the work in progress, I question the quality of the work. Professionals are expected to work in a workmanlike manner. In reality, cutting corners just makes the world a crappy place.
September 24th, 2006, 12:44 PM
pressure him or her to lean on the developer . . . calls coming from an agent (who they might have to deal with again) will have more force than calls coming from you (who are just an annoyance).
(Chelsea/downtown real estate agent)
September 24th, 2006, 09:41 PM
The other issue I've heard is that the developer does not want the liability of you buying furniture/designing built-ins and then the construction plan changes prior to closing.
September 25th, 2006, 12:53 PM
Thanks for the advice. I'm on an every other week bug the broker of the building schedule. He's very persnickity and I have a feeling my being a nuisance isn't helping...but It's the only thing I can do not to feel powerless.
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