Project Brief and Scope
The leaky house project covers the demolition, treatment and rebuild
of a fiber-cement board house with a plaster finish. It was built
using treated timber for the structural frame.
The house was completed in October 1989 and was discovered to have
severe leakage problems shortly after taking possession by a subsequent
vendor [moi] in May 1997.
After an 8.5 year court case, spearheading the raft of legal proceedings
that followed, my case was a landmark in terms of leaky homes, but
rather than being able to take action against the builder, my action
was against a dishonest vendor who failed to declare the leaking
problem when asked during the pre-purchase inspections.
Although I was successful in my proceedings, after payment of legal
fees, and expert fees, little was left to apply to the now escalated
cost of building. In my opinion the building expert engaged in the
case failed to update the cost of repair to one more commensurate
with the market costs at the time the case was finally settled.
Since the cost of building and unavailability of builders has prevented
any repair work to date, I am hopeful that due to the lowered mortgage
interest rates and declining pressure on the building industry,
that I may finally be in a position to tackle this demon.
Scope of Rebuild
Whilst the leakage is extensive throughout the property, the fact
that the structural timber was treated has helped to stem the spread
of rot to some extent. However,
- All cladding must be removed and replaced with a more durable,
- All windows removed - it is likely that these will need to be
- Rotting structural timbers replaced
- The roof has insufficient slope and design issues around the
multiple skylights - so it too must be removed, redesigned and
- Skylights must be removed and replaced with a better designed
- The kitchen must be removed and replaced
- Collapsed flooring must be replaced
- Impacted electrical fittings must be replaced
- All internal flooring will need to be replaced - carpets are
rotting in places and kitchen flooring must be removed to repair
the collapsed floor
Next: Building Specification
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