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Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom

1 recommendation

reply to leibold

Re: Garage addition

said by leibold:

The room above the garage is unfinished for now. The building inspector would not have approved the staircase with those issues if the room was finished as living space.

If it's unsafe and a code violation then it has to be now as a stairway is an access method to the "unfinished" space and will be used. The GC should have been made to make it meet code or remove them.


Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

4 edits
reply to leibold

Click for full size
said by leibold:

The room above the garage is unfinished for now. The building inspector would not have approved the staircase with those issues if the room was finished as living space.

That's exactly how the BI explained it to me. The BI said he should force the GC to fix that stuff now but he really doesn't want the GC back after claiming that stuff is the home owner's responsibility. He said I should fix it myself and charge the GC back under his insurance or get a new contractor to fix the stuff then put in a claim against his insurance for it. I am trying to be nice so my solution is just to call it even and move on. The BI wants me to not pay him what I owe him AND put in a claim to have someone else do the work though. That's his recommended course of action. I'm caught in the middle and don't know if I should follow the BI or be nice. I'd tend to follow the BI though since he has some interest in making sure stuff is done right for my protection while the GC's main is money.

The GC did try to hack the code by installed 1x3 strapping as a handrail and 3 pieces of 1x3 strapping hooked to 2 pieces of 2x4 studs as posts with 5-6 nails into the joists to hold them for the guard. The BI just laughed though and the GC said anything over that was my responsibility. He installed it so he's done with it.
--
IF YOU FIND ANY MISTAKES IN MY WORK...Please consider that they are there for a purpose. I try to please everyone and there is always someone looking for mistakes!


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:5
reply to Draiman

How much money is outstanding?



mattmag
Premium,ExMod 2000-03
join:2000-04-09
NW Illinois
kudos:3

1 recommendation

reply to Draiman



Interesting how your GC has now become such a scoundrel, after all the praise you have given him until now. If he was only required to build the upstairs area as storage with future use as occupied/finished space, then the issues you note are moot since it isn't the current use.

I really can't believe your BI who has been your hero all along would have waited until now to say the stairs were not built right?



Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS
reply to John Galt

said by John Galt:

How much money is outstanding?

$1,200 is what's outstanding so it's peanuts really. It's hard to think the GC would toss out a good reference over that. I offered to burn all the pictures I took of the entire project to DVD if he wanted once the project is done before this all happened. Our garage project documented as well as it is would be great marketing worth more then $1,200 I'd think.
--
IF YOU FIND ANY MISTAKES IN MY WORK...Please consider that they are there for a purpose. I try to please everyone and there is always someone looking for mistakes!


AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1
reply to Draiman

What did the drawings show?



Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

said by AVD:

What did the drawings show?

The designer is stopping by Friday to check out the garage. He assumed the GC would build to code and said "When you have stairs you have x, y, and z you need to do for code and I shouldn't have to spell it out on the plans for a highly experienced and licensed GC." He went on to say "I didn't need to say use (2) 16D common nails per side for each stud yet they did that to code."

I can't help but laugh at the finger pointing between people on this last little bit. The GC might hurt his rep with a few people over it.
--
IF YOU FIND ANY MISTAKES IN MY WORK...Please consider that they are there for a purpose. I try to please everyone and there is always someone looking for mistakes!


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:5
reply to Draiman

Is part of the agreement that you are going to do the interior finish work?



Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

said by John Galt:

Is part of the agreement that you are going to do the interior finish work?

Nothing in the contract on any interior finish work except a firewall as required by code. The contract filed with the state says the GC is going to build a "27' x 28' 2 car garage with stairs to loft". The BI's view point is the state filed plans say "Stairs" on them and he opened the permit so it's the GC's responsibility to do the work to code and close the permit out. That sounds reasonable but again I'm just caught in the middle trying to figure out how to handle it.
--
IF YOU FIND ANY MISTAKES IN MY WORK...Please consider that they are there for a purpose. I try to please everyone and there is always someone looking for mistakes!

garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI
Reviews:
·Callcentric
·callwithus

Too bad the inspector issued a CO. If he hadn't that would have put more pressure on the GC. Since the premit did say "stairs" he should've required them to meet code.

Coulda' shoulda' woulda', I know. Now you're stuck having to finish the job.



Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

said by garys_2k:

Too bad the inspector issued a CO. If he hadn't that would have put more pressure on the GC. Since the premit did say "stairs" he should've required them to meet code.

Coulda' shoulda' woulda', I know. Now you're stuck having to finish the job.

Yea the BI said the same thing today when I talked to him. He wanted to close it out for us to be able to use legally but also wanted to stick it to the GC. In the end the home owner is his priority so he signed off being a nice guy to help us get on with the project. That's why he suggested going after the GC's $10,000 guaranteed state backed insurance. That way I can have someone else do the work at the GC's expense. He said there's nothing the GC can do to stop a claim in this situation. The Bi went as far as to offer to fill the paperwork out himself for me and he'd stand behind me if needed to the state. He already talked to the state last week on it actually just in case.
--
IF YOU FIND ANY MISTAKES IN MY WORK...Please consider that they are there for a purpose. I try to please everyone and there is always someone looking for mistakes!


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:5
reply to Draiman

Can you post a few shots of the stairs looking up from the bottom?



Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

said by John Galt:

Can you post a few shots of the stairs looking up from the bottom?

Yea let me find one. There's no risers and the treads are 1" x 6" but under the stairs is firewalled so there's no opening for anyone to fall though which is why the BI allowed it to pass for now.
--
IF YOU FIND ANY MISTAKES IN MY WORK...Please consider that they are there for a purpose. I try to please everyone and there is always someone looking for mistakes!


Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

1 edit
reply to Draiman

Click for full size
Click for full size
How's this?


Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS
reply to Draiman

Click for full size
I went back and looked at a few sets of plans. I approved a set on June 8th with the attached image in the plans. It appears the GC asked the designer to remove this the day before I was to sign off on the plans without my knowledge or approval and I guess I didn't even notice until now. This diagram was replaced with the words 'Const 36" high railing' so I think the GC was trying to cut costs from the beginning I just didn't notice.
--
IF YOU FIND ANY MISTAKES IN MY WORK...Please consider that they are there for a purpose. I try to please everyone and there is always someone looking for mistakes!


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:5
reply to Draiman

said by Draiman:

How's this?

That's a good shot.

I do construction inspections and litigation documentation support for a living. Here's the problem as I see it...you have ambiguous contract documents and construction documents.

Therein lies your problem.

You can fight the GC in court but you won't win. You can make a claim against the GCs bond, but you won't win. You can make a claim against the GCs insurance, but you won't win.
--
The most powerful weapon in the world is ignorance. Politicians exploit it to achieve almost anything they want.


garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI
reply to Draiman

said by Draiman:

It appears the GC asked the designer to...

Who paid the architect, you or the GC?


Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

said by garys_2k:

said by Draiman:

It appears the GC asked the designer to...

Who paid the architect, you or the GC?

I paid for everything that's how it works being the customer. LOL
--
IF YOU FIND ANY MISTAKES IN MY WORK...Please consider that they are there for a purpose. I try to please everyone and there is always someone looking for mistakes!

garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI
Reviews:
·Callcentric
·callwithus

Yeah, what I meant was, did you cut a check directly to the architect (he was working directly for you) or did the GC pay the architect from money you first paid to to that GC (he was working for the GC)?

If the second, then the architect was not obligated to tell you about the change. If the first he WAS and he ought to be brought to the "errors and omissions" party.



Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

said by garys_2k:

Yeah, what I meant was, did you cut a check directly to the architect (he was working directly for you) or did the GC pay the architect from money you first paid to to that GC (he was working for the GC)?

If the second, then the architect was not obligated to tell you about the change. If the first he WAS and he ought to be brought to the "errors and omissions" party.

It was 50/50. He paid the first half and I paid the second half. I think I ended up paid out about 20-25% of the overall project to vendors directly. Sometimes to get discounts and other times because the vendor wanted to be paid on the spot and the GC's checks weren't worth anything to the vendor.
--
IF YOU FIND ANY MISTAKES IN MY WORK...Please consider that they are there for a purpose. I try to please everyone and there is always someone looking for mistakes!

garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI

So, did you sign the agreement with the architect, or did the GC?



Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

3 edits
reply to Draiman

For now I'm just going to call it even with the GC. If he'll accept that we'll be done. If he has a problem with that he can start the arbitration process under the law but he knows he'll lose there. He's got no proof that I owe him anything. All written change orders and the original contract amounts have been paid as agreed as of right now. If it went to court legally we're done and paid in full right now yet he forced me to fix code violations for him. I'm 100% sure as is the BI that the state would approve the bond claim. After all the BI already talked to the state about it. If I go that road I'll donate anything I get minus actual material costs to charity. I don't want to benefit but I don't want the GC to think he can screw anyone else this way either.
--
IF YOU FIND ANY MISTAKES IN MY WORK...Please consider that they are there for a purpose. I try to please everyone and there is always someone looking for mistakes!


Critsmcgee

join:2011-12-02
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS
reply to Draiman

It sounds like the contractor took advantage of you in the beginning then slipped up at the end so 2 wrongs make a right in this case.

I'm dumbfounded at how many people defaulted to trying to justify the contractor did their job. They ignored the city inspector and even the IRC code all in an attempt to justify the contractor's work. No wonder why contractor's take advantage of people!



AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1

That's a cheap shot. we are playing devil's advocate. How will the GC counter the OP's arguments?
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* seek help if having trouble coping
--Standard disclaimers apply.--


Critsmcgee

join:2011-12-02

If there's nothing in writing it is checkmate for the contractor. General Custer is calling.



AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1

There is stuff in writing.


Critsmcgee

join:2011-12-02
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

said by AVD:

There is stuff in writing.

said by Draiman:

All written change orders and the original contract amounts have been paid as agreed as of right now.

Unless I'm blind that says there's nothing in writing the contractor can use in a negative way. What do you suggest would be used in the contractor's defense in writing? I'm playing devil's advocate of course!


AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1

if everything is paid, what being retained?


Critsmcgee

join:2011-12-02
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

said by AVD:

if everything is paid, what being retained?

Exactly! The debt is vaporware without proof. This is a great lesson why you never make verbal agreements in business. ALWAYS put it in writing.

Massachusetts is a 2 way recording state so even if the contractor recorded the verbal approval he did so illegally.

Critsmcgee

join:2011-12-02
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

2 edits
reply to Draiman

Of course that's based on the assumption of the OP's statement that the debt owed is verbal only since all written debts have been settled. If the debt can be proven then it all falls back to IRC which should always fall into the contractor's plate. You can't sell a contract to build a garage then not deliver it because you don't want to do it to code correctly so the city won't allow the customer to use it. The contractor defaulted on the contract period. They sold a garage and didn't deliver it as promised. They delivered an incomplete project and should get paid accordingly.