Becker & Poliakoff

“Townhome, Condominium and New Construction Home Issues in Florida: Helping Homeowners Navigate the Legal Process” – Central Florida Times

“Townhome, Condominium and New Construction Home Issues in Florida: Helping Homeowners Navigate the Legal Process” – Central Florida Times

Purchasing a new townhome, condominium or single-family home in Central Florida is an exciting milestone, but construction defects can quickly turn that dream into a nightmare. At Becker, our construction attorneys specialize in representing homeowners and homeowner’s associations facing construction defects, offering expert legal guidance and advocacy. In this article, we will discuss residential construction defects and provide an overview of the steps necessary for seeking remedies or compensation. We will also highlight how our firm can help navigate the legal process, ensuring homeowners’ rights are protected and their investments are secure.

Unraveling Construction Defects

Construction defects can undermine the quality, safety, and value of your new townhome, condo or single-family home community. These flaws may include structural issues, stucco issues, water intrusion, roof leaks, electrical and HVAC malfunctions, plumbing leaks, irrigation issues, community pool and amenity defects, and more. With our extensive experience in handling construction defect cases, we understand the complexities of these matters and are well-equipped to identify and address the specific defects affecting your community.

Building a Strong Case

Building a strong case requires comprehensive documentation and a thorough understanding of the legal framework at play. Our attorneys will guide you through the process, meticulously gathering evidence, such as photographs, videos, communication records, contracts, warranties, and inspection reports. By establishing a solid foundation for your claims, we bolster homeowners’ chances of obtaining the compensation they deserve. Always consult with your attorney prior to initiating any repairs, even if temporary, because of the legal implications that can arise.

Navigating Warranty Coverage and Claim Limitations

In Florida, most homeowners benefit from limited warranties provided by builders. Our legal team has an in-depth understanding of these warranties and the applicable statute of limitations and statute of repose. In 2023, the Florida Legislature passed and Governor DeSantis signed into law SB 360, which reduces the statute of repose from 10 years to 7 years for latent defects and alters which events cause the repose period to begin to run. We will analyze the terms of your warranty, diligently identify any potential breaches, and ensure your claims are filed within the proper timeframe.

Construction Defect Claims Process

  1. Comprehensive Consultation
    At Becker, we offer a free initial consultation to assess the viability of your case. Our attorneys will listen to your concerns, review relevant documentation, and provide a clear explanation of your legal options. We strive to establish a trusting and candid attorney-client relationship from first contact.
  2. Fee Structures Tailored for Your Needs
    Becker offers both hourly and contingency fee arrangements depending on our client’s preference. With a contingency fee arrangement, the client pays nothing up-front, and we simply take a percentage of the final recovery. This means that with a contingency fee arrangement, you only pay if we win a recovery in your favor.
  3. Thorough Notice Preparation
    Our skilled attorneys will prepare a detailed and legally sound notice to the builder or developer, highlighting the specific defects and demanding appropriate remedies or compensation. We ensure compliance with contractual and Florida statutory requirements, guaranteeing your rights are protected throughout the process.
  4. Effective Dispute Resolution
    We recognize that lengthy litigation is not always the ideal solution. Our attorneys will explore alternative dispute resolution methods, such as mediation or arbitration, to facilitate a swift and cost-effective resolution. Through strategic negotiation, we aim to reach a favorable outcome that aligns with homeowners’ best interests.
  5. Aggressive Litigation
    If alternative dispute resolution proves unsuccessful, our firm is prepared to vigorously litigate your case. We will meticulously prepare all necessary legal filings, including a compelling Complaint outlining the defects and the damages sought. Our attorneys will navigate the litigation process with precision, ensuring your rights are vigorously defended and your townhome, condo or new construction home defect issues are presented clearly and convincingly to the Court.
  6.  Expert Witness Support
    Our network of expert witnesses, including architects, engineers, contractors, and other professionals, is invaluable in strengthening your case. We collaborate with these experts to provide objective evaluations, present professional opinions, and bolster the strength of your construction defect claims.

When construction defects threaten the value and livability of your new townhome, condo or single-family home in Central Florida, you need a trusted legal partner by your side. At Becker, our skilled attorneys specialize in construction defect litigation, offering personalized attention, expert guidance, and aggressive advocacy to protect your rights and secure the compensation you deserve to make your home feel like home.

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Jake Herrel is an attorney in Becker’s Business Litigation and Construction Law & Litigation practices in the Orlando office. He represents and guides clients through all stages of litigation from the inception of suit through trial, including drafting pleadings and motions, performing discovery, taking and defending depositions, arguing motions, negotiating settlement agreements, and conducting extensive research and analysis on complex procedural and substantive legal issues. Mr. Herrel specializes in serving as a strategic advisor and problem solver in decisive moments for his clients.