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My wife and have been arguing with our builder since March…

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My wife and have been...
My wife and have been arguing with our builder since March to remedy the issue with our driveway. It is apparent to the people I have spoken with that the concrete used for our driveway is faulty. Of course, they state the damage is from road salt or something foreign we have applied.

We closed on the new home in September of 2009 and have followed their explicit instructions 'not to put anything on it for a year'. I noticed in March of 2010 it was flaking and pitting and have been given the run-around for 3 months now.

As I don't see it coming to a close due to their unwillingness to fix the issue, and we are uncertain of which way to proceed, I am looking at my options and hoped for your guidance in this matter.
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Real Estate Law
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6/29/2010
Real Estate Lawyer: DCrane Law, Lawyer replied 8 years ago
DCrane Law
DCrane Law, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 25,285
Experience: many years of experience representing clients in real estate matters
Verified
Thank you for the post, your recourse in this situation is to first have the driveway inspected by a blacktop/concrete person whom can provide a written assessment of the cause of the damage. Then send the builder a demand letter, attaching a copy of the written assessment as evidence of the builder's liability. In your demand, sent via certified mail, you would require the builder to resolve the issue within 15 days of receipt of the demand, noting the 3 months of dispute already passed, explaining that should the builder not comply your only recourse would be a small claims suit.
DCrane Law
DCrane Law, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 25,285
Experience: many years of experience representing clients in real estate matters
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
The builder is willing to pay the $1500 core test cost and is saying that if any salt is found, we would be liable for the test cost. My concern is this: we live in North Dakota and the streets are treated with road salt during the winter. Obviously, there will be some road salt found. Again, the unbiased parties in the industry are stating the mix is the cause, not salt, especially in the 6 months since the new home was built. Another concern is that the builder does business with the testing companies in the area. We have been told they have been out to assess the driveway, however, when my wife called them, they had no recollection in regards XXXXX XXXXX here. How do we know the results will be accurate and not skewed due to relationships? This is our dilemma. Do we have them go ahead with the testing is the question.
Real Estate Lawyer: DCrane Law, Lawyer replied 8 years ago
Hello, while you should go ahead with the testing, you should not do so under the guidelines established. A driveway in North Dakota should be constructed to withstand the climate, including winter and it is not unique for salt to be used to clear the pavement. Even if the salt is the culprit, the builder is still negligent for not laying a mixture suitable for the elements. Regardless of the outcome of the test, you still have a claim against the builder.
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