Real Estate Law

Have Real Estate Law Questions? Ask a Real Estate Lawyer.

Ask a Lawyer,
Get an Answer ASAP!

Real Estate Law
This answer was rated:

My wife and I are building a house and we are 25 days from

completion/closing. It was discovered...
My wife and I are building a house and we are 25 days from completion/closing. It was discovered within the past week that the house was not built to the floor plan. The owners suite and closet was supposed to be bumped out two feet to the rear, but was not. Since the house is nearly completed, the builder is stating that they are unable to make the change at this time and want to credit us the amount of the change to the floor plan. We feel that the build should be held more accountable than to just forfeit the money they would have earned if the completed the job properly and were wondering what our options are. We do not want to walk away from the house but we feel that we deserve some compensation for accepting a house other than we signed off on in the purchase agreement. I cannot find anything specific in the purchase agreement concerning what the remedy would be if the builder fails to satisfy all the obligations in the purchase agreement. But there is a clause for Arbitration, where any dispute, controversy or claim shall be settled by binding arbitration by the American Arbitration Association under that entities Construction Industry Arbitration Rules. I know that you have not read the contract, but in situations like this is arbitration usually the only course of action? And would we have grounds to sue to damages (for receiving a home other than we contracted for) beyond the price we were paying for the upgrade? Thanks in advance!
Show More
Show Less
Ask Your Own Real Estate Law Question
Answered in 11 minutes by:
11/12/2013
Roger
Roger, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 31,869
Experience: BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
Verified

Roger : Hi - my name is XXXXX XXXXX I'm a Real Estate litigation attorney. Thanks for your question. I'll be glad to assist.
Roger : If the contract calls for arbitration to resolve any disputes, then you would have to submit the claim to arbitration. Even if you were to sue in state court, the contractor would simply have to file a motion to compel arbitration and you'd be sent there by the judge.
Roger : As for damages, you would be able to sue for any damages associated with the breach. This could be a claim for the contract sum to be reduced since you didn't get what you contracted for, you could sue for the cost of replacement/repairing the problem, and you could seek any loss of value to the property (overall value) based on the error.
Roger : Arbitration is usually a good thing because it is cheaper and faster.
Customer:

Thanks Roger, that is that we thought concerning the arbitration. The cost of the "bump out" was $3,900. The builder is offering to remove that cost from the contract, since they did not build the house to the contract. When you say that we could sue for the cost of replacement/repairing the problem, could we potentially sue for the cost of adding the two feet to the house by another contractor after closing? A modification like that would be very costly. And obviously the value of the house is reduced since the house is 80 sq feet smaller.

Roger : Yes, you could sue for the cost to repair the error in order to make the house conform to the contract. And yes, you could hire a new contractor to do this.
Roger : You're not limited to the line item cost in the contract.
Roger : Instead, you are entitled to demand the cost of repair, which would obviously be more than what the original line item is.
Customer:

That is good to know. We have a meeting with the builder this week to discuss. Knowing that we are entitled to that gives us more confidence in speaking to him, now that we know we have a case for arbitration. Do you know how quick arbitration hearings usually take to get scheduled? If the builder cannot come to agreement with us and we do go to arbitration, should we close that that pending, or should the closing be delayed?

Roger : You can close, but you need to make clear that you dispute this issue and that you will pursue legal remedies regarding it. The best thing would be to meet with a local attorney BEFORE closing and make sure you do everything right before closing.
Roger : As for arbitration, they can move pretty fast - - from start to finish within a 6 month period is normal.
Customer:

Thank you Roger. That is very helpful.

Roger : No problem. Glad to assist.
Customer:

One additional question. If we go to arbitration and sue for the cost to repair the error to make the house conform to the contract. Are we then required to make the repairs?

Roger : Please let me know if you need anything further.
Roger : No. You can do whatever you want in the award UNLESS the arbitrator specifically orders this (which would be unusual).
Customer:

Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX been very helpful! Have a great day.

Roger : You're welcome. Thanks for allowing me to assist.
Roger
Roger, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 31,869
Experience: BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
Verified
Roger and 87 other Real Estate Law Specialists are ready to help you
Ask your own question now
Ask Roger Your Own Question
Roger
Roger
Roger, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 31,869
31,869 Satisfied Customers
Experience: BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters

Roger is online now

A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How JustAnswer works:

  • Ask an ExpertExperts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional AnswerVia email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction GuaranteeRate the answer you receive.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises!

Gary B.Edmond, OK

My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer.

EricRedwood City, CA

I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight.

MichaelWichita, KS

PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent.

Three H.Houston, TX

Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!!

ElaineAtlanta, GA

It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem.

TonyApopka, FL

Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help.

Mary C.Freshfield, Liverpool, UK

< Previous | Next >

Meet the Experts:

Tina

Tina

Lawyer

5,436 satisfied customers

17 years of legal experience including real estate law.

Barrister

Barrister

Lawyer

11,126 satisfied customers

17 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years

Infolawyer

Infolawyer

Lawyer

7,785 satisfied customers

Experienced lawyer

Ray

Ray

Lawyer

7,559 satisfied customers

Texas Attorney for 30 years dealing in real estate

LawTalk

LawTalk

Attorney

6,207 satisfied customers

I have 30 years legal experience. Additionally, in CA I held a Real Estate Broker's license.

Dimitry Esquire

Dimitry Esquire

Attorney

5,526 satisfied customers

JA Mentor, multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation & admin

Ely

Ely

Counselor at Law

4,925 satisfied customers

Qualified attorney in private practice including business, family, criminal, and real estate issues.

< Previous | Next >

Related Real Estate Law Questions
Got disconnected... In re: to my real estate questions, is
Got disconnected... In re: to my real estate questions, is this attorney a Texas attorney? … read more
Asad Rahman
Asad Rahman
Attorney
J.D.
2,286 satisfied customers
Is cold calling still legal for real estate agents?
is cold calling still legal for real estate agents? … read more
PaulmoJD
PaulmoJD
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
106 satisfied customers
My question is in regard to real estate in south Florida.
Hi! My question is in regard to real estate in south Florida … read more
Barrister
Barrister
Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
11,126 satisfied customers
I need a real estate attorney advise on cancellation of a
I need a real estate attorney advise on cancellation of a purchase agreement and release of deposit money in escrow. A brief summary of events are as below; 10/06/2017: Entered into Purchase Agreement… read more
Ray
Ray
Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
7,559 satisfied customers
Real Estate Question. In received notice to collect a debt
Real Estate Question. In received notice to collect a debt on a house in Monroe County, PA. I haven't lived in that house for at least three years (i co-signed to help my sister and her son) I was for… read more
Barrister
Barrister
Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
11,126 satisfied customers
This is a question to real estate lawyers ( TEXAS ). How
hello, this is a question to real estate lawyers ( TEXAS ). How much would you charge to review a demand letter?… read more
TaxAttorneytoHelp
TaxAttorneytoHelp
Owner
Doctoral Degree
2,542 satisfied customers
Time is of the essence" in a construction contract. what
quot;time is of the essence" in a construction contract. what damages can i collect if my only direct consequential loss was inconvenience? I was scheduled to relocate to my winter home Nov1; contract… read more
Asad Rahman
Asad Rahman
Attorney
J.D.
2,286 satisfied customers
I had work done to my home and the contractor damaged the
i had work done to my home and the contractor damaged the ceiling after it being totally reworked. they have not scheduled repair or have they acknowledged the damaged. I have been seeking a timely cl… read more
LegalGems
LegalGems
Juris Doctorate
10,647 satisfied customers
I was wondering if real estate property was held in a sole
I was wondering if real estate property was held in a sole prop and more real estate was aquired to fix up and then held as rentals would it be wise to split the sole prop into real estate and constru… read more
WiseOwl58
WiseOwl58
JD Honors Graduate
3,695 satisfied customers
I need a Real Estate attorney that specializes in contract
I need a Real Estate attorney that specializes in contract agreements between Brokers and their associate-agents. My broker mentioned that she wanted to re-do the commission split on a closed sale fro… read more
Lori
Lori
Juris Doctor
256 satisfied customers
I'm a real estate broker. i'd like to join CAR what's the
i'm a real estate broker. i'd like to join CAR https://www.car.org/ what's the least expensive way I can join that association?… read more
WiseOwl58
WiseOwl58
JD Honors Graduate
3,695 satisfied customers
What is the Colorado statute of limitations for real estate
Hello, what is the Colorado statute of limitations for real estate transaction pertaining to fraud, misrepresentation, omission, or deceit? … read more
LawGuy
LawGuy
Juris Doctor
123 satisfied customers
I need a real estate lawyer who knows real estate in Oregon
I need a real estate lawyer who knows real estate in Oregon I need a lawyer who specializes in real estate law in the state of Oregon. I am quitting my current property manager and I will be managing … read more
Irwin Law
Irwin Law
Juris Doctor JD
7,088 satisfied customers
In commercial Ohio real estate is their such an agreement as
In commercial Ohio real estate is their such an agreement as a NNN lease that is also a land contract installment which offers some type of equity ownership during or after the lease terms ?… read more
PaulmoJD
PaulmoJD
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
106 satisfied customers
Looking for a Real Estate Lawyer to come out and talk with
Looking for a Real Estate Lawyer to come out and talk with our community about HOA. The builder of our homes just turn over everything to the community with really explaining anything. We are look for… read more
PaulmoJD
PaulmoJD
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
106 satisfied customers
I have a real estate question related to Florida Real Estate
I have a real estate question related to Florida Real Estate law. … read more
LegalKnowledge
LegalKnowledge
Juris Doctor
28,100 satisfied customers
I'm not sure this is in the realm of real estate law or
I'm not sure this is in the realm of real estate law or property rights. In any event my neighbor has landscaping and one large pine tree that is continually shedding into my pool and surrounding pati… read more
LegalKnowledge
LegalKnowledge
Juris Doctor
28,100 satisfied customers
Real estate law I'm the seller i signed real estate contract
Real estate law I'm the seller i signed real estate contract now i dont want to sell I initialed the contract instead of signing the sale price was illegible so the seller sent an amendment for me to … read more
Damien Bosco
Damien Bosco
3,370 satisfied customers

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

Show MoreShow Less

Ask Your Question

x