Homes with Crumbling Foundations in Connecticut
Problems that have been going on for 20 years… crumbling foundations. According to the report by NBC Connecticut ,these homes are built by the contractor JJ Motes.
Now, that the news about the Crumbling Foundation is out there and a staggering number of homes are potentially exposed to this issue, the question that has been raised is how should a Realtor handle the information on hand when acting as a buyer’s agent.
Should we just point them to the site where the Department of Consumer Protection issued a press release and brochure to alert the consumers about the existence of crumbling foundations in Connecticut?
Should we go to the town hall and check the building department’s records? Would this inquisition appease our buyer’s concern if we can’t find JJ Mottes in the file? What if it is not filed or it is just not there? That does not automatically mean that JJ Mottes did not pour the concrete foundation.
Some of the homes built in the 80s and 90s are now plagued by cracks in alarming size, patterns and directions. Younger homes have yet to wait to see cracks after several more years.
As a Buyer’s Agent, these are the things I will do:
- Exercise Reasonable Care and Due Diligence. Check town records. Ask neighbors. Be a nosy Realtor.
- Provide the buyers copy of the brochure that was released by the department.
- Avoid exaggeration or misrepresentation. I will not act as a home inspector or structural engineer when I see cracks in the foundation.
- Furnish the Buyers the advisory issued by the Connecticut Association of Realtors.
As Buyers, what should you do?
- Hire the right Realtor
- Exercise Reasonable Care and Due Diligence. Do your own research
- Don’t panic. Not all homes are built by the contractor named in the news report.
- Hire a structural engineer and ask for his expertise. Ask if porous test is advisable if cracks are not visible.
As Sellers, what should you do?
- Find out who the builder was with the building department where the property is located
- Try to get information from the builder which company was used for the foundation
- Hire a structural engineer and inquire if porous test is advisable.
- DCP recommended the following:
- Talk with a professional engineer about testing the concrete in your home for damage, and their recommended next steps for repair.
- You can verify that your professional engineer is licensed, and your home improvement contractor is registered at www.elicense.ct.gov.
- Contact the Connecticut Insurance Department to work through any insurance related questions or complaints.
- If you have other questions or need support, please contact the Department of Consumer Protection at email@example.com.
To fix crumbling foundations may cost up to hundreds of thousands of dollars. However, this should not create panic among the buyers and sellers as this will only exponentially dampen the housing market. Keep educated and stay informed.
I will update this blog for any development.
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