What HOAs need to know about construction defects in Maryland

On Behalf of | Aug 10, 2021 | Blog, Community Association Law

It can be hard to tell what maintenance issues are the responsibility of the individual homeowner to fix and what’s the homeowner association’s responsibility. Construction defects are one of the gray areas where responsibility isn’t automatically known.

Construction defect is a term used to describe a fault with the design or construction of a building or property. At best, construction defects can be a nuisance. But at their worst, construction defects can lead to severe damage down the line. That’s why it’s so important to know who’s responsible for repairs.

When are construction defects the HOA’s responsibility?

Construction defects are the responsibility of the HOA to fix when they relate to the exterior of a home. Most associations are charged with maintenance and control over the exterior of homes since they require that home exteriors look a certain way.

If there’s a construction issue relating to the exterior of a home, it’s likely up to the HOA to fix it since the HOA is the one setting that standard. This is especially true if the construction defect isn’t the fault of an individual homeowner.

When a construction defect impacts multiple homeowners within the community, the HOA is definitely responsible. If you manage the HOA, there are several things that you can do to address the defect.

How to deal with construction defects

If you believe that there are construction defects, you’ll have to start an investigation to make sure that there are no larger problems as a result. An investigation will also help you get the contractor back to fix all of the issues and reimburse some of the major costs. However, the investigation will need to prove that it’s actually a construction defect and not a separate issue.

For that to happen, you’ll want to keep evidence of all the problems you believe to be a result of the defect. You might also consider reaching out to a lawyer in order to help keep track of all of the issues and handle communication between the HOA, the residents and the construction crew.