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When drawing up plans to construct a new home, termite-proof materials may help in reducing the chance of an infestation. Contractors offering new structures made of stainless steel, metal or chemically treated lumber, however, must deliver on assurances of keeping pests away.

Professional builders owe a duty of care to prevent termite infestation and other post-construction issues. Treating soil with chemicals before the start of a construction project may help ensure a termite-free environment. Designing a home with sufficient crawlspace and ventilation prevents the formation of dead air pockets, which attracts termites. If construction violations or defects result in a pest infestation or other problems, a property owner has a right to seek a remedy.

Moving into a new home free of defects

Conducting a thorough inspection of a new home or building helps to bring to light any defects before moving in. A builder who fails to fix a noticeable construction error or visible mistake may face liability for damages when a pest infestation or other problem occurs. The resulting repairs can be costly. Property damage from termites and insects, for example, exceeds $5 billion each year, as reported by the Alabama A&M University Extension.

Termites found burrowing in wood or underneath a structure require specialized care and treatment. A professional contractor, however, should have taken steps to prevent attracting termites during the construction process. A negligent builder’s construction defect could result in a moisture buildup or an air pocket that attracts pests.

Filing a legal claim for relief after taking occupancy

A construction defect in a new home may not become apparent until after an owner takes occupancy. It may take a few years for water leaks, infestations or soil subsidence issues to show. When such defects cause harm to a house or building, a legal action may provide compensation for the resulting harm or damages. Alabama law allows owners to file a lawsuit alleging a construction defect within two years of its discovery or seven years from a completion date.