Top 3 Florida Home Building Concerns

New homeowners in Florida (although not uncommon throughout the country) often say they have issues getting home defects and previous construction problems corrected in a timely manner. Attorneys say that big builders are often in too much of a hurry and home owners end up suffering in the long run. But let’s focus on the “big three”.

ABC Action News has teamed up with ABC’s Brian Ross Investigative Unit as part of a nationwide investigation called “New Home Heartbreak”. View the Florida-based home building story here.

Water Water Everywhere But Not a Drop to Drink…

As my father-in-law used to say, “Water, water, never fire!” Yes, water is often a nightmare to deal with when it comes to not only coastal flooding but also plumbing leaks, fractured or broken pipes and the list goes on and on. When it comes to flooding around or risks near your home, as is often the case in Florida, there are methods to try and protect your home as well as minimize the effects of the flooding when and if, it happens. Always best to discuss with an experienced residential contractor while also working with a design build firm, such as Xavier Builders, as the optimal solutions integrate a team-solving approach that includes architects, contractors, designers and landscaper professionals.

When it comes to the “pipes” within the walls as well as outside of your home that may be PVC, copper or even cast iron or galvanized steel, just because they look fine on the surface, that doesn’t mean they’re stable and reliable. Most of these materials have been replaced with modern plastics in modern times, but millions of homes still have the old pipe systems with these older materials and one day they will have to be replaced due to failure or potential failure. With new technology also comes much better water sensors and many of those devices can be tied to a home alarm system and automatically text you when they sense water or trigger their service to call you when an alert sets off. Keep in mind as well that water lines to and from your washer, to your ice maker and other appliances, including the “scary” hot water heaters, that have flooded many a basement.

Lastly, when it comes to water, don’t forget gutters and drainage. Many installers don’t think creatively AT ALL! At Xavier Builders, we often change the drainage plan and restructure the gutters so that water is moved away from our clients’ homes plus moved farther way from the house at the exit points — and that approach makes a major difference in terms of keeping water away from their homes even during tropical storms and hurricanes.

#2: Hurricanes, Wind, Rain and Debris

If you live in Florida, you know when hurricane season starts and ends. You have an evacuation plan in place and possibly even extra cases of bottled water and canned food in the basement. People up north (including home builders) rarely know what it’s like to live in this type of harsh-weather-risk environment. They think it’s simply the windows and foundation but the risks are so much greater than simply those items. Again, working with a builder that thinks outside the box and doesn’t contract to build the same old way and with the same old materials, is key to any new home building project, including home renovations.

#3: Code Compliance & Everything Else

This is more of a catch-all building concern but one never to be taken lightly. For example, when in Key West or other Keys in Florida, getting access to construction materials and services can be a daunting task (and comes with big ticket price tags). Yes, Florida has building code requirements and when building in Tallahassee or Key West, your builder should be looking to often surpass those requirements and build for surviving the dreaded category 5 hurricane. Having your home survive a hurricane also isn’t just about surviving it during the actual weather event, but also how it handles the aftermath.

Based on where in Florida your home building project is located, all aspects of your project must be assessed, options considered, and plans created all before one drop of cement is poured or the first nail is driven.