Friday, May 25, 2007

Dear Potential Buyers of New Salemtown Homes That Have Brick Veneer Added Later Than First Intended

Dear Potential Salemtown Home Buyers:

As you are looking at those trendy homes with the hip, unique shape that you do not see in other builds (some designers tell me that there is a structural reason why homes aren't built that way, but I digress), especially those that have brick veneer added as a second thought, be sure you have your hired inspector (and you should hire one) check that brick veneer outside and the foundation in the crawl space.

According to the Nashville Scene's home inspection columnist, Walter Jowers, a mistake commonly made in brick veneer jobs is the failure to install flashings and weep holes to prevent moisture build-up behind the foundation. Now many of us get all warm inside at the mere site of masonry, but brick veneer becomes a liability to your investment if it is blocking moisture under the foundation.

Weep holes cannot be added after a townhouse is built nor can they be drilled after the brick veneer (which may block weep holes) is installed. According to Jowers, you should not trust that the developer or the builder even knows these details, much less that they will take care of you. And, apparently, local codes inspectors do not do a very thorough job in order to warn you.

Buyer beware, and since Salemtown does not have strict zoning overlays, buyer be-paying-an-inspector-to-go-over-the-house-with-a-fine-toothed-comb. While developers may be promising to make your life better, you need to pay someone to inspect and to guarantee that they are true to their word.


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