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We bought a new house built by Syncon Homes in Nevada. They advertised their company as "building superior homes" with a "commitment to quality" and having a "passion for customer care." They promised that they "do everything possible to ensure high quality and lasting value." They also promised that they are "committed to delivering the highest quality homes" and that they "are a leader in building quality homes, outstanding communities, profitable returns and positive relationships with our homebuyers."
We were excited about the prospect of owning a "quality" and "superior" house in our final years. We looked forward to it being a home that would be the last one we would ever live in. However, it has turned out to be something completely different. It turned into a nightmare for us.
One of our first problems that began to reveal Syncon Homes' lack of quality construction had to do with a water pipe that wasn't connected in the house. Syncon Homes sent personnel out to try to find it, but they were unsuccessful. They guessed the end was buried within the concrete foundation.
However, during the search for the water pipe, another hidden defect was discovered. Insulation was missing from the wall behind the secondary bath. Although the wall is 10+ feet tall, they "fixed" the problem by trying to stuff insulation into the vacant cavity with a 3' stick from the 2' tall opening they had made in the bottom of the wall. That was the extent of their repair.
The consequences of their workmanship showed up shortly thereafter. The secondary bath shower froze solid in December 2007. It was the area where the missing insulation had been discovered and had been inappropriately repaired.
The builder had to see the problem, so when it occured again, they sent their representative to the house. Although he saw the water failing to flow, he tried to deny that the problem existed. Then, he said "it's normal for pipes to freeze in Nevada."
To make a long story short, we didn't accept his statement as truth, so we brought the new problem to his supervisor in writing. Although the problem continued to happen throughout the 2007/2008 winter, Syncon Homes failed to fix the problem. They made us live with a shower that froze solid all winter, exposing us to the very likely chance that the pipe would break, spray water into our walls, and compound the problem.
We later learned that the location of the shower pipe was a clear violation of the building codes in the county. It's quite clear where it says that water pipes are not to be installed in exterior walls, yet Syncon Homes failed to comply with the building code.
Syncon Homes failed to initiate any attempts to fix the freezing shower line until 7 1/2 months later. We had to file a construction defect action in order to get them to attempt the repair. At that time, they blew insulation into the empty wall cavity behind the shower. It was the same wall cavity where the insualtion had been discovered as missing before the winter season began.
Why couldn't they have done this 7 1/2 months earlier?
Yet, the freezing shower pipe defect remained unrepaired. It showed it's ugly head again in this winter, in December 2008, when the shower again froze. It remains an unresolved problem that obviously exists because the basic building code was not followed by Syncon Homes.
This was point that we began to look much deeper into the problems that were beginning to show in our house. We were starting to find cracks in the foundation, cracks opening in the stucco-type siding, and other water pipes that started to freeze solid. We also found roof ventilation that was undersized for the structure and areas of the attic that were segregated without any source of ventilation.
Without going into great depth, we eventually discovered other serious violations of the building codes and the county-approved building plans. For example, necessary and required structural components were left out of the house, the installation instructions for the siding were not followed, Syncon Homes did not comply with the code requirements for structural & equipment installations, and the building plans were modified without getting them reviewed and approved by the county as required.
Overall, it has resulted in many structural deficiencies, code violations, and construction defects that have been professionally categorized as:
1) Life Hazards
2) Safety Hazards
3) Fire Hazards
They have left us with a property that in no way meets the standards Syncon Homes independently established and promised to us. They have also left us with a house that does not meet the minimum standards of habitability as established by the building codes, which now endangers our health, safety and welfare.
In effect, they have tried to force us to accept responsibility and liability for their lack of good workmanship and violations of the laws (codes) designed to protect the public. It's a situation that we not only find unsatisfactory, but also despicable and unconsciousable.
If you'd like to find out more about the house that Syncon Homes built for us, please visit our website. We present more thorough information about our situation and Syncon Homes' subsequent actions. We also have some videos available for viewing that show a few of the defects we've discussed. Our website can be reached at: http://www.asynconhome.info
If you'd like access directly to the videos, they can be reached at: http://www.youtube.com/user/asynconhome
Our Defective Syncon Home
Minden, Nevada U.S.A.