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Company rebuilt my porch and balcony but I have a roof issue... Help!

Company rebuilt my porch and balcony but I have a roof issue... Help!

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  #1  
Old 10-10-14, 09:35 AM
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Company rebuilt my porch and balcony but I have a roof issue... Help!

I had my porch and balcony rebuilt. It was supposed to be a 10 day project by a company that is now on week 4 and were not done yet. I am not happy with their work but they ended up bitting off more than they could chew. I am going to ignore the porch issues on this thread and just focus on the roof.

The 2 guys that did the work weren't great. They had all the right ideas but just did remeasure or re-level things and it shows. The roof was put on with exterior OSB or underflooring and I assume that's right. But there is NO PITCH! They said that when they put the roof up, they used a level and made the bubble just touch the line and that was their gauge. I said that it should be 1/4" per 12 at the minimum but they said no.

Well now the roofers come out from the company and decide to use commercial grade white roof with torches. I don't know what kind but he said for the size roof (12x8) that it was only $20 more and worth it. I didn't know it was white until it was up. Being white doesn't matter to me in this case but the pitch does.

Now when it rains I just get puddles. There is a big puddle right outside my door which stops me from even walking out. I don't plan on using this balcony much if at all but I don't want water in pools just sitting there. Its going to get green and nasty looking, especially because its white. Its only been a week in the pics below and you can see what it looks like. I have birds just sitting outside bathing on my roof!

They did install gutters but I don't see what the gutters are doing. First of all there is no overhang on the roof. The gutter just are attached to the header board and the roof falls off at a 90* angle on the header. I don't know if this is right or wrong but my old roof had an overhang to the gutters.

Now they had to order the railings. I am trying to avoid more issues and make sure this roof is right before they install railings and then maybe have to take them down and do it over. They are telling me its right but nobody has looked up there since it was installed.


Summary:

-No pitch on balcony. The balcony is 8x12 and is off the upstairs master
-roof doesn't overhang the gutters
-water is pooling. I can dumb a bucket of water on the roof and it just sits.
-I used a pitch tool and it measured less than 1* if anything at all.
-white roof, is this right?
-Pics show but I think it is worse than the pics show. Roof is 1 week old and it rained 3 days ago! Water has been like this since.



Any help would be appreciated.
 
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  #2  
Old 10-10-14, 09:42 AM
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Old 10-10-14, 10:18 AM
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I know very little about roof decks but agree there should be enough pitch for the water to run off. I'd call the roofer and get his input, he may say he just covers what's there but press him on how it should have been done. You can then take that info to your contractor. Remember your biggest bargaining chip is your check book. Not paying until the work is done correctly usually gets their attention. Keep expressing your concerns to the contractor!
 
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Old 10-10-14, 11:10 AM
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Might want to get estimates from a couple of of other roofers on the cost to fix the problem. Don't like to encourage deceit but in this case I'd omit the fact that you are having the roof and patio built. Just say you have a problem and don't elaborate. Get written proposals stating what will need to be corrected and cost. Present those to your GC.
 
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Old 10-10-14, 11:17 AM
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The porch is under construction. It would be obvious and I don't like doing that. I guess I could pay for a roof inspection but that seems crazy in this case. Id hate to have to pay more to someone else with the current job not done.

I don't know if they would listen anyways. I assume this has to get inspected. I wonder what happens then. Would this pass?
 
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Old 10-10-14, 11:25 AM
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I assume this has to get inspected.
Has a permit been pulled?
 
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Old 10-10-14, 11:31 AM
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A permit is supposed to be pulled but I haven't seen anything and never signed anything. They told me they were pulling permits. They are also telling me that an inspector will come when they are done. I haven't seen any paperwork or permits yet though.
 
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Old 10-10-14, 11:42 AM
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Might be worth a trip to the local AHJ to make sure....
 
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Old 10-10-14, 11:54 AM
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Can I get in trouble if they didn't pull one but we're supposed to?
 
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Old 10-10-14, 12:36 PM
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No.. The permit is for your protection. Go to your local authority and find out. If no permit they will come out and red sticker the job until one is pulled..

Then you can bring the issues you are having up with the inspector..

I assume dont waste your breath with the contractor anymore. There comes a time when you need to go over their heads...

My attached shed roof like yours was constructed with pitch.. Not enough pitch for shingles but a black rubber was used... Was all glued....
 
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Old 10-10-14, 12:36 PM
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Yep - it's ultimately your responsibility. That said, walking in now and saying you're having some concerns and want to make sure the contractor is doing all he's supposed to will go a long way toward getting the inspector on your side.
 
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Old 10-10-14, 12:59 PM
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Just went to the city, no permit pulled but they know the company well and say he usually does things he should.

He keeps telling me that there will be an inspection hit the city says they can't w no permit.


At the city hall its posted saying that homeowners should not pull permits for contractors. I thought that was interesting.

If it gets "red stickered" doesn't that just put me in the bad spot? Now I would be stuck w all these issues (if there are more)? I paid 50% upfront and that's all. Would the contractor be responsible to fix everything? You say just part ways but I don't think that I can.
 

Last edited by cap217; 10-10-14 at 01:28 PM.
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Old 10-10-14, 02:01 PM
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If it gets "red stickered" doesn't that just put me in the bad spot? Now I would be stuck w all these issues (if there are more)? I paid 50% upfront and that's all. Would the contractor be responsible to fix everything? You say just part ways but I don't think that I can.
No it dont put you in a bad spot, it puts the contractor in a bad spot.. You will not be stuck with the issues if the inspector fails the roof pitch and such. The contractor will need to fix it... And if he dont then you take him to small claims court to recoup your money, and hire someone else.

You dont have to part ways if they are stand up guys, but you never know what can happen... They may just take the 50% you paid and walk away.. Thinking you may never persue the issues..

Best to stop work now then when its finished..

Wait for some of the carpenters to respond. Im just a plumber...Hopefully chandler will pop in and comment...
 
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Old 10-10-14, 03:15 PM
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The city called back and it was an inspector. He seemed like he was protecting the contractor in a way saying stuff like "We have to wait until next week and I have to see the drawings" when we both know there are no drawings. He also said that he cant run a computer well and doesn't know how to search for permits. Whatever....

He said he would call back Tuesday if he could. I asked if the project should stop because of no permit and he said no!!!!! I need to find a way to hold off until an inspector comes. I should have had a framing inspection and all of that done but never did.

I am very confused now. I thought the city would be all over this but they don't seem to be. I am in a larger city (80,000) residents and I was told that they are very strict about permits from other contractors.

Every contractor I hired has screwed me. Just add this to the list. And no I didn't go with the cheapest. I paid more for a company with a good reputation.

The inspector did say that there is no pitch required if the proper roof is used. Only code is 2 per 12 for shingles. I had a roofer come out and he said he would used EPMD (I think) and they used TPO. He said it was for restaurants and oil and build up. Where its flashed, it just curves up. Seems like it could just tear. The roof moves, bounces. Its not stuck to the wood in all places.
 
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Old 10-10-14, 03:56 PM
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Here is a quick video

Tpo roof on balcony - YouTube
 
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Old 10-10-14, 04:56 PM
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What happened to the rafter spacing between #2 and #3 from the camera end? Why are there scabs on the rafters? Could they just not count to 16 more than once? : eek:

I can't comment on the torch down method, but I do know framing, and they wouldn't pass a Lego test in my book.
 
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Old 10-11-14, 10:34 AM
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The owner of the company came today and said that he had a problem with me going to the city!!! They told him that I came up and was running my mouth and had an attitude. This couldn't be further from the truth! So it turns out that the crew there and the engineer and the inspectors are all in it together in some way.

Anyways, he came and looked at the roof and said it wasn't right and he wasn't happy. So it might all turn out ok.

I told him that I don't run my mouth and that I don't want to get anyone in trouble. Crazy politics!
 
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Old 10-11-14, 12:37 PM
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Things often get exaggerated on all sides and even if the GC and inspector are buddies, that doesn't explain the lack of permits being pulled. Hopefully the GC will make it right.
 
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Old 11-03-14, 10:23 PM
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I have given them more than enough time but all I get is "We will be there tomorrow" and nobody shows up. I need to get this fixed so I guess I have to consider them fired. We are on day 53 of a 10 day project (stated in contract).
 
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Old 11-04-14, 05:48 AM
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If you ever try to sell this house and a home inspector looks at that porch and finds other construction defects the first thing you will be asked is where are the permits for it. You need to make sure that gets taken care of.
 
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Old 11-04-14, 07:27 AM
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Did they cash the 50% check? Stop payment or reverse charges if paid on credit card...

Go back to the town. Possibly they will fine the contractor...

Let us know what happens...
 
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Old 01-26-15, 06:13 PM
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Long time since I have written anything but its time for an update...

The city has given until Feb 8th for drawings to be submitted (proper and detailed ones that match their previous request). If they are not then they will issue a ticket and summons. He can continue to work on other projects while in court over mine.

Last week I contacted AMEX and did a dispute and they took the money from the contractor. Today I got a call saying that I am in breach of contract bc I took the down payment back. He told me that he is doing everything the right way and submitting to the city as requested. I went to the city and talked to the inspector and the head plan review guy and they haven't heard anything from him. The contractor says that the artichect is working with the city.

While talking to the inspector and the guy who reviews and signs off on the plans, I explained how they lagged the support to the house. They said that it COULD NOT be LAGGED INTO BRICK. I showed them a picture and they said it was wrong. I also said that my porch pitches to the house and they said that was wrong. They told me that unless they can get an engineer to explain that how they did it is correct, it will have to be redone.

I then went back to the contractors office to meet. He wants the downpayment back and said that if I don't give it to him, he will sue and do a mechanics lean and it will be tied in in court for months. I told him I would wait on the paperwork that he says was submitted to the city with the engineers stamp before I give the money back.

I am stuck in a hard spot here. He has to pull the permit and bring everything up to code and get inspected and passed. I cant hire another contractor, he has to do it. If he doesn't, he gets finned but that doesn't help me. I am trying to find out what to do here. I have no clue!!!




Question:

From the pics, is this supported to the house the proper way? Can it be done this way? The only support is from the headers lagged to the ceiling and the flooring AND the two 4x4 posts on the corners. All the other 2x4 are for framing in screens, not support.
 
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Old 01-26-15, 07:26 PM
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I explained how they lagged the support to the house. They said that it COULD NOT be LAGGED INTO BRICK.
The inspector has already answered your question.
 
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Old 01-26-15, 09:18 PM
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I wish it was that easy. They are telling me "off the record" but until the get the drawings and inspect it, I don't have an answer.

And why I am asking is because I see online that this is how you do it. Here is an example:

Headers | Attach Your Deck to the House | DIY Deck Plans
 
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Old 01-27-15, 04:08 AM
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You cannot lag anything into a brick veneer. Brick have no structural support. The site was in error posting something like that. If I haven't already referred you to it, here it is again. A definitive site that will tell you how to attach things. http://www.awc.org/Publications/DCA/DCA6/DCA6-09.pdf

See page 16, section 12.
 
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Old 01-27-15, 08:44 AM
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Just so you guys understand what my worry is.

1-The obvious issues with the contractor
2-The city is requiring that he has to pull the permits, submit drawings, get the engineers stamp of approval, and get the inspection.
3-90% of the work is done and covered up.
4-I don't want the inspector (city) to overlook or not notice something because it is covered up. I want to show him what they did and how they did it so he doesn't miss it.



Here is what it looked like when they tore down the porch. My old porch had wood (joists) coming from inside the house and all they did was cut them off. They then used a 2x8 and lagged in into the brick on the top (roof) and bottom (porch). Then used 4x4 posts over the existing brick footers (they added a couple bricks). Then framed in and ran joists.


Here are pics:















If you click on them, they should get larger.
 
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Old 01-27-15, 08:57 AM
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My post below shows the pictures and this on takes some screen shots of the info Chandler gave me. After reading this, I am very worried and wonder how this can ever be fixed.

It shows the prohibited way of installing a ledger board and this is exactly what they did. It shows how you are supposed to connect to the floor joists which they cut. But I have a question:

In the 2nd pic below it shows that you can connect with a ledger board to brick for support of a free standing porch/deck. Can this work in my situation? I assume there would need to be 2 more footers and posts near the house for this to work. Also, would that matter because I have a balcony as well?



EDIT:

I just talked to the contractor and asked him about this and this was his reply:

The old wood only went in 6" he thought and they were not floor joists (I don't know if this is true or not). He said that he used RED HEAD LAG ANCHORS that can be used to attach a ledger board to brick and support.


Is this true?








 
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Old 01-27-15, 09:28 PM
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First off, I feel for you - nothing like getting taken for a ride by a contractor.

Why can't you just schedule a pre-finished work inspection? The last time I had a construction permit pulled, there were at least three inspections. One when the work started, one or two in the middle, and a final. Usually you don't want to pull a permit for your GC, because that makes YOU the GC in the eyes of the law - meaning any mess ups will be your fault and responsibility to fix. I suppose your jurisdiction could be different, but that's usually the reason you don't pull your own if you are hiring a GC. BTW, does your contract with the GC stipulate that he will pull the permits?

I'm not a lawyer, but in my eyes, your GC has no legal leg to stand on if he's not following the permitting process. And I highly doubt he ever planned on pulling one until you forced the issue.

What does your contract with the GC say about the roof? Does it specify any details about flat vs. pitched? If the contract is open-ended and code allows for it you might be stuck with the flat roof - but the inspector should at least make sure the TPO is done right.

Good luck, hopefully you can work out a deal and avoid a legal mess.
 
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Old 01-28-15, 08:23 AM
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I cant schedule anything because a permit has not been pulled and there is technically nothing to inspect without a permit. The catch is that he must pull the permit and only him. He took responsibility of the work and the city knows that he did work without a permit.

He cant get the permit until he submits drawing and an engineers approval (not sure if approval is the right word).

The contract does not state that he will pull a permit but in our first meeting he said he pulls permits, does work in the city, showed me his license and bond information. I couldn't pull the permit myself if I wanted and I cant hire anyone else.


I am afraid that he messed up by cutting the floor joists and now I am not sure how a porch can be built with a balcony.
 
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Old 03-09-15, 06:56 PM
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I talked to my lawyer and artichect today and its official... I am screwed!

When he cut the joists he basically screwed me. To "properly" secure the new ledger and joists for the porch and balcony someone has to open up the outside brick and go in my house and cut my ceilings to secure to the joists. They have to do this in my finished basement ceiling and in my living room ceiling that is original 1930s never touched! I am more than mad about this.

There is a list of stuff that he didn't do properly.

-It is not properly lagged into the house. It will possibly need to be lagged into joists and to do that the outside brick will need to be opened up AND my ceiling needs to be opened up in the basement and the first floor.
-The headers are not properly lagged into the 4x4 posts. It is not structurally secure.
-The framing needs to be doubled and it is currently single.
-The header boards are not properly lagged to the brick/concrete footers. It is actually being supported by the brick and not the concrete.
-The framing is not acceptable and will not hold the load. It currently only has 2 barring points (4x4 posts) on a 12' span and it needs to have more support. Also, a 2x8 is not acceptable for a 12' span.
-The stairs do not have the proper base/barring points and need a 4" concrete pad.
-Railings cannot be installed with how the structure is currently built. This is because there is nowhere for the posts to be installed except for the 2-4x4 posts. Also because of the way those posts are improperly installed, it is not an acceptable place for a railing.
-The quality of work and the crooked and uneven parts.



I talked to and filed on his bond and they said that I win and can get my money back but I need a lot extra to be "made whole". They said that they couldn't get a hold of the contractor for weeks and finally got a number where he answered. But when he did answer, they said who they were and mentioned my name and then HUNG UP! This is such a mess. This guy shouldn't be in business.
 
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Old 03-10-15, 05:56 AM
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Hopefully the action you've taken will prevent that 'contractor' from doing someone else wrong.
Does he have any assets? Your lawyer should know the viability of suing him for the rest.

hope things work out in a timely manner for you so this can just be a bad memory
 
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Old 03-10-15, 07:04 AM
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He doesn't have anything. He is being sued by other homeowners, suppliers, contractors, and the IRS.
 
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Old 03-10-15, 06:07 PM
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With the IRS involved, you are sucking the bottom of the tea glass. Too bad he wasn't genuine enough to hold up his end of the bargain.
 
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