Your beautiful house is cracking? Soils or walls, you notice many cracks? Whether your home is new or old, remedies exist. But, you must implement the right remedy and within the allotted time. Let's look at these different remedies together.
Your new house is cracking
If your new house cracks, you have different options:
- The guarantee of perfect completion: As of the reception of works, during 1 year you can turn against the constructors if you notice cracks in the walls or the ground (Article 1792-6-2 of the Civil Code).
- The ten-year guarantee: Within 10 years after receiving the work you can bring an action against the builder if the cracks compromise the strength of the house or make it unfit for use. These cracks must have a certain gravity (Article 1792-4-1 of the Civil Code).
- Contractual liability for intermediate damages: Intermediate damage concerns all disorders that do not fall within the framework of the ten-year guarantee. Its prescription is 10 years. By cons, it is imperative to prove the fault of the manufacturer. (Article 1147 of the Civil Code).
- Damage insurance: When you have a house built or when you do important work (attic, construction of a garage, etc.) before the opening of work you must take out a damage insurance.
It takes effect at the end of the guarantee of perfect completion and lasts for the next 9 years. It covers, in fact, the disorders provided for by the decennial guarantee.
If cracks or any disorder appears on your construction, it is then your insurer who will take care of the expenses of repair. A charge for him, to turn against the manufacturer.
In any case, send a registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt to your builder or insurer explaining that your house is cracking. You can ask for either compensation or in-kind repair of the disorders.
If the amicable appeal fails, you will have to go to the competent court.
But beware, cracks that only affect the aesthetics of your home, will not be compensated.
Your old house is cracking
When cracks appear in an old house, the remedies depend on your situation: cracks appearing after the purchase of the house, work around your home or state of natural disaster.
- The guarantee of hidden defects: This guarantee applies when you buy a house. It concerns the defects that you did not know at the time of the purchase but which existed previously and which seriously affect your new home. Cracks that appear, while the seller has certified that the house is healthy and stable, can fit into this framework.
This warranty runs for 2 years from the appearance of cracks regardless of the date of purchase of your home.
- Recourse against your neighbors or the community: Work done by an individual or your community around your home can destabilize it and cause the appearance of cracks.
- Recourse with your insurer: As part of your homeowners insurance, your insurer can compensate you if the cracks have appeared following a state of natural disaster (drought, flood, landslide, etc.).
The state of natural disaster is decreed by prefectural decree. You then have 10 days from its publication in the official journal to declare your claim. If the cracks occur a few weeks after the climatic event that generated them, move closer to your town hall. Only your municipality can request recognition of the state of natural disaster. But this procedure can be long...
Always start with an amicable remedy with the sending of a registered mail with acknowledgment of receipt. But if your demands remain a dead letter, turn to the court to assert your rights. At this stage, calling on an expert will allow you to put all the chances on your side to claim compensation for your injury.