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Time to complete work disputes - builder delays

Building works can often take some time to complete. There are lots of different reasons why a building project can overrun, and it may be that the reasons need to be carefully considered before raising concerns to a building contractor. It may well be that other external factors beyond a building contractors’ control can cause issues with progressing the project.  Some examples could be due to inclement weather, difficulties sourcing materials, or variations to the contract during the course of the building works. This is not an exhaustive list.

When faced with concerns over the time it is taking for a building contractor to carry out and complete the works on a project it will be firstly necessary to consider the terms of the contract agreed between the parties.  There may well be terms within the contract which governs the issue of how long it will take to complete the project and may include provisions which deal with delays. 


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Dealing with building work delays

Dealing with delays can be problematic and stressful for homeowners.  The starting point is to ascertain whether there has been any agreed completion date incorporated into the contract.  If there has not been an agreed completion date, then there is an implied term that the works should be completed within a reasonable time.  The question of whether the building works are taking more than a reasonable time will be a question of fact depending on the circumstances of each case.

It may well be possible for a homeowner to make time of the essence during the course of the building works in the absence of an agreed contractual completion date.  However, taking such steps will need to be carefully thought out as if it is deemed that a homeowner is being unreasonable then this could have draconian consequences in the ability to claim damages if the relationship between the builder and the homeowner subsequently breaks down. 

If you are concerned over the delays on your building project, then it is important that you to take early independent legal advice prior to taking any steps. This will limit the risk of you prejudicing your position and ability to claim damages in the event the dispute ends up in legal proceedings.

If you think you may have a claim and wish to discuss it with us, please telephone our specialist team on 01616 966 229, or complete our online enquiry form and someone will respond to you as soon as possible. 

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