Tenant Tip – Check for Damaged Windows Before Construction or Pay Later

windowMy general contractor on a 52,000 sq ft tenant build out received the following post-construction email from the landlord: “Please be informed that we are going to repair the (10) windows that were damaged during construction. All repair costs are going to be passed on to the tenant.

That was certainly a surprise. We discovered the GC hadn’t performed a physical inspection of the 140 windows of this prominent NYC high-rise office building, Though the GC argued the windows were damaged prior to mobilization, the landlord answered back the space was demo’d and turned over with all windows in working order.

Unfortunately for the GC, they didn’t have the proof necessary to argue their case nor did the construction progress photos reveal any visual proof of prior damage.  The 6’w x 8’h double hung/Tilt-wash/Turn/Swing windows are expensive so the repair tab will be pretty steep.

Depending on your lease and/or GC agreement, this could easily be passed on to the tenant. Luckily, my client (tenant) is protected through our contract and the costs will be back charged to the GC.

Lesson learned: Check window operability and report all defects before start of construction or you may get a hefty bill from the landlord when construction ends.

2 Comments on Tenant Tip – Check for Damaged Windows Before Construction or Pay Later

  1. I agree with theBrokerList. CYA is unfortunately more and more neccessary these days. I always walk through any building before I start a job and take pics with my phone. Haven’t needed them yet for CYA (knock on wood), but I have actually used them a couple times to refer back to for various things. Good reminder.

  2. Richard, Yes, inspections, before, after and when appropriate are the best CYA you can have. Great point and concept in all cases to keep in mind.

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