Is it true that some home builders now use video cameras to document the homebuilding process to prevent lawsuits?
In order to prevent'and prepare for'what has sadly become an influx of lawsuits in our society, many contractors and
home builders use video cameras to document the homebuilding process. It's become much more than simple paranoia; it's a necessary evil. And even homeowners have begun jumping on the "document everything" bandwagon.
Contractors and home builders use video cameras and still photography to film the homebuilding process from the ground up'from the insides of trenches where pipe and utilities are laid, to the placement of wall studs, load bearing walls and structural plywood. Yet the professionals aren't the only ones documenting the homebuilding process; homeowners themselves are also showing up on job sites with digital handhelds and video cameras, in order to make sure that their future home is being constructed soundly, safely and up to their specifications.
This is not to say, however, that photos and video are only taken as a preventative means'or even as a way to act as a sort of homebuilding 'big brother.' Some homeowners simply enjoy taking still pictures and video of the process to help them with interior decoration, exterior landscaping and future remodeling projects. There have even been instances in which photos and video of the homebuilding process has helped future contractors locate utility lines, wall studs or load bearing structural supports. The bottom line is that photos of one's home come in handy, not to mention make a nice storytelling project for a scrapbook or photo album.
In terms of dispute resolution, photography in all its forms is a great way in which to document an in-progress project. Videos are, of course, the most convenient, as voiceovers can be added to point out certain parts of the homebuilding stage, and they're easy to do. But litigation experts agree that still photos are what really matter; they are the one piece of evidence that can't be disputed.
Whether it's for a new home construction project or for a
remodel, homeowners, contractors and builders are wise to consider taking photographs of every stage of the project. Video is best used as an overall and general, interactive walk-through of various stages of the project, while still photography is still the best means for showcasing specific issues, as well as a timeline for the entire project. Some homeowners and contractors even take daily photos as standard practice.
This is all moot, however, if the photos aren't taken correctly. The key when taking photos for a construction project is to take close-up and detailed photos of everything that seems important throughout the homebuilding process'including structural details and utility placement. Your diligence will pay off later if you're presented with a future renovation, remodel or, (heaven forbid) a lawsuit.
You know what they say: A picture is worth a thousand words. In the case of homebuilding, remodeling and renovation issues, a picture could be worth a thousand dollars.