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Old 03-28-2011, 01:10 AM   #1
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Is it okay to buy a house that had chinese drywall im the past?

The house has been gutted a fixed. AC was replaced and all the electrical has been replaced. It looks like a brand new house. The constructor/owner is re-using the appliances and cabinets. It's concerning since I thought the chinese dry wall messed up the appliances. Anybody have any past experience on the subject at hand? How hard do you think it would be to sell the house down the road if there aren't any problems?
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Old 03-28-2011, 01:21 AM   #2
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Does the seller/agent have to disclose if the house formerly had Chinese drywall? It's a bit reassuring just to know that they weren't trying to hide it, unless, of course, there's some law that says they have to.
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Old 03-28-2011, 01:23 AM   #3
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Old 03-28-2011, 06:30 AM   #4
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Health wise, if all the old drywall has been removed, then you should be fine.

Here is some good information...

http://www.chinesedrywall.com/remediation.html


* Replacement of all drywall in the home;
* Replacement of all electrical wiring (insulated and uninsulated);
* Replacement of all copper pipes;
* Replacement of the entire HVAC system;
* Replacement of most appliances (particularly refrigerators);
* Replacement of electronics, such as TVs and computers;
* Replacement of all carpeting;
* Replacement of hardwood and vinyl flooring;
* Replacement of tile floor unless it can be protected during remediation;
* Replacement of cabinets and countertops (note, this ruling was based on
economics as the court found that it was more cost-effective in this case to
replace these items rather than attempt removal and storage);
* Replacement of trim, molding and baseboards;
* Replacement of all bathroom fixtures;
* After removal of all drywall, properties must be cleaned with HEPA vacuum,
wet-wiped or power-washed, and aired out for 15-30 days; and
* Property must be certified by an independent engineering company to
certify that the remediated home is safe.
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Old 03-28-2011, 06:53 AM   #5
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As a carpenter and someone familiar with this incident. I say you are 99.9% in the clear if its all new drywall and wiring.

Basically the chemical compound used to make drywall in China from 2001 - 2007, was not tested well. The material broke down over time and released fumes (hydrogen sulfide) The fumes would corrode metal, especially copper which is used in most appliance wiring. As well as other things a bit more harmful, Bloody noses, headaches, noxious etc.

If the house still had a problem, the smell would be an issue right off the bat. I would be cautious if the same appliances are being used (i.e. Refridgerator, electric stove if applicable, dish washer, microwave, central air conditioning.. stuff thats sometimes built in and to big to move easily) But if they are working now, you should not have any issue in the future from the drywall. I personally would have liked to have gone in while the house was gutted and see the wiring behind the walls. But I imagine if they replaced the Drywall they ran new wire while the walls where open (or should have in that stage, cause it would have been very very easy). That would be my biggest concern. Because there is no way to look without opening up a section of the wall.

If the problems are gone, it should not be an issue selling the house down the road. Its not gonna linger or anything. Once you get the defective material out, and replace the damaged stuff (i.e. wiring most common, outside of the drywall itself), its a a completely remodeled house.
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Old 03-28-2011, 08:47 AM   #6
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I'm actually handling all the Habitat for Humanity houses and their chinese drywall remediation, and while the information BHM posted is pretty spot on, I would request new appliances. As far as the air out goes, 15-30 days is if you do an "idle" air out. I f you use an air scrubber or neg-air with a hepa filter you can reduce that time by about 80%. But back to the OP, as long as they gutted everything, including the wiring, they should replace the appliances, and cabinets usually get replaced as well. After all that, I wouldn't have a problem buying a remediated house.
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Old 03-28-2011, 09:23 AM   #7
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I would ask for a copy of the contractors insurance certificate as well. This will let you know if they have an active general liability policy. This way if something does come up in the future you have done your due diligence.
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Old 03-28-2011, 09:41 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BHM View Post
Health wise, if all the old drywall has been removed, then you should be fine.

Here is some good information...

http://www.chinesedrywall.com/remediation.html


* Replacement of all drywall in the home;
* Replacement of all electrical wiring (insulated and uninsulated);
* Replacement of all copper pipes;
* Replacement of the entire HVAC system;
* Replacement of most appliances (particularly refrigerators);
* Replacement of electronics, such as TVs and computers;
* Replacement of all carpeting;
* Replacement of hardwood and vinyl flooring;
* Replacement of tile floor unless it can be protected during remediation;
* Replacement of cabinets and countertops (note, this ruling was based on
economics as the court found that it was more cost-effective in this case to
replace these items rather than attempt removal and storage);
* Replacement of trim, molding and baseboards;
* Replacement of all bathroom fixtures;
* After removal of all drywall, properties must be cleaned with HEPA vacuum,
wet-wiped or power-washed, and aired out for 15-30 days; and
* Property must be certified by an independent engineering company to
certify that the remediated home is safe.
Wow, that is a lot to replace. It almost seems like it would be easier to bulldoze everything off the slab and start over. Chinese drywall is nasty stuff.
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Old 03-28-2011, 10:15 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GhostSaint View Post
I would ask for a copy of the contractors insurance certificate as well. This will let you know if they have an active general liability policy. This way if something does come up in the future you have done your due diligence.
As a CGC, I doubt very seriously if there is any chance a GL policy is going to cover anything. If they overlooked it or skipped it, it's not a GL issue and they'll refuse the claim. Then, you're suing a corporation that can dissolve and die. If it is later found that there was more damage than originally thought which was related to the DW, then it's still an issue against the original manufacturer and/or installer/distributor.

I've only done one Chinese Drywall house, but I've read a good bit and would tend to believe it's being completely overblown. If the house has been stripped to studs and cleaned, then I'd have no problem with it as long as I know it was done correctly. As for the appliances, I'd simply assume they're going to die and negotiate accordingly. Value them at zero or less than zero knowing you're going to have to replace them then use them until they do die.
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Old 03-28-2011, 10:19 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bonnjer View Post
Wow, that is a lot to replace. It almost seems like it would be easier to bulldoze everything off the slab and start over. Chinese drywall is nasty stuff.
Except, the framing, exterior siding, roofing, plumbing fixtures and lines are all fine. Frankly, the trim and finish hardware are all fine. If it weren't for the fact that you have to take out cabinets to access drywall, I'd leave the cabinets and seal and paint them if they were custom grade painted cabinets. If they're typical chinese knock-down cabinets, then it's just as well to toss them. Granite tops, tile, stone and wood floor coverings can all be cleaned and saved.

I saw a house in Biloxi that I was asked to provide estimates for the repair for that the owner had the exterior fiberglass doors and vinyl windows replaced. he'd tossed counters, toilets, door knobs and all manner of items that were not necessary to toss. Expensive mistake.
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Old 03-28-2011, 11:19 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shanefradella View Post
The house has been gutted a fixed. AC was replaced and all the electrical has been replaced. It looks like a brand new house. The constructor/owner is re-using the appliances and cabinets. It's concerning since I thought the chinese dry wall messed up the appliances. Anybody have any past experience on the subject at hand? How hard do you think it would be to sell the house down the road if there aren't any problems?
Well, it is OK with me.
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Old 03-28-2011, 12:12 PM   #12
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We looked at buying a foreclosure house that had Chinese drywall. With all that needed to be replaced it would have been more costly than to buy one brand new without the Chinese drywall. Basically it was explained to me that you had to dispose of the drywall a certain way, you couldn't just throw it away, and anything metal had to be replaced, all the light fixtures, wiring, piping, etc. So you basically stripped it down to the wood studs on the inside and started over. In some extreme cases the nails holding the studs in place started to corrode and would need to replace those as well. Personally, I'd probably shy away from it. I'd also look to see if you have to disclose that information when you resell the house, because if you do, you will have a difficult time selling it.

This is based off of what I remember from 2 years ago, so things may have changed slightly.
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Old 03-29-2011, 06:51 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtradin View Post
I saw a house in Biloxi that I was asked to provide estimates for the repair for that the owner had the exterior fiberglass doors and vinyl windows replaced. he'd tossed counters, toilets, door knobs and all manner of items that were not necessary to toss. Expensive mistake.
Uncle Sam is giving people tax write offs for any fixes made due to the defective drywall. If I had to guess, I would say they decided to replace everything because they where going to at some point anyways. A lot of people will just get everything done now claim it all and see what they can get away with when tax season approaches.

But like you pointed out, a lot of stuff on BHM's list is there as precautionary or because you need to take these items down to put up the new drywall (i.e. Cabinets, trim work)
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