With the economy starting to show signs of life, many homeowners are beginning to perform previously delayed construction projects. However, finances can still be a major issue, which is one reason why some homeowners elect to forego hiring a general contractor and instead act as an “owner-builder.” When a property owner chooses to act as […]

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The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) was enacted to provide the fullest possible protection of the environment when governmental entities make decisions that have the potential of adversely affecting the environment.

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If you represent those in the construction industry, you should advise them to pay close attention to any licensing requirements of any contract or subcontract they may enter into.

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California law imposes a duty on home buyers to perform inspections and charges them with knowledge of conditions that are patent and obvious.

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Contractors should be aware of the requirement that stop notices be served on the particular branch of the construction lender actually “administering or holding” the loan funds, per California Civil Code section 3083.

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Construction lenders beware of California Civil Code section 3137(c), which provides that a mechanic’s lien for “site improvements” has priority over a trust deed recorded before commencement of the site improvement work in certain circumstances.

That provision has several subparts, but one trap for the unsuspecting lender and title insurance company is this if the loan proceeds secured by the trust deed are solely or primarily to pay for the construction of the site improvements, then a mechanic’s lien for those site improvements would have priority over the prior-recorded trust deed. Period.

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