State approves building,
performance standards

Guidelines developed by A&M
team define how new home
should perform under warranty

The Texas Residential Construction Commission on Jan. 12, 2005 adopted a set of standards that will — for the first time in Texas — detail how the components of a newly built home or remodeled home should perform while under warranty.

Overseeing the development and implementation of limited warranties and building and performance standards is one of the roles of the Texas Residential Construction Commission, created by the Legislature in 2003.

The rules on warranties and building and performance standards will apply to home builders and remodelers who do interior renovations exceeding $20,000 or that change the size of the home’s living space and will be effective for construction that begins after June 1, 2005. The warranties will be on year for workmanship and materials; two years for plumbing, electrical, heating and air conditioning delivery systems and ten years for major structural components of the home.

“These landmark standards are key to the Texas Residential Construction Commission’s goal for all home buyers in our state to be satisfied, confident homeowners,” said Stephen Thomas, executive director of the commission. “Homeowners will know what performance to expect from their new home or remodeling project, while builders will be able to both assure and improve the quality of construction.”

The standards will be used by the commission when it considers post-construction disputes between builders and homeowners under the new state-sponsored inspection and dispute resolution process. The process must be undertaken before either party in a dispute can proceed with further legal action.

“The state-sponsored inspection and dispute resolution process is intended to be a more effective, less costly alternative to litigation,” Thomas said.

The standards are the result of months of research and input from builders, remodelers, associations and government and industry experts. Most importantly, consumers voiced their concerns in public hearings held around the state, which were factored into the final standards adopted by the Commission. Further, Texas A&M University’s Construction Science Department assisted the agency in the development and review of the standards.

The standards, once updated with revisions approved yesterday, will be found at the commission’s Web site,, or a copy can be obtained by contacting the commissions, toll free at 1-877-651-TRCC or

— The End —

January 10, 2005

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