Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Latest Threat to Homeowners - Chinese Drywall

An emerging issue with homes constructed in the early years of this decade (2002 to 2007) stems from the use of imported drywall that came from China. This particular drywall has a high sulphur content which results in amongst other things a rotten egg smell. This is essentially the least of the problems that this material creates. It was produced with materials that emit hydrogen sulphide gas and other sulphide gases, which may cause serious health problems, such as shortness of breath, dizziness, headaches, fatigue, insomnia, eye irritations and respiratory difficulties. The sulphur gas has caused the affected homes to have blackened, scorched wiring behind switch plates, wall plugs, air conditioners and on copper piping.
As was the case with ureaformaldehyde foam insulation used in home construction and renovation years ago, the presence of imported Chinese drywall is stigmatizing homes throughout numerous areas in the U.S. Click on the link below to view a CNN report on the matter:


Despite reports of alleged issues with Chinese drywall in British Columbia, Health Canada and Customs Border Services report that no such material was ever imported into Canada. As such, this would appear to be a U.S. only related issue and is yet another hit to the ravaged real estate market south of the border.
Ureaformaldehyde foam insulation,(UFFI), was at one time believed to have been a major source of concern for homeowners to the extent that the standard Agreement of Purchase and Sale document used in Ontario has aspecific clause dealing with the matter. Subsequent studies have found that the danger associated with UFFI has long since passed and was only essentially onloy a threat during the curing process after installation. The same is unlikely to be found however with this imported drywall wherein the only cure is to completely remove it from the home, repair any damage to wiring etc. and re-drywall the premises with new material.

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Rick relocated to Collingwood from Toronto in 1985 through a transfer with Goodyear Canada. In 1987 Rick was recruited by a major client of Goodyear’s, managing their Canadian business based in Barrie before moving to Chicago in 1992 as Vice President of Sales & Marketing. Upon returning to Canada in 1996, Rick ran an industrial products manufacturing company in Stratford, Ontario. In 1998 Rick returned to Collingwood with his two children. Rick is a licensed real estate Broker with Royal LePAGE Locations North in Collingwood and holds his MVA designation (Market Value Appraiser-Residential). He is an active volunteer in the community serving several years on the Board of Directors with the Collingwood Chamber of Commerce as Treasurer, 6 years on the Board of Directors for the Southern Georgian Bay Association of REALTORS® of which he is the Past President (2008) and currently serves on a committee with the Ontario Real Estate Association. Rick is a diverse executive manager with extensive experience in strategic planning, manufacturing, finance, human resources and quality assurance management.