QUESTIONWe have purchased a home that is only 2 years old. It only started settling this year and the grout in the tiles have started to come away and the tiles can shift up and down when stepped on. This is on all levels of the house. The kitchen, walkway and two bathrooms. It is past the one year warranty. We contacted the builder and they said its not their problem. Very upsetting as its a new home and it would cost a fortune to retile everything. Do you have any suggestions?
ANSWERANSWER - It sounds as though your tile installation has failed and is debonding. It is likely due to compounding deficiencies in how it was installed. The substrate may have not been properly prepared. The tile likely wasn't bonded as well as it should have been, and there is likely not adequate movement joints to mitigate the normal stresses that a tile installation is subjected to. If the tile is installed correctly, it should perform well for the life of the home.
Depending in what state you live in, there are laws to protect the consumer against concealed defects known as a latent defect. In California the homeowner has 10 years to file a claim. Other states may have less time to file a claim. There are also state contractor boards where you can file a complaint to hold the developer responsible for correcting the deficient tile installation. There are attorneys who specialize in construction defect claims and sometimes it may be practical to hire one to pursue your claim.