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RE: RE: duplication of plans

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Thank you Ralph,
As Rick Raneous pointed out in his post, the individual home owner who
wishes to construct a residence should have the right to construct his home
based upon a minimum standard which the Conventional Framing section
However, what about those that purchase a home from a builder who designs
and builds based upon conventional framing standards. Does the purchaser
know s/he is buying a home whose strength requiments is less than that of an
engineered product? In the first case, the owner will live in it and has
made the choice to be responible for his choice. The later provides the
homeowner with a product that s/he perceives to be as well designed and
construted as any custom home - which is obviously not the case.
So how do we protect the public. Can we stipulate that conventional framing
provisions be used only by the owner of the home who intends to live in the
What the UBC and even the improved rhetoric of the IBC fail to address is
the misreprentation of a product - inferior to it's competition that,
because of a simple irregularity must conform to stricter standards.
I believe that the majority of homes constructed under the provisions of
conventional framing are built by small developers who take advantage of the
code to build a product with knowingly less resistive value and market it as
a comparable product to engineered homes. The code should require the
disclosure to the potential purchaser that the home was not designed by a
professional and that it was designed to the minimum standards allowed by
code. The only thing gained is the developers profit.
Most importantly, as you suggest, is the buyers perception of what they are
purchasing. The home is sold for comparable market value based upon size and
finish (ignoring structural integrety)and is not equal to homes built upon
stricter code requirements.
I am forwarding a copy of this letter to the SEAOC List as well as to a
member of the IBC Code committee who is responsible for the conventional
framing section.

I would request that, in light of this information, the Code committee
stipulate provisions to disclose to the public when a home is constructed of
a lesser standard and to require the explanation of the difference between
engineered and conventionally framed structures. The developer should not be
allowed to profit unfairly from a slight irregularity and misrepresent his


Dennis Wish PE

P.S. Ralph, from all of the complaints I had against conventional framing
provisions, not until your letter did it occur to me that the real problem
is profiteering and misrepresentation of product to unsuspecting buyers.

|-----Original Message-----
|From: Rhkratzse [mailto:Rhkratzse(--nospam--at)]
|Sent: Sunday, March 08, 1998 6:55 PM
|To: wish(--nospam--at)
|Subject: Re: RE: duplication of plans
|Dennis, thanks for your comments about my note.  I appreciate your effort
|keep the costs down for the buyer, and we certainly agree in our concern
|the innocent buyer who thinks s/he is getting something "safe" because it's
|new.  If I remember right you're pushing to have the Conventional
|provisions be more stringent than the engineered requirements, rather than
|only a fraction of them as now.  More power to you!  I do almost entirely
|residential wood-frame and this is an important issue.
|Ralph Hueston Kratz, S.E.
|Richmond CA