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News that hits home!


To view articles from previous years, go to our Archives.

Monday, July 02, 2007.Toxic mold video You Tube
Monday, July 02, 2007. IL: City kept mum on potential home defects The structural defects first surfaced at a 115-home luxury development in the Bridgeport neighborhood known as Bridgeport Village. A subcontractor alerted city officials, who commissioned an engineering study that found the plans for the houses did not meet the building code.
Monday, July 02, 2007. FL: CCI-Coast Bank debacle In depth; links to the history of this builder-bank case
Monday, July 02, 2007. Canada: Riverbend developer loses licence CB Development (2000) Ltd., developer of the troubled Riverbend housing project.
Monday, July 02, 2007. WA: Lobbying is big business State's builders spent more than $100,000 lobbying lawmakers this year to help stave off a bill that would have given homeowners more ability to sue if their new house had defects.
Monday, July 02, 2007. FL: Appraiser unveils study of market in North Port "There is vacant home after vacant home, all of them built on spec with no buyer,"
Monday, July 02, 2007. US: Subprime Loans: Buyer's Remorse Hitting Home? Greed got us all into this housing boom, and greed, as it always does, will inevitably take us down.
Monday, July 02, 2007. US: Builders have further to fall Homebuilder stocks continue to be slammed
Monday, July 02, 2007. US: Construction Defects: The Flood to Come? An older article worth repeating, also from Charles Hugh Smith, see below...Smith was one of the writers predicting current problems.
Monday, July 02, 2007. US: July 2nd entry: The Shifting Sands of Lies: An Economy and a Stock Market Built on Lies Allow me to summarize: the entire credit/lending bubble which has long powered the housing, bond and stock markets is in danger of collapsing--unless the lies are maintained. --Charles Hugh Smith
Sunday, July 01, 2007. FL: Owners sue over money pit house 5 yr old $11 million house that doesn't meet code.
Sunday, July 01, 2007. US: Mortgage Fraud and Predatory Lending Information Center for Responsible Lending
Sunday, July 01, 2007. CA: Lodi homeowners find dream neighborhood not so charming Home buyers bought at worst time; were also told by KB Home that the builder was not selling to investors: 60 of the 80 homes in his subdivision are now either for sale, in foreclosure or for rent.
Sunday, July 01, 2007. NJ: UPDATE: Kara Homes Bankruptcy Kara sells property to satisfy bank debt
Sunday, July 01, 2007. PA: Judge delays sentencing for former builder Slayton Ongoing coverage by David Pierce of the Pocono Record on homebuilding and real estate fraud cases from the area.
Friday, June 29, 2007. US: UPDATE on Beazer Exec trying to destroy records From The Charlotte Observer, which exposed Beazer mortgatge/foreclosure problems: fresh trouble for a company already under federal criminal investigation.
Friday, June 29, 2007. Business Week: Building Woes for Beazer MORE: "Was he shredding under orders? If not, who else had knowledge of the information in those documents and what does it imply for the then-CFO?"
Friday, June 29, 2007. US: RESPA News Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act: RESPA violations include issues we've posted news about here on HADD such as builders requiring buyers to use their lender, illegal kickbacks, etc. This is a subscription site, but the headlines and teasers are sufficient to know if the info is worth paying for in your particular case. --Ed.
Friday, June 29, 2007. IL: Lawyer says report proves shoddy porch in fatalities, injuries Besides being too long and wide, the report notes, the porch had insufficient floor joists, perimeter beams, joist hangers and lag screws.
Friday, June 29, 2007. NC: Efforts should persist in getting a slope development law Objections from builders groups, real estate agents, others, killed legislation intent on ensuring homes built on steep slopes would not slide downhill.
Friday, June 29, 2007. CA: UPDATE: Mayor wants to see alleged Runkle Canyon contamination for himself Joint partnership between KB Home, Lennar to build 461 houses on land that may be contaminated.
Friday, June 29, 2007. Motley Fool Investing Site: Fall of the House of Beazer UPDATE: Shredding of documents might leave Beazer's reputation in tatters
Friday, June 29, 2007. NJ: MORE on Kara Homes Bankruptcy Kara Homes getting new name--Maplewood Homebuilders. Unsecured creditors, (homeowners, subcontractors, etc), will only recover pennies on the dollar.
Friday, June 29, 2007. NJ: UPDATE on Kara Homes (aka Maplewood) Bankruptcy and New Name Comments at end of article are also interesting.
Friday, June 29, 2007. US: Home stores' sales not so sweet Housing market swoon hits furniture, home improvement sectors
Thursday, June 28, 2007.Building Science Articles on window flashing, drainage planes...common problem areas we see in complaints at HADD.
Thursday, June 28, 2007. US: Flashing Recessed Windows Company that repaired many leaky windows explains how to do the job right. Does your builder use any flashing? One of the most commonly omitted materials that HADD hears about lately is missing window flashing which virtually ensures windows will leak inside walls.
Thursday, June 28, 2007.Mortgage Fraud Current news
Thursday, June 28, 2007.Housing Crash Current news
Thursday, June 28, 2007. SC: Homes were approved for occupancy despite flaws, records show Trusses improperly fastened in Pulte development, possibly others.
Thursday, June 28, 2007. TX: Update on Oak City Ryland complaints For more than four hours Tuesday night, residents of the Bridlewood Park neighborhood told the Live Oak City Council about watching their new homes deteriorate around them. City Councilwoman says Ryland has 15% error rate
Thursday, June 28, 2007. NJ: UPDATE on Kara Homes bankruptcy case NOTICE OF BUILDER NAME CHANGE Kara Homes founder ousted and builder's name changed under revised plan...(changing name to) Maplewood Homebuilders LLC., owned by Glen Fishman, and Plainfield Specialty Holdings II, a hedge fund.
Thursday, June 28, 2007. Charlotte Observer: UPDATE: Beazer "This recent development will, in our opinion, dramatically increase the appearance of the company's culpability," Citigroup Inc. analyst Stephen Kim wrote (Contains link to Observer's series on Beazer foreclosures.)
Thursday, June 28, 2007. MD: Condo owners sue Ryland Water infiltration and damage, structural instability and more
Thursday, June 28, 2007. US: Beazer and KB Home troubles From CNN
Thursday, June 28, 2007. US: FBI: Just released 2006 Mortgage Fraud Report Finance-related occupations, including accountants, mortgage brokers, and lenders, were the most common suspect occupations associated with reported mortgage fraud.
Thursday, June 28, 2007. Nat'l interest: Schoolyard secrets Article exposes some dangerous assumptions about the public's right to know about toxins in their neighborhoods.
Thursday, June 28, 2007. LA: 9 contractors hit with theft charges Post-Katrina construction fraud
Thursday, June 28, 2007. US: Deflating the Housing Bubble Growing wave of scandals surrounding the mortgage and housing industry
Thursday, June 28, 2007. US: Just Ask Lou Columnist advises consumer to pass up shady sounding deal from builder, & more...
Thursday, June 28, 2007. US: UPDATE on Beazer , federal investigations & destroyed documents Raises red flags regarding content of documents
Thursday, June 28, 2007. FL: Palmetto subdivision homeowners surprised by blanket lien Roughly 200 individual property owners are finding themselves in the first step of a foreclosure because of a legal tussle between well-known Palmetto builder deMorgan Communities and the company that did roads, utilities, sewers and drainage for the development....Real estate attorneys said that the neighborhood's troubles could be a taste of what is to come as contractors in the state's limping real estate market use every remedy available to them under Florida law to get developers to pay.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. TX: Shaky Foundation: Homeowners — and HUD — give city failing marks Critics charge department is pandering to favored developers, wasting money, and has little accountability.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. US: More on Beazer Homes and destruction of documents Wall Street Journal: HUD said it's examining whether Beazer violated federal regulations in arranging government-insured mortgage loans, while the FBI said it's looking at issues of possible fraud.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. CO: Man In Fight With Builder Over Shifting Soil Disabled military vet can't sell cracked home built by Centex
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. US: Beazer Accountant Fired in Document Destruction Try MORE...Beazer Homes USA Inc., which is under investigation by the FBI for potential fraud, fired its chief accounting officer for violating the company's ethics policy by attempting to destroy documents.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. US: BEAZER HOMES: cans chief accounting officer for destroying documents UPDATE on Securities and Mortgage fraud investigations in news posted earlier this year.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. NV: Developer describes consultant's bonus for Las Vegas land deal Developer Donald Davidson standing trial on charges he paid Commissioner Erin Kenny $200,000 for getting zoning on property changed from residential to commercial.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. Contractor Magazine: Bring residential fire sprinklers into the code Heavy opposition from home builders, who consider fire sprinklers an unnecessary expense that affects their bottom line.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. AL: Commission needs to revisit inspector issue Author grasps concept that shoddy construction is not "affordable" for communities!
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. US: More trouble for homebuilders Lennar's loss of nearly a quarter BILLION dollars, etc...
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. PA: Contractor pleads in fraud case Frank James Jarbeck Jr. pleads guilty on multiple counts...
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. OR: Bid to protect homebuyers fizzles In an emotionally charged hearing room, a budget subcommittee last week chose not to advance House Bill 2656. The bill's proponents accused the powerful Oregon Home Builders Association of acting in bad faith.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. PA: UPDATE: Developer pays $250,000 to end federal mortgage probe Homeowners will not get restitution and Percudani can remain a home builder and contractor. (The headline perfectly describes how this problem keeps happening. --Ed.)
Wednesday, June 27, 2007. US: Second Home Scam Self Defense Realty Times: Con artists, including builders, know "baby boomers" have money & are ripe for the taking. Red flags: Guaranteed Appreciation; Preconstruction Specials; Cash-back deals; Glitzy Advertising; using experts recommended by the seller/builder/real estate agent; not getting house inspected before closing, etc...
Tuesday, June 26, 2007. US: Builders pushing hard to be able to keep cheap (illegal) labor From NAHB's Nation's Building News.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007. US: Return of the Amnesty Bill Horror Illegal immigration debate.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007. MO: Developer pleads guilty to not paying taxes for workers Michael Schlup d/b/a Schlup Investments Inc. and Plaza Gardens on the Lake Inc
Tuesday, June 26, 2007. US: Appraisers push for real estate fraud rules It's called "hitting the number" - or inflating a home's value - and real estate appraisers who don't do it often enough can find it hard to make a living.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007. US: Eagles soar while species protections sink US Supreme court rules in favor of home builders, over environment and endangered species.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007. US: Ex-execs plead guilty to Countrywide fraud Mortgage lender's former executives plead guilty to insider trading
Tuesday, June 26, 2007. TX: Alleged shoddy workmanship leads property owner to sue contractor Fast-Trak Construction
Monday, June 25, 2007. US: Immigration II: No Guarantees Under pressure from White House, business community -- with chief exception of home builders -- has agreed not to oppose stricter work-site rules requiring verification of workers' legal status.
Monday, June 25, 2007. PA: JURY TO CITY: PAY UP City took family's property for housing development; four years later jury says city must pay.
Monday, June 25, 2007. Nat'l interest: Give me a 10 or else! Customer surveys in general; mentions Beazer Homes attempting to pay for high ratings.
Monday, June 25, 2007. FL: Mold issue gets some air Problems with Levitt and Sons: Rosenberg said he has asked for a list of the items that will be repaired, but was told that only those residents who agree to sign a confidentiality agreement will be allowed to read or pay to receive a copy.
Monday, June 25, 2007. NY Times: The Best Judges Business Can Buy Wealthy interests trying to influence court decisions by pouring money into state judicial elections
Monday, June 25, 2007. US: 6 Sleazy Home Improvement Scams "Some are actual scam artists, while others are just incompetent or unethical," says Ellis Levinson, a consumer reporter and author of the book "Hiring Contractors Without Going Through Hell."
Monday, June 25, 2007. KS: Pulte video Lexana homeowner's complaint about faulty construction; some neighbors fer her complaint is driving down their property values. (We are having some problems getting this video to play now (except for the ads!) but if you can see it note that one of the "homeowners" interviewed is really the Pulte VP of finance!)
Saturday, June 23, 2007. Nat'l interest: Two Veterans Experience with Buying a House from Pulte Homes Consumer's site. There is more regulation on the manufacture of toilet paper than on houses!
Saturday, June 23, 2007. US: Mortgage Forms Sow Confusion FTC found that despite current truth-in-lending laws many borrowers simply do not understand their mortgages -- especially subprime loans that come with complex features and costly penalties.
Saturday, June 23, 2007. AZ: Company shake-up reaches Sun City 14-year Pulte veteran one of 1900 people builder laid off nationally; Tehama project in hibernation.
Friday, June 22, 2007. You Tube video of news report: Songwriter's Toxic Nightmare Forced to abandon home, possessions.
Friday, June 22, 2007. NY: Valley Cottage family's home isn't finished, and town isn't happy Family ripped off by builder, then another contractor. Now living in violation of city code, with nowhere else to go. Their own lawyer and the bank allowed closing without a certificate of occupancy (CO) a problem HADD frequently sees and does not recommend home buyers close without.
Friday, June 22, 2007. TX; TRCC: Homeowner seeks help in renovation dispute Homeowner trying to re-coop portion of $23,000 he paid Blue Diamond Remodeling (Owner Richard Rucker). Complaints against company have been received by BBB and Texas Residential Construction Commission.
Friday, June 22, 2007. FL: UPDATE on CCI case Ongoing saga of Jessee Batttle's Construction Compliance Inc, company failure and possible criminal charges.
Friday, June 22, 2007. FL: Son of Developer refuses to pay fines on "behemoth truck" ''The neighbors hate me, dude,'' said George, the son of wealthy developer John Paul George, owner of Majestic Homes, a major custom-home builder in Florida.
Friday, June 22, 2007. AZ: More on the PULTE incident with the protesters being doused East Valley Tribune, the paper that did the series on the "checkered past" of developer Jim Rhodes earlier this year.
Friday, June 22, 2007. PA: Poconos home builder case settled for fraction of what state attorney general sought One of the biggest fraud cases he'd ever seen...None of the money will go to the homeowners, and Percudani is free to build homes again. Many of the homeowners lost their homes and/or are in bankruptcy as a result.
Friday, June 22, 2007. US: Has That Homebuilder Got a Deal for You? Pulte, D.R. Horton, (others); when a builder offers a $99,000 discount on a newly built home, are you really buying a $300,000 home for $201,000? Or are you paying $201,000 for a home that's really a $190,000 home spiffed up with marketing smoke and mirrors? (Article mentions "cash back" deals, too, but doesn't point out that many of them are illegal as previous news has done. --Ed.)
Friday, June 22, 2007. US: The downside of real-estate sales incentives Might mask a much steeper downturn in real-estate sales. The most aggressive deals may be downright fraudulent.
Friday, June 22, 2007. US: Suspicious Activity Reports Prove to be a Helpful Tool in Combating Mortgage Fraud From Mortgage Fraud blog
Friday, June 22, 2007. TX: UPDATE: Congressman Informs Feds About Mirasol Homes U.S. Rep. Charlie Gonzalez of San Antonio recently sent a letter to the Federal Trade Commission concerning complaints about health and construction issues raised by residents who live at Mirasol Homes (built by KB Home).
Friday, June 22, 2007. MO: Incomplete projects cause headaches Frederick Hiner stopped work on the Hollister development nearly two years ago, leaving four of the 11 homes partially built and without streets, water and sewer.
Friday, June 22, 2007. CO; U.S.: D.R. Horton Closes Trimark Communities in Denver Housing giant also consolidates Melody Homes and Continental Homes in market overhaul.
Friday, June 22, 2007. ADR World: House Subcommittee Probes Fairness of Consumer Arbitration Requires subscription; for free articles about same thing see Tue June 19th 2007 News below.
Friday, June 22, 2007. US: ADR World Arbitration articles.
Friday, June 22, 2007. LA: Easterling v. Royal Manufactured Housing Manufactured home dispute and arbitration. (Both this and the WA state case below are PDF's)
Friday, June 22, 2007. WA: Satomi Owners Association v. Satomi Appeals Court said Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) doesn't trump state law re: use of courts in this condominium warranty dispute. One issue: whether there is interstate commerce triggering FAA.
Friday, June 22, 2007. AZ: Water trucks douse Pulte protesters article re: video below. Labor dispute. Pulte denies it was their truck but video clearly shows "Pulte" on the truck.
Friday, June 22, 2007. You Tube: Video showing Pulte truck spraying protesters with water Check out menu below showing more videos of Pulte problems.
Thursday, June 21, 2007. US: High Court Has Been Good For Business Consumer advocates say it is especially important that victims of corporate wrongdoing have the option of going to court, partly because the federal government for years has been scaling back its regulation of business.
Thursday, June 21, 2007. OR: Gov signs bills into law Certain of these bills pertain to construction.
Thursday, June 21, 2007. US: More on harmful arbitration claues in consumer contracts (including home purchases)
Thursday, June 21, 2007. FL; Nat'l interest: Make Sure Builders and Developers Put Promises in Writing Promises made by Linderand Inc., developer and Bracken Chase Home Builders were not kept; homeowners on existing property now have expensive drainage problem.
Thursday, June 21, 2007. US: Buying an Environmentally Friendly Home Tips.
Thursday, June 21, 2007. FL: Proposed amendment pits builders against voters Plan should reflect the public interest
Thursday, June 21, 2007. CA: Radiation Rangers Developers of Simi Valley’s Runkle Canyon claim the water tested clean. Then a band of citizens discovered super-toxic goo seeping from the ground...where KB Homes hopes to build 461 residences.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. US: Nat'l Association of Mortgage Bankers warns about using builders' in-house lenders PDF: when the consumer informs the builder they have chosen an unaffiliated mortgage company, the builder refuses to go to closing, cancels the contract, keeps the customer’s deposit, and denies the consumer the previously offered incentives. (RESPA law violations)
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. TN: 'Nightmare' dream home may lead to building codes in Campbell Co. Leaky home built by Alco Builders.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. TN: Couple battles contractor in court over 5-year house project Homeowners obtained judgment against Jones Brothers Construction for their losses of over $100,000, but haven't been able to collect. House "has to be torn down."
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. Nat'l interest: Builder story on "America's Most Wanted" to air Sat. 23 June 2007 According to the FBI, Craig John Oliver, (aliases John Oliver, Craig J. Oliver and Mel Merlowe), a convicted felon, defrauded 68 Virginia and Maryland homeowners out of more than $2.5 million.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. CT; Nat'l interest: Home Construction Became Big Headache Contractor didn't finish work, put lien on house. House wasn't even connected to water or sewer. Homeowner cannot sue contractor because of arbitration clause.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. US: Update: Arbitration Hearings How consumers are negatively affected by mandatory arbitration agreements. Good links to legislation, testimony, etc.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. US: The Illegal Employer Problem Between 1999 and 2003, work-site enforcement operations were scaled back 95 percent
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. US: You can write to your elected officials asking to ban mandatory arbitration in consumer contracts Click on "Ban Mandatory Arbitration" on the right hand side/menu. Very easy, no registration required.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. US: Builders Sharpen Attack on Flawed Immigration Bill NAHB launches major effort to ensure they will have steady supply of cheap unskilled labor
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. MN; Nat'l interest: $1million lobbying effort helped kill bills insurers feared Insurance industry killed legislation that would make it easier for wronged consumers to sue.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. US: Homebuilders Failed to Pay Taxes on Undocumented Workers State & Federal Governments May be Owed Over One Hundred Billion Dollars...obtain labor through "coyotes" who arrange illegal labor for subcontractors. (This is posted for the information/opinion content only. --Ed.)
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. Nat'l interest: La Quinta homeowners allege fraud 44 investors suing D.R. Horton for securities fraud
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. OH: Judge allows foreclosures UPDATE: Evergreen Homes LLC and Evergreen Investment Corp Bankruptcy
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. Canada: Riverbend fight goes on the web offers readers history of real estate debacle w/CB Development
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. CA: New Home Nightmare "Call Kurtis," local consumer reporter, tackles moldy home problem. Builder has been unable to make the home livable.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. CO: Liens Placed On New Homes Homeowners named as defendants in legal action filed by unpaid subcontractors: Majority of homes affected built by DR Horton...Homewoners can ask to "tender defense," which allows title company to represent them through legal process...
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. NJ: UPDATE: Kara Homes Bankruptcy Completion expected for some projects
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. TX: UPDATE on Mirasol development built by KB Home Inspections show water intrusion, high humidity, mold, mildew, bacteria, faulty air conditioning and ductwork, and insufficient attic insulation.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. US: Housing Crash Current news
Wednesday, June 20, 2007. US: Mortgage Fraud Current news articles
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. US: Witnesses Clash Over Mandatory Arbitration Clauses A financial services lawyer appeared today at a hearing on Capitol Hill to defend contract provisions that require consumers to take disputes to arbitration, but other witnesses blasted the provisions.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. GA: Builder pleads guilty to theft Builder swore in affadavits that he paid subs, which he had not, causing homebuyers to have liens on their property. (HADD sees this in complaints's interesting that in this case it was considered a crime because usually homeowners are told "get a lawyer--it's civil." --Ed.)
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. FL: Ex employees sue Mercedes Homes Allege they were not paid overtime they were entitled to.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. NJ: UPDATE on Kara Homes Bankruptcy Town to go after bond for Birch Hill project
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. SC: Fraud suspect turns self in John Lauro-Brotherton used mortgage brokerage, licensed construction company, home manufacturer, two banks and the Florida Division of Corporations to facilitate scheme.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. US: McGreevy on Law Though this is written for the benefit of subcontractors, it is also useful to home buyers and homeowners.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. US: Reminder: Important request for arbitration stories Give Me Back My Rights -- a coalition of groups fighting to remove Binding Mandatory Arbitration clauses from consumer contracts
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. MD; Nat'l interest: Buyers beware Homebuilders often write contracts with certain arbitration companies, and those firms tend to be on the side of the builder.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. US: Center for Responsible Lending Mandatory Arbitration Harms Homeowners in lending, too.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. US: Hearing on the "Mandatory Binding Arbitration Agreements: Are They Fair for Consumers?" Reminder: this is the US House of Representatives page to watch on this legislation.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. US: US Public Interest Research Group on Arbitration Legislation in Congress Most Americans think that everyone with a dispute has the right to a day in court. Wrong...
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. UPDATE: US: 2007 FAIR ARBITRATION ACT More testimony about proposed federal legislation to ban mandatory arbitration clauses in consumer contracts. This testimony is by David Schwartz, a law prof. at the U. of WI. This is a PDF file.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. WI: Homeowners protest D.R. Horton development Shortchanged by company that built their subdivision, homeowners protest. Court rejected builder's restraining order.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. US: FAIR ARBITRATION ACT OF 2007 Abolishing binding mandatory arbitration clauses in consumer contracts. VERY important legislation benefitting all consumers, including those buying HOUSES.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007. US: BAD STUCCO We've seen a number of articles in the news recently about homes with stucco related construction defects. This site, Bad Stucco, should help understand what goes wrong. --Ed.
Monday, June 18, 2007. Canada: Court orders sale of BC homes at market value CB Developments in receivership
Monday, June 18, 2007."KB Home Warning" Consumer's experience with the builder
Monday, June 18, 2007. CO: UPDATE: Lobbyist criticized, but not sanctioned Builder's lobbyist lied to voters about a consumer protection bill in attemtp to kill it; lawmakers say it is ok, protected by free speech. (Remember that next time a builder sues a homeowner for truthfully complaining! --Ed.
Monday, June 18, 2007. NJ: Crack Down on Tax-Cheating Home Builders Bill sponsored by Sen. Ellen Karcher would increase penalties on home builders who misclassify construction workers to circumvent tax laws; approved by Senate by vote of 24-12.
Monday, June 18, 2007.Centex Leaving Ohio Market Centex says move matches what other builders are doing.
Monday, June 18, 2007. US: Home Builder Sentiment Down: And They’re Mad At Me?? Columnist Diana Olick and Dave Seiders, the Chief Economist for the NAHB share something: Seiders apparently isn't favored by home builder CEO's for speaking negative news either.
Monday, June 18, 2007. US: How the housing collapse is like the Iraq war. In both Iraq and housing, folks who got us into the mess have repeatedly reassured the public that the debacle is contained
Monday, June 18, 2007. US: Important Questions to Ask Before You Sign a Remodeling Contract From Realty Times
Monday, June 18, 2007. US: Trail of complaints spans several states John David Boggs and Mike Ellis and/or Mark Grawunder, d/b/a Affordable Roofing, Johnson Roofing, KDA Speigle Roofing, A.D. Home Improvements, Scott's company, Tri-State Roofing, Bates Roofing, Trinity Roofing, M One Roofing...
Monday, June 18, 2007. MI: UPDATE: Bay View Conso lawsuits Excavating co. says developer owes nearly $90,000
Monday, June 18, 2007. OR; Nat'l interest: Proposal would toughen ban on fake stucco Illnesses attributed to use of siding's synthetic version.
Sunday, June 17, 2007. US: Ongoing problems exposed with using the builders' lenders: Nat'l Association of Mortgage Brokers (NAMB) Applauds Investigation of Builders’ RESPA Violations Warns that Violations Emerging Now Are Just Tip of the Iceberg
Sunday, June 17, 2007. US: The Only Thing They Have to Fear Is ... a Level Playing Field Private industry arbitration, such as in home builder and home warranty contracts, deprives consumers of essential rights. Though this article is about arbitration in general it's relevant to housing. --Ed.
Sunday, June 17, 2007. US: 7 Days Remaining to Move to Be a Lead Plaintiff in the Shareholder Lawsuit Against Toll Brothers Complaint alleges that defendants violated federal securities laws by issuing material misrepresentations to the market concerning the Company's business and prospects, thereby artificially inflating the price of Toll Brothers securities.
Sunday, June 17, 2007. MD: How to fight developer and win Residents fight K. Hovnanian development
Sunday, June 17, 2007. AL: You're on your own on the Alabama coast IF YOU live near the coast, don't rely on FEMA's flood plain maps to decide how safe you are.
Sunday, June 17, 2007. Nat'l interest: Low cost homes turn into high priced headache More on Habitat for Humanity problems.
Sunday, June 17, 2007. IL: Black mold warps family's dream into nightmare Due to building defect toxins force evacuation of Habitat for Humanity in Knox County. Home will supposedly be "fixed" and sold to another family. Original owner lost $13,000.
Sunday, June 17, 2007. AZ; Nat'l interest: Experts have tips for new-home buyers Some good tips but HADD urges buyers to do MUCH more than these types of articles normally recommend. For example they always tell you to check licensing agencies and BBB's but from our experience both entities may keep at least some compliants out of public view. See our Downloads link on our home page for more info on this topic. --Ed.
Sunday, June 17, 2007. FL: Condo investors having a nightmare--have lost millions Condos unfinished. Contractor & subs not paid. Bank foreclosing on project.
Sunday, June 17, 2007. NY: UPDATE: The neighborhood killers Part of ongoing report: The Daily News investigative series "Building Boom-doggle"
Sunday, June 17, 2007. FL: Habitat homes shoddy, residents contend More than 50 Fairway Oaks homeowners say they fear that the blitz construction was shoddy and that their land, adjacent to two former town dumps, is unstable or contaminated.
Sunday, June 17, 2007. PA: Big Mess at Big Ridge Toll Brothers created illegal housing development, Middle Smithfield Township officials contend....affects legal ownership status of nearly 400 home buyers.
Sunday, June 17, 2007. AZ: $500K house takes its toll: (A DEVELOPER gets taken by a builder!) When he hired Toll Brothers his dream home turned into a nightmare.
Saturday, June 16, 2007. FL: Man wanted for elaborate fraud scheme Jeffrey John Lauro-Brotherton, aka Jeff Lauro, has been associated with Forefront Construction, Palm Harbor Consulting Services, Palm Harbor Homes of Southwest Florida, Maverick Development of Southwest Florida and ETS Interiors.
Saturday, June 16, 2007. TX: Officials say there's hope for troubled Lake Ridge neighborhood Unfinished & abandoned houses, foreclosures, unscrupulous builders, and suspected arson, in "upscale" neighborhood.
Saturday, June 16, 2007. NC; Nat'l interest: Builders resist wind standard FEMA has threatened to withhold relief money from North Carolina if the building code council doesn't adopt the national standard protecting against wind-borne debris.
Friday, June 15, 2007. TX: 5 Indicted in Multimillion Dollar Texas Fraud Scheme Texas attorney and developer, sports agent, bank loan officers, and appraiser indicted in multimillion dollar mortgage fraud scheme. Scheme reached every aspect of real estate loan: seller, buyer/borrower, loan officer, appraiser, escrow officer, title company.
Friday, June 15, 2007. TX: UPDATE: Inspector details Mirasol home problems Water intrusion around windows, too little attic insulation, faulty air- conditioning systems and drainage problems surfaced as key issues in the first comprehensive inspection reports on houses in the complaint-plagued Mirasol Homes subdivision. (Which was built by KB Home.)
Friday, June 15, 2007. GA: Builder Faces 25 Years in Prison Steve Stratacos, aka Steve George.
Friday, June 15, 2007. Nat'l interest: Builders wooing real estate agents Plying agents with freebies, cash bonuses to close sales.
Friday, June 15, 2007. MI: Homebuilders exempted from Michigan Consumer Protection Act Liss, et al. v. Lewiston-Richards: May ultimately allow businesses to engage in unethical behavior, and "the ultimate loser, of course, will be consumers...
Friday, June 15, 2007. US: Tips to "green" your home HGTV article
Friday, June 15, 2007. US: EPA: Indoor Air Quality Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC's) found in paint and many products, have effects ranging from irritation to toxicity.
Friday, June 15, 2007. US: FTC Confirms That Most Homebuyers Couldn't Identify Mortgage Amount Study found half of borrowers couldn't identify loan amount, 90 percent couldn't figure out upfront costs, two-thirds couldn't find prepayment penalties.
Thursday, June 14, 2007. US House of Represenatatives: Hearing on Mandatory Binding Arbitration Click on names to the right, to hear witness testimony.
Thursday, June 14, 2007. US: Mandatory Binding Arbitration Agreements: Are They Fair For Consumers? Testimony of Jordan Fogal to Subcommittee on Commercial and Administrative Law, ( site)
Thursday, June 14, 2007. US: PAUL BLAND'S TESTIMONY ON MANDATORY BINDING ARBITRATION Article has link to PDF file of testimony.
Thursday, June 14, 2007. US: Use It or Lose It U.S. House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank threatened to take away the Federal Reserve's legal power to write consumer-protection rules, telling an official the board must ``use it or lose it.''
Thursday, June 14, 2007. NY: UPDATE on long-running story: Amico freed from prison The Amicos were convicted of running conspiracy that allegedly defrauded mortgage lenders of $58.5 million on homes built in suburban Monroe, Ontario and Wayne counties
Thursday, June 14, 2007. US: AZ and other states make mortgage fraud a crime Artificially inflated values, cash-back schemes, etc.
Thursday, June 14, 2007. MI: Fired official was Inspections head since '91 Was inspector fired for citing builders for violations?
Thursday, June 14, 2007. US: American Arbitration Association Launches Home Construction Arbitration Rules And Mediation Procedures Changes to the rules that every homeowner with an arbitration clause needs to know. See link to actual rules, below. Keep in mind both articles/rules are from the perspective of the arbitration industry which serves the building is not from a consumer's perspective.
Thursday, June 14, 2007. US: American Arbitration Association "Home Construction Arbitration Rules and Mediation Procedures." If you have an arbitration clause in your contracts these are the rules you will likely be under, though some private arbitration firms may go by their own rules.
Thursday, June 14, 2007. HGTV: Framing for Strength A lot of framers don't get how to use housewrap, flashing.
Thursday, June 14, 2007. FL; Nat'l interest: Mortgage firm fires 12 without warning Wells Fargo workers did First Home loans, (a Hovnanian subsidiary).
Thursday, June 14, 2007. NJ: Kara Homes Bankruptcy UPDATE on reorganization.
Thursday, June 14, 2007. NJ: Another builder files for bankruptcy Elliott Building Group, aka Elliot Holding Group; buyers' deposit money may be tied up.
Wednesday, June 13, 2007. NY: Westchester County expands list of shady contractors Reliable Chimney, Frontier Fence, Russell's Door Service; U.S.A. Roofing Inc.; Marotta's Home Improvement; Mighty Joe Young's Contracting; Tim-Ron Fence Co. and Capital 1 Construction... (The question is, how many complaints does it take before the county adds a contractor to the list?)
Wednesday, June 13, 2007. FL: UPDATE: Gopher tortoises win reprieve from live burials Developers no longer allowed to bury gopher tortoises alive. (Previous news said developers paid fine as if it were a fee, and bulldozed over the animals without doing required relocation.)
Wednesday, June 13, 2007. MI; Nat'l interest: The Beautiful Solution to Water Pollution Builders, cities, homeowners using Rain gardens to absorb and store storm water. The gardens also help purify water as it percolates back into soil.
Wednesday, June 13, 2007. TX: Homeowners seek help from Live Oak Dissatisfied buyers of Ryland Homes seek help of City Council, some have set up website,
Wednesday, June 13, 2007. OR: Home sales still sliding as prices inch upward Houses no longer flying off the market.
Wednesday, June 13, 2007. GA; Nat'l interest: Do Georgia's Small Builders Signal a Dangerous Trend? "Meyer-Sutton is a small bankruptcy, but it isn't the only one out there," says Keith Long, head of Otter Creek Management, a $125 million hedge fund in Palm Beach, Fla. "It's a sign that we're right at the tip of what's beginning to unfold."
Wednesday, June 13, 2007. OH: UPDATE: Judge denies creditor's request Evergreen Homes LCC and its other companies will not be changing its bankruptcy status from Chapter 11 Reorganization, to Chapter 7 Liquidation.
Tuesday, June 12, 2007. MI: Suit filed in BayView case; effort to block refund check BayView condos: Suttons Pointe Development, L.L.C. Article describes two cases, one which the builder lost in arbitration and appealed anyway.
Tuesday, June 12, 2007. US: Building a Home Tips from the Nat'l Association of Certified Home Inspectors (NACHI)
Tuesday, June 12, 2007. WA: Court Declines to Apply Fed Arbitration Act to Washington Condo Project Purchaser guaranteed right to pursue judicial relief for breach of the statutory warranties.
Tuesday, June 12, 2007.Mortgage Fraud Current news
Tuesday, June 12, 2007. US: Homebuilders New Mantra: Don't Talk To The Media! It begs the question: What are you all afraid of?
Tuesday, June 12, 2007. MD; Nat'l interest: Green is the goal While green building's touted by the industry as a new trend they invented, some builders have already been doing it for decades. "We've been doing it for years," homebuilder Jim Hurney said. "It just irritates me that houses aren't built right."
Tuesday, June 12, 2007. US: HUD audit hurts stock in Hovnanian Builder had to refund 17 loans; 65 more loans under investigation. Hovnanian also accused of requiring buyers to use its mortgage and title insurance affiliates, a violation of federal law.
Tuesday, June 12, 2007. US: Housing Crash Current news articles
Monday, June 11, 2007. Nat'l interest: War of Words Targets Civil Justice System in California and the Weapon is Fear Phrases, "jackpot justice," "frivolous lawsuits," "runaway juries," or "liberal judges..." carefully crafted to manipulate public opinion and pollute jury pools using fear. (Builders' right-to-repair laws also play on these fears.)
Monday, June 11, 2007. CA: Salinas contractor faces fraud, theft charges Jose Luis Vasquez
Monday, June 11, 2007. NJ: UPDATE on Kara Homes Bankruptcy: More Time for Plan A slew of creditors objected to the home builder's disclosure statement for providing "inadequate" information.
Monday, June 11, 2007. US: Pay Back Time Drawbacks of Cash-back mortgages
Monday, June 11, 2007. US: Over 1 million foreclosures coming Biggest payment shocks will be felt by borrowers who got low-rate introductory loans
Monday, June 11, 2007. TX: UPDATE on defective Mirasol project Built by KB Home
Monday, June 11, 2007. DE: Past County corruption cases tied to land use Ongoing fraud and racketeering case involving developers: Mario B. Capano, Newark home builder, also was snagged in probe. Capano served six-month sentence on obstruction charges, for allegedly counseling witness not to cooperate.
Monday, June 11, 2007. US: Follow the Alphabet Soup Why would an outfit as large as Fannie Mae or a company that makes steel or glass or builds houses want to be a partner or associate member of one of these organizations, other than to have access to our elected officials...?
Sunday, June 10, 2007. US: Texas homeowner to testify in Congress on arbitration. Jordan Fogal, a Texas homeowner and activist, who has fought against her builder for years, will be testifying in the United States Congress on Tuesday June 12 at 10:20am. Her testimony will be in the Subcommittee on Commercial and Administrative Law on the topic "Mandatory Binding Arbitration Agreements: Are They Fair for Consumers?".
Sunday, June 10, 2007. US: Lender beware Vast majority of homebuyers still can get mortgage old-fashioned way: verifying income, putting money down.
Sunday, June 10, 2007. MN: Builder left subcontractors' bills unpaid--now homeowner stuck paying the bill (liens) It is felony theft for a contractor to take money from a consumer and not use it to pay off the subcontractors...
Sunday, June 10, 2007. NC; Nat'l interest: Lost homes haunt families Nationally, the foreclosure rate is 3%; in one Beazer Homes development the rate is 38%. This is part of the Charlotte Observer's series "Sold a Nightmare," on Beazer Homes foreclosure rate and subsequent investigation for mortgage fraud.
Sunday, June 10, 2007. US: A look at local CEOs pocketing top salaries Sharholders unhappy with Toll Brothers CEO pay of $25 million.
Sunday, June 10, 2007. KS: Homeowners wage battle with Pulte Homes over improperly built foundations Both Sabin and Daugherty say they have let the company send repair crews in the past, but that all the work either had been cosmetic or failed to fix the problems. They have no confidence that future repair efforts would finally fix the problems.
Friday, June 08, 2007. US: P*ssed Consumer Consumer Gripe site's pages on construction/builder complaints.
Friday, June 08, 2007. OK: Homeowner questions Lawton's policy builder's permits Builder (unnamed in report) "fixes" obviously leaking shower with a cosmetic dab of caulk. Reporter says builder claimed they would fix the problem.
Friday, June 08, 2007. US: With Houses Lingering on the Market, Builders Outfit Their Model Homes What interior designers try to do, McInnis said, is "create house lust."
Friday, June 08, 2007. US: Mercedes Homes hit by suits on overtime The lawsuits, filed within the past week in U.S. District Court in Orlando, seek class-action status.
Friday, June 08, 2007. FL: UPDATE: Joseph Pufta d/b/a Avalon Homes Builder says he's not guilty; charged with 20 counts of misapplication of construction funds and one count of grand theft. Authorities say more charges pending. Many of Avalon's customers were left financially ruined.
Friday, June 08, 2007. MO: Grain Valley, Mo., Home Builder Guilty of Giving EPA a False Document David Ward, owner of Ward Development & Investment Co, and Woodbury Homes: falsely stated Woodbury had applied for storm-water permit for residential development.
Friday, June 08, 2007. Nat'l interest: Mortgage fraud's costs go beyond the loan Solon police say everyone — from the builder to the mortgage broker to the title company — were in on taking out loans and splitting the cash, with no intention of repaying them...lenders were simply too focused on making money to notice.
Friday, June 08, 2007. NJ: UPDATE on Kara Homes Bankruptcy case Bank to foreclose on Kara development
Friday, June 08, 2007. CA: Civil engineer faces criminal charges in construction project More about engineer Jimmy Jen and contractor Robert McCurn case below: Jen previously had his license suspended & had record of violating building codes.
Friday, June 08, 2007. CA: Dept of Building Inspection liaison charged in theft, fraud Contractor Robert Lee McCurn knowingly did not follow plans; engineer Kaimin “Jimmy” Jen signed off on it anyway in documents filed with the Department of Building Inspection, prosecutors allege.
Friday, June 08, 2007. CA: UPDATE: Red tags lifted off D.R. Horton houses Problem centered on improperly installed anchor bolts that attach homes to concrete foundation. Horton official contacted county and said it had narrowed down improper reports to one employee who was fired.
Friday, June 08, 2007. CA: UPDATE: Permits Reissued To D.R. Horton Building inspectors allege that the developer forged, falsified or changed inspection records on 64 homes. (Article contains link to earlier story)
Friday, June 08, 2007. TX: UPDATE: Mirasol inspections put on fast track KB Home-built housing project w/poor construction, cracked foundations and illnesses residents say are related to mold
Friday, June 08, 2007. Nat'l interest: Ohio sues two O.C. real estate firms over appraisals Appraisers pressured to inflate home values.
Thursday, June 07, 2007. MI: Builders getting out of the MI Consumer Protection Act Liss v. Lewiston-Richards Inc; dissenting opinions quite interesting.
Thursday, June 07, 2007. NY; Nat'l interest: Report details problems; seller's disclosure contradicts findings Before local couple sold "mold house" to woman whose life and credit were ruined by the purchase, two prospective buyers paid for home inspection report that detailed house's laundry list of shortcomings.
Thursday, June 07, 2007. US: Reader comments on immigration article, homebuilders' lobbying Link to article also. Comments are interesting.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. OK: Man charged with home repair fraud Mark Wayne Shaver charged.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. FL: Cape builder removes fixtures R. Fry Builders
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. FL: Sky High Controversy Toll Brothers wants to build closer to nesting Bald Eagle than law allows.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. MA: Telling It Like It Is Homeowner will stand tall and fight…even among tremendous adversity. Ongoing story about Rich Builders, owned by John Rich which will air another part this Fri June 8th.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. TX: Ryland Trouble Homeowner's site about bad experience with builder.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. TX: Disgruntled Ryland homeowner turns Internet into soapbox After builder didn't repair 'cracks wide enough to stick a hand in,' homeowner created website, featuring photos and inspection report.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. MD: Conflict of interest on planning board? ‘‘Any applicant that works in the land development industry in Montgomery County or even in adjacent jurisdictions, there could be a perception of conflict of interest,” Goldstein said. One finalist is a custom home builder. Another is a real estate investor. A third has been a developer in the past.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. TX: Live Oak residents say their new homes are falling apart New homes by Ryland falling apart and/or flooding.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. DE: Once-legal debris pits give homeowners that sinking feeling Builders burried construction trash, trees, etc, and built over the pits. Houses, yards, and driveways sink when the material decomposes. State has cleanup program but homeowners are on waiting list for years. Very expensive repair.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. KY: Squeaky wheel gets the grease Roads uncompleted, lawns terrible, cracked sidewalks, windows not caulked and stucco that’s falling off: WKB Properties homes in Troon development.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. US: DR Horton lowered to negative Moody's Investors Service changed outlook on D.R. Horton to negative from stable, indicating company's debt ratings are likely to be lowered into junk territory over next 12 to 18 months.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. US: Homebuilders storm the Hill After enjoying years of unbridled growth, many homebuilders say they're now sinking along with the subprime lending market. So 1,300 of them are in Washington today to ask for help... (What happened to industry's cry to 'keep big govt out of our lives?' --Ed.)
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. CA: Bayview Hunters Point residents want moratorium on shipyard work Toxins: development of former shipyard by developer Lennar Corp.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. CA: Lennar Corp has bought some SF Board of Supervisors with blood money Lennar Corp. has distributed millions of dollars in the Bay Area and especially in San Francisco buying the votes of some very corrupt City officials.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. FL: HOUSE OF LIES (Update to news stories dating back to last year) Miami mayor: Ban troubled housing contractor, Cazo Construction.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. Canada: Advocate named to protect new home buyers Levy, an award-winning journalist and lawyer who retired from the newspaper last fall, is now the consumers' representative on the Tarion board of directors. Tarion regulates builders and administers the new home warranty program.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. International: Spain's Housing Crash Ghost Towns Appear in Spain as Decade-Long Boom Ends: (many parallels to U.S. housing market)
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. US: Executives Cashing In Shares At Homebuilder NVR I think it indicates that [executives] think it's the peak of the stock for quite some time," said Jack Adamo, who edits a weekly independent newsletter that follows insider transactions.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. US: Is a subprime storm brewing? Market corrections are rarely easy for the people involved.
Wednesday, June 06, 2007. NC: UPDATE: Builders forgiving loans AG says were illegal At least three of the builders Hall worked with cut a deal with the Attorney General’s office. (Follow up to articles posted earlier this week.)
Tuesday, June 05, 2007. AZ; TX: Robson Unfair Home buyer's bad experience with Robson Communities
Tuesday, June 05, 2007. NH: Builder charged with certificate forgery Aaron Fielder, d/b/a Frontline Construction, arrested for forging certificate of occupancy on house that failed inspection.
Tuesday, June 05, 2007. FL: House built to defy a Category 5 hurricane By acting as his own contractor, he will be able to build the home for about what it would cost to hire a contractor and build a normal home of comparable size.
Tuesday, June 05, 2007. US: Subprime fiasco exposes manipulation by brokerages Hustling risky mortgages.
Tuesday, June 05, 2007. NY: Westchester wants tougher contractor law New law could trigger higher fines and seizure of contractor's truck and tools.
Chased out by mold
A young couple flee their new home, fearing that is where their son's illnesses originated.
By Jocelyn Wiener -- Bee Staff
The Hamres' legal struggle began then, with Ryan stationed hundreds of miles away in Miramar, providing support for the war in Iraq. Every night, Suzanne talked to him on the phone about Tyler's health and their financial problems. Ryan felt outraged. And helpless. "This is the issue that really sticks in my craw," Graves said. "The easiest thing (Jack Wilson Construction) could have done from the beginning was to find a suitable place for the Hamres to live, and they didn't do that."
Want to help?
Donations may be sent to the following location: * The Schools Financial Credit Union c/o the Hamre Family P.O. Box 51500 Sacramento CA 95851

Tuesday, November 18, 2003. California: Schwarzenegger Halts Pending Regulations Lobbyists for California homebuilders applauded the governor's order Monday."The ones he asked to have reviewed are the ones that may be affecting the performance of business in California, and affecting the health and strength of the California economy," said Tim Coyle, vice president for governmental affairs for the California Building Industry Association. "It's the pebbles, not the boulder," added Coyle, attributing California's "hostile business climate" to a steady buildup of small state regulations. Coyle declined comment on which regulations homebuilders want dropped. But the industry, which aims to build 187,000 homes and apartments in California this year, often expresses dissatisfaction with environmental rules.

Friday, October 10, 2003. California. KB Home: Schwarzenegger Transition Team [includes chairman of KB Home] Eli Broad, Los Angeles, chairman of AIG SunAmerica, founder and chairman of KB Home and founder of the Broad Foundation.

Thursday, September 25, 2003. Texas: On shaky ground. A new University of North Texas study shows that, in recent years, more and more homes here have been built on soil that's less than ideal for urban development. Williams' study concludes that concrete-slab foundations are particularly prone to crack or break when soil expands. But builders use them anyway to save money, he said.

Wednesday, September 24, 2003. Texas. Grand Homes.: Survey can help potential homeowners avoid heartache The builder, Grand Homes, has made some repairs over the past year. They did not return News 8's calls for a response concerning the condition of Misich's house or a response to the J.D. Power survey, which placed Grand Homes at the bottom of its customer satisfaction list.
Thursday, May 22, 2003. California: KB Home project picketed Dispute over the use of non-union labor held up cement work Wednesday at the Seaside Highlands development.
Wednesday, May 21, 2003. California: Lawsuit targets KB Home project The lawsuit says KB Home representatives told the City Council on May 4, 1998, that the development would include a mix of affordable and higher-priced homes starting at below $200,000. The city paid the federal government $5.1 million for the 107-acre property in July 2002 and sold the land to KB. The lawsuit says KB paid a token amount of $1, though KB says the price was $6 million. Renneisen said that no matter which amount is correct, city taxpayers were shortchanged. The lawsuit says KB is in line to receive "approximately $115 million pure cash windfall."
Monday, May 12, 2003. California: Building Safety Week recognizes importance of safe construction If a builder builds a house and does not make its construction firm, and the house collapses and causes the death of the owner, that builder shall be put to death. That excerpt from the code of Hammurabi serves as an example of what building code enforcement was like almost 4,000 years ago.
Saturday, May 10, 2003. California: P.M. Update: SEC files lawsuit against Fresno homebuilder. The Securities and Exchange Commission filed a civil lawsuit against a Fresno homebuilder Thursday for allegedly defrauding investors out of $5.1 million.
Friday, May 09, 2003.
 Residents Decry Shoddy Homes ANTIOCH (KRON) -- HADD Director, Sandy Lopez, meets with distressed Antioch Homeowners and KRON Consumer Unit. When you buy a new home, you don't think about repair work. Well, think again. Half of all new homes come with some trouble. Tonight, Contact 4 looks at a Bay Area development whose homeowners are complaining loudly. Their builder isn't the worst. The problems are the kind shared by new homeowners everywhere. The difference here is homeowners are fighting back. Together.
Wednesday, September 10, 2003. PA, National interest: Realty fraud discussion Saturday at ESU Wilson hopes the officials sitting on the panel will assure the public that builders, appraisers and mortgage brokers accused of fraudulent home-sale practices will finally and swiftly be prosecuted, more than two years after the situation was exposed..."This thing is downright rotten," said Wilson. "I have never seen a cover-up so effective."
Monday, September 08, 2003. NATIONAL, From "Forbes.": Home Builders Raise Roof On CEO Pay The U.S. housing industry is showering its executives with huge pay packages just as economic signals are flashing that the industry is headed for a slowdown. Last year, the median total compensation awarded a housing sector chief executive was $6.2 million, up 33% over 2001. Not exactly chicken feed. Top executives pulled down anywhere from $10.5 million to $26 million apiece.
Monday, September 08, 2003. Florida: Pines man arrested in connection with shoddy construction in Miami-Dade The arrest of a Pembroke Pines resident after an investigation into building code violations should be the first of several, according to Miami-Dade County Inspector General Christopher Mazzella's office. According to Mazzella, investigators with the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office and the Miami-Dade building and zoning departments found a "widespread scheme" by past and present county employees, building contractors and others to violate codes designed to protect the public from shoddy construction.
Wednesday, September 03, 2003. National: Insiders are bailing on home-builder stocks Is the housing boom doomed?
Tuesday, September 02, 2003. CA: Fresno man admits to $5m federal fraud charges A Fresno home builder admitted Friday that he cheated investors out of more than $5 million by luring them into purchasing nonexistent securities.
Tuesday, September 02, 2003. California: Builder Is Indicted in Fraud Case An Orange County home builder was charged Wednesday with diverting $340,000 in construction funds for his own use and unlawfully selling homes at a development in Altadena that was left unfinished.
Monday, September 01, 2003. Florida, National importance: Law Can Hold You Responsible For Builders' Mistakes OVIEDO, Fla. -- Action 9 uncovers an outrageous example of how Florida's contractor lien law holds you responsible for a builder's mistakes.
Friday, August 29, 2003. AZ, National importance: Developers coming under fire "If they'd spend $1,500 to $2,000 to build each house right, they wouldn't have to spend an extra $10,000 on insurance. Then they just pass on the cost to the home buyer."
Thursday, August 28, 2003. Florida: Developer Faces Mold Suit Millennium Partners is wrapping up an extensive clean-up and relocation effort at its new Ritz-Carlton project in Washington, where it says faulty plumbing spawned an outbreak of mold. Residents sued the New York-based developer, saying the black, inky fungus caused health problems and forced them to abandon their luxury units.
Tuesday, August 26, 2003. Florida: Breaking The Mold By profession, Lipsey is a toxicologist a person who studies poisons.
Friday, August 22, 2003. CA: Hesperia home builders doing business despite indictments Paul J. Peterson, of San Bernardino, and William P. Peterson, of Riverside, were arrested by the FBI earlier this month and indicted. The pair allegedly developed a scheme using FHA loans to defraud the government, according to Laura Bosley, FBI spokeswoman.
Friday, August 22, 2003. Wisconsin, NATIONAL interest: Nice house. Are you sure it?s not rotting? After spending thousands of years perfecting construction techniques that protect us and our belongings from water, Kay believes we have taken a step back in the interest of saving time and money.
Friday, August 22, 2003. WI (National interest): Legislators Inspect Home Inspection Bill Shoddy Workmanship Creates Homes That Fail Code Requirements
Thursday, August 21, 2003. Nationa. KB Home: Memorandum Of Law Of Amicus Federal Trade Commission Timothy D. Pruitt v. Kaufman and Broad Home Corp., et al. (So. Dist. Of Texas) Memorandum Of Law Of Amicus Federal Trade Commission [PDF 137KB]
Thursday, August 21, 2003. National: FTC Sides with KB Home in a brief to the court. (yet has taken no action to enforce sanctions on KB) In its brief, the staff of the FTCs Office of General Counsel advised the court that the plaintiff has no standing to enforce either the 1991 consent decree or the 1979 administrative decree
Monday, August 18, 2003. National.: Unhappy home buyers get 'HADD' Sixty-eight-year-old retired schoolteacher Nancy Seats is on a mission to put the screws to home builders who she says rip off new home buyers by building substandard housing and shirking repair responsibilities. As president of Homeowners Against Deficient Dwellings, a national consumer advocacy group, Seats manages 37 volunteer representatives who help homeowners resolve disputes with builders.
Monday, August 18, 2003. California: New home nightmares That's when Skipper-Lopez joined other new homeowners around the country to form what is believed to be the first national advocacy organization for buyers of defective new homes. Skipper-Lopez said such advocacy groups are needed to fight a powerful industry that generally has lawmakers, agencies and inspectors on their side. Builders know the cost of litigation to the consumer might be more than the impact of the defects or a countersuit, so many homeowners simply back off, she said.
Saturday, August 16, 2003. MADERA, California: Grand Jury: get firm, aggressive Great older story, but incentive for homeowners to report lack of enforcement to their local grand jury. Madera is home to HADD Director, Sandy Skipper-Lopez MADERA Madera County has a reputation as a place where builders can do about anything and generally get away with it, says the Grand Jury. And the jury wants it to stop. In its final report, issued in December, the jury admonishes county officials to stop tolerating the contracting worlds shortcuts in the name of monetary economy.
Thursday, August 14, 2003. California: Developer arrested by FBI The owner of a former custom home builder in Hesperia, and his sales agent brother were arrested by the FBI last week.
Thursday, August 14, 2003. Wisconsin: Homeowners Seek State Investigation of Homebuilder (With Video) People living in a subdivision in the Fox Valley are asking the state to investigate claims they are making against a home builder. Thirty-five homeowners met Wednesday night, accusing Creative Custom Homes of failing to make good on repairs.
Wednesday, August 13, 2003. Texas.: Say it ain't Mold Joe! Closed doors shroud Farmers victory It was illegal for legislators to accept political donations during the regular session. But soon after the June 2 adjournment, political giving resumed, and the Farmers PAC made contributions to several legislators by June 30. They included $3,000 to Taylor, $3,000 to Seaman, $2,000 to Nixon, and $2,000 to Sen. Kip Averitt, R-Waco, one of the five Senate conferees.
Wednesday, August 13, 2003. Alabama: Home Builder Arrested For Moldy House The upstairs toilet was leaking raw sewage down the kitchen wall...the builder responsible for this work was arrested. Edwin McKinney Williams is charged with building without a state license. Williams was released after posting 500 dollars bond.
Wednesday, August 13, 2003. NJ: Surprise guilty plea in house-flip scheme NEWARK -- Former real estate investor Gary Grieser pleaded guilty yesterday to participating in a multimillion-dollar land-flipping scheme centered in Monmouth County that used straw buyers, phony credit credentials and inflated appraisals to get undeserved mortgage loans on more than 200 real estate transactions.
Wednesday, August 13, 2003. National interest: Con Man Gets 10 Years in Prison At his sentencing, Collins insisted he had $180 to his name. However, bank records show thousands of dollars moving in and out of his account. Collins said the money belonged to his employer, a home builder.
Wednesday, August 13, 2003. WI--National interest: Property Transfer Loophole Draws Ire After the law became effective in March 2002, "many very expensive property transfers have occurred without the state or counties collecting so much as a dime," she said. "It is my fear that state and local governments are being denied millions of dollars due to this loophole."
Wednesday, August 13, 2003. Texas: Mold hypocrisy leaves many homeowners smoldering. SPECIAL TO THE AMERICAN-STATESMANThis hypocrisy is not limited to Nixon. In 2001, the attorney general's office in Lubbock was evacuated and remediated due to mold contamination at the owner's expense. And in 1995, the Texas Governor's Mansion was remediated at a cost of $50,000 to taxpayers. So while Nixon's family, the governor's family, and the employees of the attorney general were safe from the hazards of toxic mold, hundreds of Texas families, looking for help from their leaders, were left, out in the mold.
Sunday, August 10, 2003. Texas: Just a friendly little Texas mold claim? "Little people" often have to give up or take their beefs against insurance companies and corporate America to the courthouse, if they can afford the hassle, have a complaint worthy of a lawyer's time and aren't preempted by still another "tort reform" restriction. Nixon should try wearing their shoes for a while.
Sunday, August 10, 2003. Texas: SPECIAL TREATMENT. Handling of lawmaker's mold insurance claim questioned State Rep. Joe Nixon, the legislator behind proposed caps on medical malpractice damages embraced by insurance companies and the recipient of more than $300,000 in mold damage insurance payouts on a home that tax records show has a market value of $369,500, is "incensed" anyone would think his influence is for sale. Nixon may find many Texans have trouble not thinking that.
Sunday, August 10, 2003. Texas: Nixon collected as Texans were left out in the mold This hypocrisy is not limited to Nixon. In 2001, the Attorney General's Office in Lubbock was evacuated and remediated because of mold contamination at the owner's expense. And in 1995, the Texas Governor's Mansion was remediated at a cost of $50,000 to taxpayers. So, while Nixon's family, Perry's family and the employees of Attorney General John Cornyn were safe from the hazards of toxic mold, hundreds of Texas families, looking for help from their leaders, were left, out in the mold.
Thursday, August 07, 2003. Texas: Did Farmers Buy Off Nixon? Farmers Insurance paid state Rep. Joe Nixon, R-Houston -- the sponsor of the controversial tort-reform package passed by the Lege this spring -- for a claim not covered under his homeowners insurance policy so that the company could secure Nixon as a "friend of Farmers during the legislative session," according to an internal Farmers e-mail
Monday, August 04, 2003. California: New effort launched to limit home defect suits The current law: The Legislature last year passed SB 800 by state Sen. John Burton of San Francisco, which covers houses built after Jan. 1 of this year. The law says that before filing a lawsuit, a homeowner must notify the homebuilder of the defect, giving the builder a chance to inspect and repair the problem. If the parties can't reach agreement, Cammarota said, the matter goes to mediation.
Wednesday, July 30, 2003. California: Placerville Family Finds Dream Home Valueless and Unlivable Because the home is in blatant violation of building codes, it has been declared to have no value by the county tax assessor. Building inspectors have declared it uninhabitable.
Monday, July 28, 2003. National: Homeowner Boards Blur Line of Who Rules Roost Cities and counties, which are reluctant to raise taxes to pay for services, have in many cases stepped aside, allowing associations to become de facto governments with increasing authority over daily life.
Saturday, July 26, 2003. National: Unfairness Incorporated: Many corporations that portray themselves as victims of unjustified class actions have, in fact, engaged in unfair and harmful practices that would not have been corrected if consumers had not been represented in class-action lawsuits.
Saturday, July 26, 2003. KS, National interest: Class action `deform' in the era of Enron Make a mental note. Whenever you see the word "reform" attached to legislation in this Congress, read it as "deform" and hold onto your rights and your wallet.
Thursday, July 24, 2003. National interest: Arbitration Knot If someone told you that you had to sign away some of your constitutional rights to buy a car, use a credit card or get health insurance, would you agree to do it? Chances are, you already have.
Wednesday, July 23, 2003. California. KB Home: More Antioch homebuilders sued ANTIOCH - Two more Antioch homebuilders are facing allegations that they ignored warnings and city building codes and built homes on defective foundations.
Tuesday, July 22, 2003. Texas. KB Home: Angry KB Home Owners Speak Out GREAT story on CBS News. Over 180 complaints at the Texas Attorney Generals Office.
Monday, July 21, 2003. National: The arbitration trap:How consumers pay for 'low cost' justice Consumers Union thinks that a fair arbitration process should be voluntary on the part of both parties to a contract and not imposed on consumers unilaterally. Rules governing the process should be clearly disclosed. Arbitration fees for indigent consumers should be waived. Finally, no arbitration clause should limit an individual's ability to join with other similarly harmed consumers in a class-action lawsuit.
Thursday, July 17, 2003. NATIONAL: Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae refuse to cooperate in inquiry WASHINGTON (AP) Officials at Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae have failed to cooperate in a congressional inquiry into federal oversight of the government-sponsored housing finance companies, charges a House subcommittee chairman.
Wednesday, July 16, 2003. National. KB Home.: Press Release:National homebuilder's new arbitration policy just more deception.KB Homes new arbitration policy submitted to the FTC this month, is similar to offering a free carpet upgrade, while knowing its real use is to cover up a severely cracked foundation.
Wednesday, July 16, 2003. Nevada: Right-to-repair not likely to bring insurance rates down While the flow of construction defect cases may soon slow to a trickle with last month's passage of the right-to-repair bill, Senate Bill 241, insurance rates aren't likely drop anytime soon.
Wednesday, July 16, 2003. California : Kaufman and Broad--Securities Litigation UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA "The Litigation was commenced on August 21, 1992. The Complaints in the litigation asserts claims for violations by Defendants of Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and rule 10b-5 of the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Complaint names as defendants Kaufman and Broad and certain of its officers and directors. Plaintiffs allege public filings and other statements by Kaufman and Broad contained material misstatements and/or omissions of fact relating to Kaufman and Broad, its finances, results from operations and future business prospects, the effect of with caused the Plaintiffs and other purchasers of Kaufman and Broad common stock and special common stock during a defined period of time to pay more for their Kaufman and Broad stock than they otherwise would have paid."
Saturday, July 12, 2003. National: Coast Weekly "The Mini-Mansion Kings" "Reportedly under pressure from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), KB sent out letters last week to tens of thousands of families who'd bought their homes. The letter released the buyers from a clause in the purchase contracts--known as a binding-arbitration clause--that prevented buyers from taking KB to court because of repair and warranty disagreements."
Friday, July 11, 2003. North Carolina. Ryland Homes: Action 9: Home Construction Mess When Swindell refused to close on the home, the builder, Ryland Homes, kept her $2,000 earnest deposit.
Friday, July 11, 2003. California. KB Home: Home Out of Range 07/10/03 "I'm appalled at what's gone on in this," Farr says. "KB has taken advantage of the city."
Thursday, July 10, 2003. CA and National: Just a Patch or a Plague "A $2,000 water-damage job that's not properly done can swell to a $10,000 mold-removal job,"
Monday, July 07, 2003. Ohio: Who's to blame for new house riddled with mold? Most of those lovely windows leaked. The builder, Imbus Builders, Inc., came and worked on them. "About four or five trips," Frank guesses. "They must have used a case of caulk." Some carpeting had been drenched and smelled musty.
Monday, July 07, 2003. California: Man says city ruined his home "My home is not worth anything now," said Watson, a prominent physician known for his volunteer work in the community and his work at Watson Wellness Center, named after his father, James A. Watson, a retired doctor.
Wednesday, July 02, 2003. National. KB Home: KB Home drops arbitration clause Good article from the Austin American Statesman. Has links to the letter sent to homeowners, to the FTC, and a copy of their warranty. MUST READ!
Tuesday, July 01, 2003. National. KB Home: KB Home frees buyers from binding arbitration Los Angeles-based KB Home is volunteering to release thousands of its home buyers from a binding-arbitration provision, the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday.
Tuesday, July 01, 2003. National. KB Home: Builder KB Home Tells FTC That Arbitration for Warranty Disputes Not Binding"They have been under a court order (from the FTC) since 1991 and have literally misled thousands of consumers as to their rights and remedies," said Oliver-Parrott, a lawyer for Timothy Pruitt, who filed the Laredo lawsuit against KB Home.
Tuesday, July 01, 2003. National. KB Home: KB Home's letter to the Federal Trade Commission on discontinuing binding arbitration This is a copy in MSWord format of the letter send by KB Home to the FTC concerning discontinuing the use of binding arbitration. NOTE: This does NOT include discontinuing the use of mandatory arbitration.
Tuesday, July 01, 2003. National. KB Home: Federal Trade Commission consent decree. This is a copy in MSWord format of the consent decree signed in 1991 against Kaufman and Broad (now KB Home).
Tuesday, July 01, 2003. National. KB Home: Federal Trade Commission complaint in 1978 This is a copy in MSWord format of the original complaint against Kaufman and Broad (now KB Home).
Tuesday, July 01, 2003. National: KB Home revamps dispute policy (CNN) NEW YORK (Reuters) - Homebuilder KB Home is releasing tens of thousands of its home buyers from binding arbitration provisions in their purchase agreements, which means they will be free to bring any disputes forward in the courts, according to a published report Tuesday.
Tuesday, July 01, 2003. National. KB Home: KB Home changes contract In a break with past practices, KB Home told the Federal Trade Commission on Monday that it will tell its customers a warranty dispute settled through arbitration will not necessarily be binding.
Tuesday, June 24, 2003. CA, National  KB Home: "Stucco Shock" (article includes more than stucco) Many of this valley's best-known builders have let problems slide to the point that homeowners have been forced to sue.
Sunday, June 22, 2003. California. Centex Homes.: Centex suit in question A decision to certify the suit as a class action would bring everyone who bought a home in the Centex Homes development southeast of Wyle known as Stoneridge Estates before the suit was filed into the litigation unless they explicitly choose to opt out.
Friday, June 06, 2003. California. Centex Homes.: Centex sued over concrete The residents complained the concrete foundations beneath the homes, which are less than 10 years old, have deteriorated badly. In some cases, the foundations are crumbling or cracking, and in other cases, pieces of concrete have popped out.
Wednesday, June 04, 2003. California: Homebuilders Asked For It Enron and others have robbed citizens of retirement security. Unscrupulous homebuilders and their lobbying efforts are taking what little we have left to rely on as average citizens, the family home. When construction defects, predatory lending schemes and arbitration are party to this investment, it becomes a painful, expensive burden for the homeowner and their family.
Tuesday, June 03, 2003. National: What Kind of Dirt Do They Have On You? Joe's Corner [Scroll down to the article] I recently recall twenty years ago when some police agencies were dismissive of MADD. A few schools and PTA groups were interested but MADD did not amount to much. Today, MADD is the DRIVING FORCE in the nation in forcing stronger drunk driving laws. Before you dismiss HADD as yet another small group of nut cases, take a minute to stop and think about this: What if HADD becomes as big as MADD? What if HADD reaches the tipping point and becomes a real deal?
Sunday, June 01, 2003. NV: Judge Dismisses Builder D.R. Horton's Lawsuit against Homeowner Coalition Judge David Wall granted a motion late Wednesday to dismiss a lawsuit filed by home builder D.R. Horton against Safe Homes Nevada, a coalition of homeowners, based upon protections of the fair reporting privilege.