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Friday, August 24, 2007

Is Your Home A Lemon- A Texas Consumer Wages War Against Builder, Local Government and Housing Industry

We've all heard the horror stories about consumers who are unlucky enough to purchase a defective car, truck, suv, motorcycle or mini-van, but what sort of protection could you be entitled to if your home, the largest investment you will probably ever make, turns out to be a lemon?

Texas Grandmother and former conservative Jordan Fogel found out the hard way. Bob and Jordan Fogel, senior citizens, bought their "dream" home in April 2002 for $368,564, investing nearly everything they had. The first disappointment came on the day they moved in. Bob Fogal, weary from unpacking, trudged upstairs to relax in his new whirlpool bath. When he got out, he pulled the plug and "all 100 gallons of that water came down through the dining room ceiling, into the light fixtures, down the columns, onto my dining room table and Oriental rugs," Jordan recalls. "And I just started screaming."

That was only the beginning of a myriad of problems, the bulk of which were related to water seepage issues in many areas of the home, causing water damage and subsequently, rotting and mold. Thus began the Fogel's long and frustrating journey through the bureaucracy of local government, mandatory arbitration and an "old boys network" aka, the Texas Association of Builders.

The Fogel's buyers contract states that any issues concerning their new home's defects should be resolved through "mandatory, binding arbitration" which means that whatever the outcome of this reportedly objective 3rd party arbitration, the consumer is bound by the decision.

Mrs. Fogel became an outspoken advocate for an amendment to the states lemon law that would cover new homes and offer more consumer protection to buyers. That Bill HB 1038, Amendment 27 was brought before the Texas house on July27, 2007. It is through her zealous efforts that this amendment has even become a possibility.

If you are experiencing issues with your home, or suspect fraud involving the contract, contact Texas Lemon Law Firm.

Post information provided in part by TheConsumerist.com

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