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ABC Special Report
Investigation: New Home Heartbreak
Trump - NAHB Homebuilders Shoddy Construction and Forced Arbitration
Dallas Morning News -TBYR in the news again
Monday, 27 December 2004

Letters: Let's build higher standards
Can't stop now
By Carol Becka
Frisco residents fully understand that if nothing is done "now" …to provide protection from home builders' careless and inferior construction of new homes, all Frisco residents will ultimately pay the price in lost property values and increased taxes to subsidize the city for lost revenue from devalued homes...

Whom do you believe?
By Andrew Ellender
Home buyers expect the truth from home builders. We certainly did… Who would oppose a new-home disclosure besides someone who wants to hide the truth? I believe an informed consent requirement would be a welcome addition in any city… Bonding also makes sense for the home building industry… Dr. Becka does not want what happened to his family and others, like mine, to happen to anyone else…

Dallas Morning News
Letters: Let's build higher standards

Saturday, December 25, 2004
Can't stop now - The Take Back Your Rights Committee would like to respond to several comments made at night Frisco City Council meeting held Tuesday. The comments made by the home builders representative that the petitions for these two new city charter amendments are unconstitutional are comical.

How can home builders justify these remarks when they routinely and regularly infringe upon citizens' constitutional rights in the conduct of daily business?

We are calling for the option to completely remove this part of the contract through our informed consent amendment. Giving the consumer the education to make an informed decision and the option to delete this part of the contract and warranty agreement helps the consumer significantly.

Armed with the knowledge of predatory business practices, the new home buyer will be less vulnerable to the pitfalls of purchasing a new home.

Over 10 percent of Frisco voters – 9,300 petition signatures – call for home builders to be accountable for their product and to be truthful in their disclosures. Now that the signatures have been certified, the election must take place. That's the law. It's the democratic process. The citizens have spoken! No discussion, complaints or whining from home builders can stop the legislative process.

Your vote in support of these amendments will stop this homebuilder bad behavior at the grass-roots level and return lost rights to Frisco citizens.

Frisco voters already know the horror stories of irresponsible builders and shoddy home construction either personally or from the news. Home builders must be held accountable by way of the surety bond amendment; they will also agree that home builders must have integrity and provide an honest new-home purchase disclosure by way of the informed consent charter amendment.

Frisco residents fully understand that if nothing is done "now" – at the May election – to regain lost citizens' rights, to provide consumer awareness, and to provide protection from home builders' careless and inferior construction of new homes, all Frisco residents will ultimately pay the price in lost property values and increased taxes to subsidize the city for lost revenue from devalued homes.

Perceptive voters aren't going to gamble the city's future on home builders' misleading ravings and a state commission that has no consumer credibility.
Carol Becka, Frisco

Whom do you believe?
Re: "Better ways to hold builders accountable," by Robert Morris.

Home buyers expect the truth from home builders. We certainly did. My wife and I purchased a new home in Little Elm, a town near Frisco.

Before buying the house, I asked about an access road that backed up to the property. The builder's "truth" was that the little road behind the property would be only an access road to our subdivision.

In fact, my builder knew that the little road would one day be a six-lane major highway. Now, that six-lane highway is near my back yard – the same back yard where my children and their friends play, the same back yard where we have family barbeques and picnics.

When construction on the highway is finished, we won't be able to hear our children laugh as they play in our back yard. We won't be able to enjoy outdoor activities due to noise, safety concerns and pollution from the estimated 46,000 vehicles per day zooming past our property.

As someone who is concerned about my neighbors in similar predicaments, I think that TakeBackYourRights.com in Frisco is wonderful. Dr. David Becka and his family know the truth. Dr. Becka does not want what happened to his family and others, like mine, to happen to anyone else.

Who would oppose a new-home disclosure besides someone who wants to hide the truth? I believe an informed consent requirement would be a welcome addition in any city, particularly in Frisco, where so many new homes are being built each week. Bonding also makes sense for the home building industry. Most of my acquaintances think new-home builders are bonded. They are shocked to find out builders do not have to show any financial accountability or have a license to construct a new house.

Mr. Morris noted that the newly formed Texas Residential Construction Commission requires home builders to be registered. But a registration process is quite different than a license.

For example, if all the people who wanted to drive a car simply filled out a form stating they'd like to drive a car, that would be a driver's registration. But I sincerely hope that the people zooming past my back yard have a driver's license, not a driver's registration.

Also, my family learned firsthand that the TRCC does not protect consumers. I received a letter from the TRCC notifying me that my problem did not "fall under the jurisdiction of the commission."

Plus, I looked up the fees with the Web link that was included in the article and learned that Dr. Becka accurately stated that it costs a family $1,000 to register a complaint with the TRCC about a major structural problem. The fee schedule online says a third-party inspection fee for workmanship and materials costs $350, a fee for structural inspection costs $450, and an inspection fee for a structural defect found is $550 (paid in addition to the other fee for obtaining a recommendation of repair).

As a consumer, which truth will you believe? A home-building industry that will lie to close the deal or someone like Dr. David Becka? I wholeheartedly choose Dr. Becka and TakeBackYourRights.com.

Andrew Ellender, Little Elm


 
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