Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Why we need a Homeowner's Bill of Rights: Stories from Washingtonians (Part VIII)

Welcome to the eighth installment in our special series counting down the hours remaining until Friday evening's 5 PM bill cutoff deadline, when this year's Homeowner's Bill of Rights legislation will expire unless voted on by the state House of Representatives. Each post in this series features stories from homeowners who have been victimized by negligent construction.

These are stories of Evergreen State families who have, through no fault of their own, lost their life’s savings, their health, their ability to finance their children’s college education, and their prosperity because there was a defect or problem with the workmanship of their home.

Countdown Clock: 9 Hours, 46 Minutes Remaining Until Cutoff

Senate Bill 6385, if enacted, would give the same rights that condo owners already enjoy to homeowners. It provides families with a recourse if their most valuable investment is damaged by contractor negligence. Under current law, homeowners get stuck with the bill for shoddy workmanship. There is no warranty, no protections in place to help those who have been victimized.

We urge you to join us in calling on House Speaker Frank Chopp to bring SB 6385 to the floor of the House of Representatives for a vote. If SB 6385 gets to the floor it is sure to pass - and Governor Chris Gregoire is ready to sign it.

But it has to make it out of the Rules Committee first.

We continue our countdown with Donald's story.
I will start at the beginning of my Reality experience and just state the facts from my lawsuit for all to see. First my contract was altered by [a representative of] Reality without my knowledge or approval and this eventually led to their price increase of $9,747.00 (with no justification, none). Second, the drawings that Reality based my home on were not designed to meet even minimum Building Code Requirements, and even if they had been, Reality did not follow those drawings, such as using 12'-0 floor joists instead of the drawing specified 34'-0 joists.

The framing subcontractor framed my home but was not licensed through Washington State L&I. Reality said they "didn't know", but one has to ask,why not? Third, they failed framing inspection four times over the next three month period, and finally "terminated the contract" with the home still in a failed condition.

I had to quit my job in the Seattle area and move to Grapeview and finish the home myself (along with my son, Brian). Less than a month after they left the site, they filed a lien on my home and then finally file a lawsuit as if I was the guilty party that breached the contract.

I can tell all that are interested to not sign a contract with Reality in which "Mandatory Arbitration" is a requirement. I think you will lose every time! And if you are smart you will run not just walk away from Reality's contract in general!
Here's how to get in touch with Speaker Chopp:

District Office:
444 NE Ravenna Blvd, Suite 106
Seattle, WA 98115
(206) 729-3223

Olympia Office:
339C Legislative Bldg.
PO Box 40600
Olympia, WA 98504-0600
(360) 786-7920

Toll-free Hotline: 1-800-562-6000
TTY (hearing impaired): 1-800-635-9993
Email: chopp.frank (at)


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