Shea Homes Sued in Washington State
One of the country’s largest privately owned homebuilders has been sued by residents of a 55-and-over resort community in the Seattle area over poor-construction practices that caused thousands of dollars in damages to hundreds of houses.
More than 950 residents of a development called Trilogy at Redmond Ridge are represented in the suit against California-based Shea Homes. Among the claims, according to an article in The Seattle Times, is that Shea didn’t apply flashing around windows, and failed to install moisture barriers on garages.
By the time many homeowners discovered the problems, extensive repairs were needed to replace rotted wood. Possessions stored in their garages were ruined.
The lawsuit was filed earlier in October in a federal district court in Seattle. Lead attorney Steve Berman told the newspaper he’s seeking $30 million in damages and wants class-action status for the case.
“Shea intentionally omitted nearly all industry-standard methods for building homes to withstand our wet weather,” The Seattle Times quoted the lawsuit as saying. “And, even after its first homes suffered from various forms of water intrusion due to the substandard construction, Shea refused to tell its customers of the problems and continued building new homes with the same defects.”
Not the first time Shea has been in legal trouble
Shea Homes has already settled one class-action lawsuit involving mold issues with 850 Trilogy homeowners, the newspaper said. That 2012 case resulted in a $2.4 million settlement.
“We are prepared to defend this latest attempt to expand the litigation,” Shea Homes told the newspaper in a statement. “And we continue to work directly with our homeowners to resolve any issues they may have with their homes.”
Berman, however, told the newspaper that newly acquired emails and internal memos show Shea knew about the problems more than 10 years ago, before the houses were sold.
Shea has operations in a number of other states, including Trilogy “active lifestyle communities” in Arizona, California, Florida, North Carolina, Virginia, and Nevada.