Complaints against KB Home continue to mount. - WFLA News Channel 8

Complaints against KB Home continue to mount; Company says it is fixing problems

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KB Home, the nation's second-largest homebuilder, continues to deal with disgruntled homeowners who say the company sold them a defective house.

An 8-on-your-side investigation into shoddy KB construction in Tampa Bay led to an on-going criminal investigation by Florida's Attorney General Pam Bondi. Homeowners say they complained for years but received only band-aid repairs. Late last year, though, KB began extensive repairs of many developments, including Willowbrook, a condominium in Bradenton with leaks and collapsing balconies.

KB has said it is fixing problems that representatives call isolated, but homeowners in a Vero Beach neighborhood, Carriage Lake, say they're dealing with the same problems. Vero Beach is located on the east coast of Florida, in Indian River County.

KB has already repaired many of the homes at Carriage Lake and a spokeswoman says work continues on about 10 homes. One of those homeowners, Lauren Hill, says her experience with repairs have been a "nightmare." Her home was so poorly constructed that the living room and kitchen had to be gutted and rebuilt.

"It was a mess," she said. "It was horrible. I don't want anyone else to go through this.

Hill says KB ignored her complaints for months as she covered leaky windows with garbage bags to collect rain water. When the builder did respond, repairs took seven months, forcing the family to live upstairs.

"I had a coffee pot up there; I had a George Foreman grill," Hill said. "Everything I did had to be done up in the loft."

But now Hill has discovered mold around a window in her bedroom.

KB spokeswoman Cara Kane said the company plans to begin repairs on the window Monday. Kane said the numbers of homes being repaired shows how hard the company is working to make things right.

KB issued this statement:

"KB Home always responds to our homeowners' questions. If we find something wrong, we work with the homeowner to make it right. We are demonstrating this by the repair work that is wrapping up on several homes in our Carriage Lake community. Ms. Hill had repairs completed in 2012 and we are actively addressing a new claim she recently brought to our attention. KB Home's commitment is demonstrated by our actions in Carriage Lake, and we are working to resolve these homeowners' issues responsibly and to their satisfaction."

State Representative Debbie Mayfield says she's shocked by what she's seen in KB neighborhoods. Mayfield also chairs a legislative committee for the department of business and professional regulation. She said she wants Florida to stop KB from building more houses until they fix the ones that weren't built correctly.

"At some point, sometimes the state does have to step in and say, "Look, you guys, you're treating our residents wrong. You're the builder. This is what you agreed to do. The quality of construction should be there. So, fix the problem."

Mayfield says she's reached out to state investigators and wants to take KB contractors on a tour of Carriage Lake.

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