for the whole story, go to http://www.blackstoneversuspulte.com
Pulte is the largest builder in the nation with revenues in the first quarter of 1999 of $658.4 million.
The home owners, Jim & Martha Blackstone, closed on their Pulte home on June 20, 1997 and immediately began to have lots of problems with their Pulte home.
The Blackstones repeatedly showed the problems to Pulte and asked Pulte to fulfill their warranty over items such as:
Leaky basement. Everything down there smells like mold and mildew.
An exterior load bearing wall built on gravel. Eventually kinda sorta repaired by Pulte by cramming broken bricks and mortar under the wall while the Blackstones were out of town.
Form boards cemented into the foundation. This is where one of the walls has shifted and cracked all the way into the footing.
Raw sewage gushing out of the ground in the backyard. Imagine what it has smelled like in the back yard for the past two years?
Insulation that does not meet the local building codes and makes it impossible for the air conditioner to cool the home below 79 degrees on hot summer days. Imagine what it is like when Jim and Martha are trying to get their two little ones (both still in diapers) to take a nap in the hot, humid house? One recent repercussion of this is that the baby's room gets too cold at night (low 60's) since lows this time of year in Spartanburg are in the low 50's at night. In September, the heat must be cut on at night in to keep a 6 month old baby's room from getting too cold!!!!!!!
Leaky Crawl Space (several inches of standing water whenever it rains)
A fireplace that is not safe to use according to several inspectors who testified in court that the fireplace does not meet local building codes.
The termite bond was revoked because of the form boards in the foundation and excessive water drainage in and around the foundation wall.
After repeatedly showing Pulte the problems, and after repeated requests for Pulte to fulfill their warranty, the Blackstones received a letter from Mr. Mike Bartels, (Pulte Director of Construction in South Carolina) on June 19, 1998, that said "I am satisfied that all other issues have been satisfied and are within the acceptable building industry standards of the Pulte Home Corporation. If you wish to take further action, you may seek arbitration as detailed on page 7 of the Pulte Protection Plan".
The Blackstones had no choice but to file for binding arbitration as stipulated in the Blackstones' contract with Pulte.
The end result was that the Blackstones battled Pulte for almost two years & spent over $50,000 of their hard earned money in the litigation, and the arbitrator awarded the Blackstones $31,669.
The arbitrator did not award any re-imbursement to the Blackstones for their legal expenses or damaged personal property. On page 4 of the decision , the arbitrator wrote, "Each party shall be on its own costs, expenses, and attorney's fees.
More information can be seen at http://www.blackstoneversuspulte.com