LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — Two Youngsville families want to share their stories after years of nightmares in what was supposed to be their dream homes.
Their hope is to alert other families and stop them from making the same mistakes; and now, their stories will be told in the courtroom after a class action suit has been filed.
Justin Pollock, his wife Anna, and their four children moved down south from Boston for work and have lived in their Youngsville home since 2013. But, it wasn’t long before their dream home became a nightmare.
“Right away when we bought the home, we started having warranty issues with the house, mostly with windows leaking and moisture and humidity problems in the house”, Pollock said.
The same goes for neighbor Carissa Harrison and her family.
“They had to come in and change the duct work repeatedly because it was leaking condensation. They replaced plenum after plenum. They came and they added a dehumidifier, they would come in and they would put this glue or mud whatever they used would just start dripping down like sweat and water”, Harrison said.
That was a quote from Carissa Harrison back in March of 2021. She and her family have since relocated out of state— but they drove back to show us the problem still hasn’t been repaired more than a year later.
“We’ve filed warranty claims over and over and over and continuously they would come in and try to fix the issue, but it has been nothing but band-aids.”
Both the Pollocks and the Harrisons lived in the same neighborhood in D.R. Horton built homes along with sub-contractor Bell Mechanical.
While the companies have come out and made repairs, these D.R. Horton homeowners say the issues seem to be never ending.
“In the fall off 2016 they replaced that pair of windows and took it upon themselves to also replace our foyer window and on New Year’s eve of 2016 going into ‘17, we had water leaking so bad out of the foyer window, that wasn’t leaking in the first place, that it was behind the paint and it was also coming out from the inside of the light switches to the point where it scared us enough that we turned off the circuit breakers in the house because it became a fire hazard and everything was arcing inside of it,” Pollock told us.
The Pollock’s daughter, Rachel, also developed asthma due to the mold growth.
Her doctor connected the asthma to exposure to Aspergillus. Air quality and mold tests of the home reveal an exact match between her disease and the mold growing in the house.
“For the first six months or so she had to be on a nebulizer three times a day, having breathing problems” Justin said.
His wife, Anna, followed with ” We had to get an inhaler. We had to move out and go to a hotel for two months.”
A few doors down the road at the Harrison’s, in October of 2020, Carissa was learning a huge reason they had experienced so many problems with their brand-new homes.
The following is the transcription of a phone call between Mrs. Harrison and Leslie Gulliksen, D.R. Horton’s City Manager of Louisiana West Division.
Carissa: “Are y’all not building the same house anymore, this (dehumidifier) should have been installed since day one.”
Leslie: “No, it has nothing to do with us. I’ll tell you what it is: it’s the code that we have to build to. We build to the federal mandate code, and we’re regulated by federal law. We build to that code, that code was not designed for very humid markets and the man who wrote that law even says that it’s not designed for very humid markets but, we still have to adhere to what the ready of the country has been mandated to do.”
That phone call is now a key piece of evidence in the latest development: a 36-page class action lawsuit filed on behalf of a Lafayette Parish couple; and an unknown number of other homeowners who find themselves in similar situations after purchasing a home built in south Louisiana by D.R. Horton.
10 attorneys are handling the case; one of them, Lance Beal, says their ultimate goal is to ensure these hardworking middle-class families receive justice for not receiving the product they were promised when the home was purchased. It’s about holding DR Horton accountable for their actions and inactions. Since the suit was filed hundreds of D.R. Horton homeowners have already called to join the class action suit.
As of Tuesday March 16th, email requests for comment from DR Horton have gone unanswered.