Wednesday, June 6, 2007

They don't make 'em like they used to...

To think I've heard people say 'old homes have problems.' Well, most of the ones I've been in are built rather well, and provided their owners have taken even decent care of them, they're in pretty good shape today. Let's take a minute to dig a little deeper into what the unsuspecting recent transplants into Las Vegas have been told are the 'better thing to buy.'

I hate to admit it, but as I was also rather uninformed upon my relocation to Vegas two years ago, I'm still stuck in a home near Eastern & Anthem, in Granite Ridge subdivision, built by Lennar. Now, as of about 8 months ago word started getting around that as Lennar was so busy a few years ago (as were many new construction development companies), slapping up cookie cutter investor traps, *ahem*, I mean homes; that they made careless planning/construction errors rendering many of their homes unlivable (or unsellable unless you want to disclose you know it's messed up). Oops.

Apparently, either due to lack of planning, or perhaps in an attempt to save pennies on an overinflated dollar; the air conditioning units and the duct work running through the walls are about half the appropriate size for the square footage of the homes. So, how do you fix that? Apparently Lennar's solution is that residents are being forced to move out for up to 3 months while the under-supervised contractors are granted another crack at 'quality construction.' During the time one of my neighbors was living in a hotel for 1/4 of a year, I wandered in to check on what was happening. All the drywall in the house was being torn down so new duct work could be fished through the walls. The place looked like a slumlord's dream. It's done now, and at least the duct work & air units should be at the proper specs.

While there are many more stories of this particular builder's lack of foresight, I've heard other nightmare recounts from other friends in various 'new development areas' throughout the valley (one lady's home is sinking into the desert). In my opinion, I'd rather have a well built, well designed, architecturally interesting 'old home' that may need some updating, than a bland, 'I look just like my neighbor I never talk to because there's no sense of community here', new home that practically needs to be rebuilt due to profit hungry poor management during the initial blow & go.

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