Urban Living was added as a defendant last month to a lawsuit filed in February by 8 plaintiffs against 2 companies run by Saeed Qazi and Saleem Qazi, both of whom are also being sued individually.
The suit revolves around 6 adjacent homes in the First Ward — 1919 through 1929 Johnson St. — built around 2008 by the Qazis and their companies, Zenith Urban Homes and Zenith Signature Homes. Once built, the homes were exclusively marketed and sold by Urban Living.
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Sawyer Heights Lawsuit
COMMENT OF THE DAY RUNNER-UP: MAKING OLDER HOMES SAFER “Ironically, all of the lawsuit-limiting legislation passed at the request of the home-building industry makes Texas one of the few states where a pre-existing home is a more secure investment than a new home. When the market begins to reflect this, which it will eventually, new home builders will regret it.” [jlawrence, commenting on The $58 Million Perry Home]
Allen Stanford’s international “banking” empire is falling apart. How’s his work as a Houston real estate developer holding up?
Stanford Development Corporation still owns a couple of units on the top floor of the Stanford Lofts, the 5-story East Downtown condo building topped with a starred tiara that the company completed in 2002, just a few blocks east of Minute Maid Park. But owning the condos didn’t prevent the condo owners association from filing a construction-defect lawsuit against the Stanford Lofts developers and builders in 2007, charging Stanford Development with “breach of contract, Deceptive Trade Practices, breach of warranty, fraud, and negligent design, construction, and supervision.”
The summary of problems with the building included in the original complaint is 9 pages long, and includes failure to meet building codes, wall cracks and leaks, structural movement, and a series of defects causing continuing problems with water infiltration. The repair estimate: more than $2 million.
The case has dragged on for some time. Attorneys for the Stanford Condo Owners Association complained that Stanford Development was dragging its feet, arguing last year in response to a stay request:
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The “Lemon Lady,” Houston grandmother Jordan Fogal, testifies colorfully against Texas homebuilder mandatory binding arbitration provisions to a congressional subcommittee this morning in Washington:
The first night in our new home, my husband decided to try out his new Jacuzzi tub on the third floor. When he pulled the plug, one hundred gallons of water crashed through our dining room ceiling. . . .
Well, this was not one overlooked plumbing connection, as my husband so desperately wanted to believe. It was a preview of coming attractions. Rainwater, from outside, sprayed us at the kitchen table. – The windows were installed upside down (our builder finally admitted this after three years). Our floors buckled and black spider-webs of mold crawled up our walls; the smell grew worse; then shower wall fell out and little puffballs grew out of the carpet. All the while, we had begged our builder to please fix our house.
We had the mold tested by an accredited laboratory, and they said they had never seen toxic readings that high in an inhabited dwelling.
The story of Fogal’s Hyde Park Crescent home was detailed in Mother Jones magazine two years ago; she also plays a part in this Houston Press report about the lucky owner of another Tremont Homes/Jorge Casimiro opus.
- Written Testimony Submitted by Jordan Fogal To The Subcommittee on Commercial and Administrative Law: “Mandatory Binding Arbitration Agreements: Are They Fair For Consumers?” [U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary, via Bay Area Houston]
- Home Sour Home [Mother Jones]
- Ownership Wrongs [Houston Press]
Photo: Brewster McCloud, Houston Independent Media Center