Chesterfield homeowner’s dream home becomes a nightmare

Taking Action

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A Chesterfield homeowner says her dream home has been nothing but a nightmare. Cracks in the drywall of a new home are common as the home settles, however, LaTonya Holloway believes what she is seeing is the result of sloppy work.

“It has been an extreme nightmare,” Holloway said. “I can honestly say I cry every day.”

Blue tape throughout the home marks the spots where Holloway’s Chesterfield home is cracking.

Walking 8News through the house, Holloway pointed out cracks along the stairs, ceiling and walls.

“It’s a visible crack where you can see it is not even sealed to the wall,” she said.

Blue tape also marks nail pops, nail heads that are bulging or protruding from the drywall.

Those cosmetic imperfections can be normal but Holloway thinks what she is dealing with is too much.

“My nail pops are extreme,” she said. “I think the guy who did the drywall said there was close to 2,000 in my house.”

Holloway moved into her Ridge Mill Court home in the Rolling Ridge neighborhood almost a year ago. Yet to date, she says she hasn’t been able to hang anything on the walls and make it feel like home.

“What’s happened is you can actually see the seams in the walls,” Holloway said.

She also showed us a section of the ceiling that is slanted. It’s not just the ceiling and walls with issues in Holloway’s home. She also has a bedroom window that doesn’t fully open.

“When I went to go lift this window it stops, it’s stuck,” she said.

Her kitchen floor is dipping and, in a bathroom, the molding is cut too short.

Holloway has complained to the builder, Boyd Homes multiple times. She feels she’s getting the runaround.

8News has also spoken to developer, Justin Boyd, multiple times over the past few weeks.

He has told us, “At no point have I ever shunned responsibilities.”

He also said, “We’ve gone above and beyond to make her happy.”

Boyd said there is an order of operations and he has sent workers back out to her home following our calls. Some of the original concerns have been fixed. Still, Holloway is still dealing with cracking, visible seams and more.

“I feel like it’s been poor workmanship,” she said.

A home inspector seems to agree with Holloway. In a report the inspector cites, “workmanship is subpar.” The home inspector did not find any major defects, the foundation and electrical are both good. As for the cracking and visual seams, the home inspector writes- “Drywall does not appear to have been primed.”

Boyd disagrees with that assessment.

In an email to 8News Boyd writes, “We would disagree with the assessment. There are differences between the finishes in plaster and smooth drywall. Ms. Holloway has expressed she would have preferred a plaster finish. However, this is not an option we offer or show. The wall finishes in this home are customary for drywall finished walls, as delivered by the vast majority of builders in this area. The workmanship is at or above the level specified in our warranty documents.”

Boyd also said the inspector is incorrect in their assessment of primer not being applied.

He wrote, “Settlement is normal in new home construction. The 11 month walk thru we offer is when we would address any settlement issues that may have occurred. Similarly, it is customary to have ‘nail pops’ and for us to do miscellaneous drywall and paint touch-ups at the 11 month point. We have met with Ms. Holloway and reviewed each of her concerns specifically. We are committed to providing product that meets or exceeds 2-10 Home Buyer Warranty standards. Without speaking with the independent builder you refer to, we can’t comment on their reaction.”

Holloway believes her warranty should cover the flaws she’s seeing.

She said, “Fix the issues and abide by the warranty coverage that I have.”

Boyd said someone will be out next week to fix the kitchen floor.

If you discover damage or defects in your home, homeowners are advised to check the warranty closely to see what is covered and what’s not. There’s usually a set timeline for work and you may have an obligation to submit a maintenance list. Experts say it may also be a good idea to send a letter to the builder and keep record of all communications.

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