At month 39 in a new Lennar construction home at the Westshore Yacht Club, I had my 18th air conditioner malfunction. I’ve had 25 total A/C malfunctions. This home is exhausting. Truly exhausting. As you read through the site, you will realize there must be a core issue of – so many problems – in the property and quality of construction. I’m not alone. What makes my situation different is I only won’t give up and pass this to someone else.
Lennar has shown through inspection reports that both A/C systems were improperly installed. They’ve both caused extensive water damage and mold exposure. Not only does the damage make me sick, but what occurs during the inspections and repairs also seems to make me sick.
This was a video I recorded in October 2016, while I was waiting for my 18th HVAC repair.
At one point, the builder indicated I voided the warranty on both A/C systems because I used an outside contractor for a repair. I used an outside contractor for repair because I had to go through this to get to WCI Communities (now Lennar) customer care:
There was another time I couldn’t reach them because the listed number on their customer care website sent me to a limo company’s answering service.
A/C history with WCI and Lennar
Here is the history on this issue that’s gone on for several years.
Here’s the summary from all of construction issues I keep in a spreadsheet.
*Note: For simplicity, the Lennar and WCI Communities names here are used interchangeably as Lennar took over WCI in February of 2017.
2013-2014 – First issues were reported to WCI. The initial responses were from Joel Fedora who is now a Vice President of Construction with Lennar.
Late-2014 – Towards the end of the year, I retained Amanda Buffinton (at the time a shareholder at Bush Ross) to start working the legal side of the issues, because nothing was getting resolved. The first Lennar in-house legal response happens around this time.
July 2015 – The case expands and WCI moves the case from in-house to outside legal. The outside legal responses are from this time.
September 2015 – Amanda Buffington files a 558 complaint against WCI/Lennar to start the process of filing a construction lawsuit.
October 2015 – Lennar’s outside legal sends a response to the 558 complaint. Their response was completely untrue. It’s the same attorney who provided the first outside legal response in July 2015.
A/C issues description
Air Conditioning Outage – this item relates to Item No. 40 above that WCI agreed to inspect. Mr. Fannin’s air conditioning system is once again having problems. In June, Mr. Fannin noticed that the temperature almost reached 80 degrees and that the air ran all night. This is the sixth outage for the system! Mr. Fannin has a maintenance contract with Bay Area who he called out to look at the problem. Bay Area charged Mr. Fannin a service cost of $185.44 and is returning to Mr. Fannin’s home this Friday. Bay Area has isolated the issue to a bad evaporator coil, which will cost approximately $800.00 to repair. This air conditioning system is only two years old yet it has been extremely overstrained including the compressor going out at least two times. Mr. Fannin renews his demand that WCI replace his air conditioning system. Update – Since the 6-16-15 letter from Mr. Fannin’s counsel, the air system experienced a failure (up to approximately 7 outages). Mr. Fannin had to retain someone to make an emergency repair.
Lennar in-house legal response to A/C and attic ventilation issue
Per 6-30-15 letter from WCI counsel, Mr. Fannin contracted with a third party that has performed repairs on the HVAC system. Having done so, the warranty on the unit is voided. There is nothing WCI can do. If Mr. Fannin had not allowed Bay Area to service the unit, it is possible that this issue may have been covered by the Manufacturer.
Amanda Buffinton legal response to Lennar about A/C and attic ventilation issue
See Item No. 40 above where WCI agreed to inspect the issue. However, Mr. Fannin now demands that WCI replace his air conditioning system for failing over 7 times in 2 years. Further, as noted throughout Mr. Fannin’s previous letters with WCI, Mr. Fannin has had repeated problems in reporting home issues to WCI including the failure of WCI’s telephone system to correctly route Mr. Fannin to the appropriate repair person. WCI cannot delay in responding to Mr. Fannin’s emergency issues and then claim that Mr. Fannin voided his warranty. If WCI does not agree to replace the AC system, the parties are at an impasse on this issue.
Buffinton response to Lennar outside legal (prior to filing the 558)
Final WCI outside legal response to 558 complaint
The Homeowner contracted with a third party that has performed repairs on the HVAC system. Having done so, the warranty on the unit is voided. Also, this is not a construction defect.
Lennar executive’s response on 5/22/2017
Replacement of air handler and condenser. Redesign condensate drain line with a trap installed. Replace supply and return air plenums. Seal connections at the air handler. Replace 5” media filter.
After years, the builder finally admitted and agreed to make the repairs. Lennar has still not replaced the A/C systems and has refused to addressed my questions around mold remediation.