Report: #134076

Complaint Review: Turnberry Homes - Firethorne Custom Homes

  • Submitted: Mon, March 07, 2005
  • Updated: Tue, August 16, 2011
  • Reported By: Franklin Tennessee
  • Turnberry Homes - Firethorne Custom Homes
    210 Jamestown Park Drive
    Brentwood, Tennessee

Firethorne Custom Homes - Turnberry Homes construction is rated a "D or F", Deceptive Business Practices, Allegedly Committed Fraud and Breach of Contract, Ripoff! Brentwood Tennessee

*Consumer Comment: turnberry homes-sonoma

*Consumer Comment: Did they ever fix anything?

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

This is a brief summary of the overwhelming number of challenges we are experiencing with Turnberry Homes.

We contracted with Turnberry Homes in February 2003 to build us a Custom, Quality home. We decided to have Turnberry Homes build our new home for us after many hours of investigating them and other builders. Our experience with Turnberry Homes was a fairly normal one until a few days before we closed escrow.

We trusted Turnberry Homes to build our new home in the Richards Glen development in Franklin, Tennessee. This neighborhood is in a great location of the Cool Springs area and our home is on a hill with a beautiful view. It is a pity that Turnberry Homes did not build our home with the same pride as God did in making the view.

Before the walk-through we noted and mentioned to the Turnberry representative that there were 3 obvious issues that needed immediate attention. Turnberry corrected one concern, masked over the second concern and completely ignored the third concern.

During the walkthrough, many deficiencies were noted and the items that Turnberry were not able to immediately correct, they addressed in writing that included a completion date for the corrections. With this information in hand we decided to go ahead and follow through with the scheduled escrow closing.

Once escrow closed on the 28th of August 2003 and we took position of the house, the attitude of Turnberry Homes and it's representatives took a 180-degree turn. Our experience with Turnberry Homes since closing escrow has given us new understanding of the meaning of Take the Money and RUN.

It wasn't long after we moved into our home that I realized that it was necessary for me to dust off the investigation skills I had acquired many years prior and put these skills to use in my attempt to get our home repaired by Turnberry Homes. In my second letter to Rick Bell of Turnberry Homes dated November 2003

I included the following paragraph:
I have been extremely patient thus far with you and your representatives. My patience is quickly expiring because of the delays and lack of concern regarding these matters. Therefore, you have left me with no alternative but to insist that you take personal responsibility for the open repair issues. I expect to hear from you regarding scheduling the proper repairs and installation within 72 hours of your receiving this letter. If I do not receive any communication from you in the stated 72 hours, then you are leaving me with no other alternative but to turn these matters over to our Attorney. I have clearly conveyed my concerns in this letter and I hope it motivates you to resolve these matters. If I am not taken seriously, then my turning this over to my Attorney is the next course of action you have given me. Do not take this as a threat, but as an Annoyed, Frustrated Paying Customer that has been forced by your company to take drastic measures.

The response we had from Rick Bell was that he does NOT get directly involved with customers and their homes but will be sending his Senior Builder to address our concerns. The representatives he sent were the same people that had the responsibility of directly managing the building of our home in the first place. These are the same people that did not construct our home correctly the first time.

As you can see from the brief History I have included on this site, we have patiently attempted to resolve the many defects and deficiencies in our home with Turnberry Homes. We have provided Turnberry Homes with more than reasonable time and every opportunity to address these items. Everyone, including builders, construction, real estate and laymen that are familiar with our home and the many defects and deficiencies in our home are all aghast that Turnberry Homes continues to take the stance that there is nothing wrong with our home. Turnberry Homes started to completely ignore our requests and phone calls when they were informed that a member of our household was diagnosed and fighting cancer in February 2004. The only correspondence we have had with Turnberry Homes since then have been through our Attorney.

The following are just a few of the many repairs that our 16-month-old house needs:

1.Roof Water damage under the felt; shingles improperly installed; areas without any felt under the shingles; nails and nail holes in shingles; improperly installed flashing; rain gutters improperly installed and leaking; splitting eaves from the house settling and causing the shingles to split and leak water. Architects and Engineers state that roof needs to be completely removed to the frame and replaced with new materials.

2.Attic Because of the mold and mildew on the roof, there is now mold, mildew and fungi in the attic area.

3.Brick Veneer The brick veneer walls were installed with NO flashing for windows or flashing for the weep holes; Codes calls for a gap of 3/4" to 1" between the felt covered OSB boards and brick veneer wall, we have 1/4" to NO gap; Codes call for all the OSB board behind the brick veneer to be covered with felt or tyvek, there are areas of the OSB board behind the brick that have NO felt or tyvek covering; there are areas of the OSB board that are not covered and are wet and have mold and mildew; the manufacturer of the OSB calls for the OSB boards to have a 1/8 gap between boards to allow for expansion, the OSB boards are butted up against each other. Architect and Engineers recommend that all the brick, OSB and insulation be completely removed, the outside foundation be repaired and then sealed with a petroleum based moisture barrier, re-insulate the walls, install new OSB boards, reset windows with proper flashing, install flashing for weep holes, install new felt or tyvek wrap and install new brick veneer all to meet or exceed code requirements.

4.Windows The windows are not properly installed and have NO flashing; several windows leak when the rain hits them; water leaks through the windows and runs down the back of the drywall; many of the window frames and sills have peeling paint from the water and moisture; daylight can be seen through the frames of several windows.

5.Back Door The back door leaks water and has mold and mildew growing in the frame from not being properly installed.

6.Foundation There are 7 areas in the foundation where the mortar has washed away into the crawlspace from the hydrostatic water pressure coming from the outside; the hydrostatic water pressure has also caused several of the cement blocks in the foundation to loosen and are being forced into the crawlspace area; the foundation walls (up to 10' high) leak water and hold moisture every time it rains; water leaks through the foundation into the crawlspace from under the garage floor; there are wood foundation supports that are in standing water in the crawlspace; there is wood installed below grade in the foundation under the crawlspace access door; there are foundation vents that the builder bricked over; several of the foundation vents have been mortared closed or open permanently.

7.Crawlspace There are several areas where water accumulates up to 12 deep in the crawlspace after a rain; there are several areas where the standing water will take weeks to evaporate; there are steel support pillars in the crawlspace that have severe rust and are deteriorating from being in standing water; there are 2 foundation drains, 1 functioning and 1 non-functional, and water pools each time it rains; there is mold, mildew and fungi on the wood in the crawlspace; water leaks excessively into the crawlspace through the HVAC system foundation inlet; there are several holes left in the crawlspace that water accumulates in each time it rains.

8.Hardwood Floors The hardwood floors are not properly installed and are sub-standard quality. The hardwood is separating, splitting, warping and have many Mill Ends.
A home inspector stated the hardwood used was Cabin Grade.

9.Steam Shower The steam shower control unit has never been permanently installed, it was left hanging from the wall by its wires.

These are but a few of the many challenges we are experiencing with our less than 1 year old home.

In the investigatory report provided by Mr. Harrison McCampbell, the Architect we hired to inspect our home stated in his report that he would rate this house a D or even an F. Mr. McCampbell, Architect, also states that in his professional opinion our house was Built to sell, not to last and our home in its present state is Virtually a Stack of disparate building materials and components, few of which work in concert with others.

We paid in the neighborhood of $500,000.00 for a house that needs extensive, expensive repairs after only one year. The estimated cost of repairs now is well into the 6 figure $ range. What will the repair/maintenance cost be for 5 or 10 years? More than we paid for the house in the first place? I am sad to say, probably so.

We have had 2 professional home inspections; inspections performed by a well-noted and respected Architect; inspections performed by a well-noted and respected Structural Engineer; and inspection performed by a well-noted and respected Civil Engineer specializing in water flow. The reports from all the above-mentioned professional's have the common opinion that our home is in need of many serious repairs that are the responsibility of Turnberry Homes to perform.

Turnberry Homes make the reference in their brochures that they pride themselves as being the Ralph Lauren of homebuilders but, in my humble consumer opinion based on our experience with Turnberry Homes, they are far from living up to the implied reputation.

The President of Turnberry Homes, Rick Bell, states on the Turnberry Homes website that Building a family's dream home is a rewarding experience and I'm proud to be a part of that, Quality construction and customer satisfaction are the joint priorities and Customers should settle for nothing less. I know I wouldn't. The Reward we have received with our Turnberry Home has been serious defects and deficiencies that have cost us 10's of thousands of dollars in inspections and fees, the construction quality of our Turnberry Home has rated a D or even F, the customer satisfaction has been deplorable at best, so I ask Mr. Bell why he expects us to settle for this defective, deficient home when, according to his statement on the website, he states that he wouldn't.

After presenting the list of defects and deficiencies to Rick Bell of Turnberry Homes several times, Mr. Bell has apparently chosen the Low Road and has tried to publicly discredit us in a newspaper interview calling us impossible to please. Mr. Bell has not honored his warranty nor has he stood behind his product and its quality. Mr. Bell states publicly that he stands behind his products and workmanship, but when it is time to put your money where your mouth is Mr. Bell has in our case consistently chosen to NOT follow his advertised promises.

You can decide for yourself from the pictures and information we have provided here.

We understand that we are NOT the only Turnberry Homes owners experiencing these types of challenges with our homes and the builder. Our neighbor is currently preparing the information to post on this website regarding their Turnberry Home. We know of 2 other homes in our development that have had major roof repairs done on their less than 2 year old Turnberry Homes. We welcome any Turnberry Homes Customer/Owner to write us regarding their homes and experiences.

Turnberry Homes is now building and selling homes in one of its developments under an Assumed Name, Firethorn Custom Homes. Firethorn is registered to the same exact I. D. number as Turnberry Homes. There is currently NO record of Firethorn Custom Homes having a valid Tennessee Contractors License.

At this point I have to say that I would not personally trust Turnberry Homes to build a Dog House for me, never mind any other type of house.

Turnberry Homes is currently building homes in 9 developments in the Middle Tennessee area ranging in price from the $300,000's to $995,900. Turnberry Homes is also building homes in 6 developments in the greater Charlotte, North Carolina area ranging in price from the $220,000 to $500,000.

The following are the various agencies that we have filed formal complaints with:

State of Tennessee Board for Licensing Contractors

Better Business Bureau of Middle Tennessee

Federal Trade Commission

Suit in Williamson County Chancery Court

H.A.D.D. Homeowners Against Deficient Dwellings

H.O.B.B. Homeowners for Better Building

Our Lemons History:

February 2003
We contracted with Turnberry Homes, LLC to build us a Custom home to meet our specific needs.

March 2003
Turnberry Homes started construction of our home in March/April 2003.

August 28, 2003
We closed escrow and took position of our Custom Built Turnberry Home and the NIGHTMARE began.

We agreed to close escrow with the written agreement from Turnberry and Watson Flooring that they would perform the agreed upon and necessary repairs to the steam shower by the week of September 8, 2003.

September 2003
I noticed excessive water in the crawlspace and notified the builder. The builder sent their superintendent and he stated that it was common to have water in the crawl space and it was not the builder's responsibility to remedy the problem. I called the Franklin City Codes department and requested their assistance in getting this situation resolved.

I contacted a Hydraulic Engineer and had him inspect the house. The Engineer stated that he recommended that the builder seal the foundation with a petroleum-based waterproofing and install a French Drain around the outside of the foundation to assist diverting the water runoff. I also hired a professional Home Inspector to perform a complete home inspection and provide a written report on his findings.

I wrote a letter to Mr. Rick Bell of Turnberry Homes and provided him with a copy of the Hydraulic Engineer's report and a list of deficiencies from the home inspection. I invited Mr. Bell to personally review our home, as he states he does in his advertisements.

The Franklin City Codes department, a builders Engineer and the builders Superintendent inspected the water leaks, wet crawlspace and bricked over foundation drain. The superintendent informed me that Mr. Bell does not meet with customers. I provided a copy of the Hydraulic Engineer's recommendations to the builders Engineer.

October 2003
I received a letter from Rick Bell of Turnberry Homes and he stated that his Engineer did not agree with our Hydraulic Engineer's recommendations for sealing the foundation, as it was not required by codes. Mr. Bell and his Engineer stated that they were having 2 downspouts diverted to drain away from the foundation and this would solve the water problem. The downspouts were diverted and this action did NOT solve the water problem.

I realized that I was dealing with an unreasonable builder and therefore need to hire an efficient, professional Attorney with expertise in this type of law for assistance in resolving these matters.

We hired an Attorney that specializes in this type of case. At our Attorney's direction we have had an Architect perform an inspection and provide a written report. We have had a Structural Engineer perform 2 inspections and provide written reports.

Watson Carpet and Floor Covering arrived to perform repairs to the steam shower. The methods of repair that the tile setter wanted to perform were NOT the agreed to methods. I did NOT let the tile setter in to start the work and requested that he have his supervisor contact me so this matter could be corrected.

I received a letter from Mr. Larry Taylor of Turnberry Homes along with a copy of a letter Turnberry Homes received from Watson Carpet and Floor Covering stating that I should let the Watson experts perform the repairs.

November 2003
The Architect started his initial inspection of our home.
The Structural Engineer performed his first inspection of our home.

I wrote and sent Mr. Bell another letter listing some of the defects in our home and requesting that he take personal responsibility to see that these challenges are corrected.

I received a call from Mr. Bell and he stated he does not get involved in reviewing customers homes but will be sending his superintendent to review the Punch List and address any concerns we have.

December 2003
Rick Bell, president of Turnberry Homes, sent Larry Taylor (Senior Builder) and Paul Freas (Builder) to meet with us regarding our homes needed repairs and our concerns regarding the needed repairs. It was at this meeting I introduced our Attorney as she was in attendance. We provided the Turnberry representatives with a list of needed repairs. Larry and Paul stated they were aware of our concerns and would be addressing the needed repairs for the interior first and then they will address the issues on the exterior.

Turnberry started the necessary repairs on the steam shower.

Received a report from the Structural Engineer.

Had several meetings with Mr. Taylor of Turnberry Homes to discuss the progress of the Steam Shower repairs and various other interior Punch List items.

January 2004
The Structural Engineer did another inspection and provided an updated report.

Met with Mr. Taylor of Turnberry Homes several times to track the progress of the Steam Shower repairs and various other interior Punch List items.

February 2004
Met with Mr. Taylor of Turnberry Homes several times to track the progress of the Steam Shower repairs and various other interior Punch List items.

We had another Professional Home Inspection performed as several serious concerns had arisen.

March 2004
Received a copy of the Home Inspection Report.
The tile and plumbing repairs for the Steam Shower were completed, leaving the sealing, glass, and steamer control installation to be completed.
Left several messages for Mr. Taylor of Turnberry Homes.

April 2004
Received a copy of the Architect's report.
The glass installation was completed for the steam shower.
Left several messages for Mr. Taylor of Turnberry Homes.

May 2004
Left several messages for Mr. Taylor of Turnberry Homes.

June 2004
Attorney sent letter and copies of all reports to Mr. Rick Bell of Turnberry Homes with 2 options for Turnberry to choose from to resolve these challenges.
1.Repair all defects to the standards and approval of our Engineers and Architect.
2.Buy back the house at current market value.

July 2004
The Attorney representing Turnberry Homes contacted us through our Attorney and made arrangements for the Turnberry Engineers to inspect the house on August 31, 2004.

August 2004
I contacted the Franklin City Codes Department and they sent an inspector out to inspect our home. The inspector stated that we definitely have challenges with our house and that the builder has a responsibility to correct them. The inspector recommended that we file a formal complaint with the Tennessee State Contractors Licensing Board and gave us the builders Contractors License number to file the complaint against.
August 31, 2004 Turnberry Homes Engineers inspected our home.

September 2004
We, and our Attorney, NEVER received any response from Turnberry or their Attorney concerning their inspection of our home.
We filed a formal complaint with the Tennessee State Contractor Licensing Board (CLB). We gave the State copies of all the inspection reports we had concerning our home.
We received a letter from the State CLB on the 14th stating they were providing a copy of our complaint to Turnberry Homes and they had 15 days to respond.

October 2004
We received a copy of the Turnberry Engineer response from the State CLB on the 12th. The Turnberry Engineer report says that our home is constructed well beyond what is considered good and workmanlike and the industry standard.
We filed a formal complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.
A State Inspector/Investigator performed a preliminary inspection of our home. I provided the inspector with a copy of our Architect and Engineer reports. The inspector stated what the State's procedures were in a case such as this and what we could expect to happen next.

November 2004
We received a letter from the Tennessee State CLB Attorney stating that he has requested an investigation of our case and an Investigator would be contacting us in the next few weeks.

December 2004
We provided the State CLB with a rebuttal to the Builders Engineers report, pictures of the areas in question taken in September through December 7, and a video of the water intrusion into the crawlspace taken December 7, 2004.
We provided the builders Attorney with a copy of the video and pictures.

Our Attorney, acting on our behalf, filed suit against Turnberry Homes LLC for:
2.Breach of Contract
3.Consumer Protection Claims
4.Negligent Misrepresentation

January 2005 -
We filed a formal complaint with the Better Business Bureau.
We filed a complaint with Homeowners for Better Building (HOBB).

We filed a complaint with Homeowners Against Deficient Dwellings (HADD).

We provided pictures, video, all documentation and interview with local television reporter Dagny Stuart of WSMV. Ms Stuart did a story regarding the challenges new homeowners are experiencing with the builders and the complaints the homeowners filed with the Tennessee State Contractors Licensing Board.

Franklin, Tennessee
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 03/07/2005 04:44 PM and is a permanent record located here: The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Consumer Comment

turnberry homes-sonoma

AUTHOR: gab - (United States of America)

I have been a Turnberry Homes owner for almost three years now and I must say that Rick Bell and his team have stood by their work from day one. Without getting into specifics the couple of issues we have had has been resolved in a timely, and I mean timely, matter. We have recommended this builder to several people we know and two couples actually have moved into our community, one had their home built and another purchased an existing one. Both are pleased.

Thank you,
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#2 Consumer Comment

Did they ever fix anything?

AUTHOR: Sandy - (U.S.A.)

We are interested in an update on your situation. Did they ever fix anything? There are many others in our community that are having problems too.
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