100,000 HOMES MAY BE AFFECTED- CHINESE DRYWALL -DISCLOSE IT!

By
Real Estate Broker/Owner with St.Cloud Homes

     In the aftermath of hurricanes Charlie, Francis and Jeanne and Katrina, demand for building supplies soared between 2004-2007 compounded with the one of the largest building booms seen in decades, created an overwhelming demand for building materials domestic manufacturers were unable fulfil.  As a result, drywall and other building supplies were imported from China.  

 Not just here in Florida, but in Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi,and Virginia as well.   Estimates range between 60,000-100,000 homes throughout the country with as many as 36,000 homes in Florida may have severe problems with the imported drywall.        

Links between the drywall imported from China and sulfide gases emitting from them are suspected to be causing corrosion to electrical wiring, household appliances, air conditioning components and other metals found inside homes.       

 Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) and Mary Landrieu (D-LA) have sponsored a bill S.739 called the "Dry Wall Safety Act" of 2009.  This bill would require the Consumer Product Safety Commission & the EPA to work with Federal Testing Labs to determine if the gasses pose a hazard to homeowners.  Of concern  are the organic compounds and chemicals which appear to be emitting the gas and causing a corrosive effect.       S.739 was read twice and referred to  the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation. 

It calls for a study to determine the composition of the organic materials, as well as any health or environmental impact that may be a result of exposure to these materials and proposes a  interim ban on imported drywall containing five percent organic compounds  while federal drywall safety standards can be established to protect consumers in the future.       

The Second Bill (S.RES.91) is a Recall  of Chinese manufacturered drywall based on the confirmation of the presence of sulfide gasses in homes built containing the drywall.  The sponsors of the bill (Nelson and Landrieu) hope to help affected homeowners with the cost of replacements or repairs holding the manufacturers of the drywall responsible.        

Federal Class Actions Lawsuits have already been filed against the manufacturer Knauf Plasterboard Tianjin and the company responsible for distribution in the United States. Also named in the law suit is Lennar Homes and Banner Supply company.       

 Governor Charlie Crist has requested that the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for help in developing testing for homes affected by the tainted drywall.         Rothchilt International Ltd Attorneys who filed one of the lawsuits believe that as many as 13 states may have received and used the drywall. When the Consumer Products Safety Commission finishes its investigation, this could end up being one of the largest product liability cases pertaining to home construction in history.       

 The Florida Association of Realtor (FAR) is implementing a "Chinese Drywall Addendum for Purchase" and will be modifying the Seller's Disclosures to include language specific to the disclosure of sellers knowledge of defective drywall.  These defective materials do have the potential to materially effect  the value of a property and must be disclosed by the home seller, Realtor or both to the public if they have knowledge of it. .     

 Home Buyers are encouraged to seek the services of State Licensed Home Inspectors when purchasing a home, in any event.

Posted by

St.Cloud Homes

Allison Stewart Broker, SFR, CDPE 

407-616-9904www.kissimmee-stcloudflhomes.com

                                                                                                       

    St. Cloud Homes YOUR Local Real Estate Experts serving Home Buyers/Sellers in Kissimee, St. Cloud Fl, Harmony, Lake Nona, Anthem Park, Bay Lake Ranch, Lake Lizzie, Reunion, Celebration, Lakepointe, Steven Plantation, Acadia Estates, East Lake, Windermere, Bay Hill. Our unparalleled service begins with YOU.

   For a free consultation call us 407-616-9904 or visit our website or  email us

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Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Norma Brandsberg 04/23/2009 08:24 AM
  2. Andrew Kohn 04/23/2009 06:21 PM
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Rainer
76,294
Marcus Valdez
Keller Williams Realty of Northern Colorado - Fort Collins, CO

If you think Chinese drywall is bad you should listen to Chinese Democracy.  I mean i know there will never be another appetite for destruction but that was a long wait to be let down like that.

April 23, 2009 09:41 AM #19
Rainmaker
451,192
Allison Stewart
St.Cloud Homes - Saint Cloud, FL
St. Cloud Fl Realtor, Osceola County Real Estate 407-616-9904

JOE- You're welcome!  Your comment is particularly valid given your area of expertise. What has been done to date is removal and replacement of a drywall determined to be contaminated paid for by homeowners. As you will attest to that cost can be equally mind boggling and a financial burden for a homeowner with defective materials. 

I think they aim of the bill, would be to identify it as the primary cause of the problem, and also to determine what potential health risks may be involved (as with Asbestos removal- the particles were a secondary source of cancer for example) 

Little is known about what substances organic and man made were used by the Chinese manufacturing process of this material and there is no regulation as there is here in the US pertaining to what they may or may not use. 

What we are seeing repeatedly, is that cheaply produced products exported to the US and widely distributed need additional scrutiny.  

In regard to Lennar Homes-the builder appears to have sought the cheaper alternatives to reduce costs during the building boom.  Most commonly they do not purchase from Home Depot or other Retailers when ordering mass quantities, but rather use building supply wholesalers- and foreign distributors. 

Without set standards there is no way to oversee what goes into the production.  (ie) use of lead based paint on Chinese made toys.  Perhaps the ban if enforced will allow the testing and development of protocol to handle the massive problem developing with the drywall as well as determining and isolating the associated health risks involved.  Presently, there have been some asthma related complains filed.

Similarly, there was a problem with compound siding which produced mushrooms awhile back. Remediation was removal.

April 23, 2009 09:58 AM #20
Ambassador
600,124
Roland Woodworth
Keller Williams Realty - Clarksville, TN
Short Sale and Foreclosure Resource- SFR - Clarksv

Allison: It's great to see someone working on this issue.. Hope they can do something.

April 23, 2009 03:31 PM #21
Rainer
76,788
Donna Edwards
Donna Edwards Realty - Odessa, TX

I am so glad you have brought this topic up.  It is something to look into.  I look forward to more comments on this.

April 23, 2009 03:34 PM #22
Rainmaker
558,659
Chris Olsen
Olsen Ziegler Realty - Cleveland, OH
Broker Owner Cleveland Ohio Real Estate

Hi Allison -- I've been reading about this lately.  Horrible, absolutely horrible.

April 23, 2009 03:38 PM #23
Rainmaker
1,086,431
Bryant Tutas
Bryant Tutas-Tutas Towne Realty, Inc - Poinciana, FL
Broker/REALTOR, Tutas Towne Realty, Inc

Allison. I have been readfing quite abit about this lately. I wish they could provide us with a list of builders that used Chinese drywall. At least then we would no when to look. Sounds like another disclosure addendum will boe forthcoming!

April 23, 2009 06:46 PM #24
Rainmaker
451,192
Allison Stewart
St.Cloud Homes - Saint Cloud, FL
St. Cloud Fl Realtor, Osceola County Real Estate 407-616-9904

Hi Bryant

You can ABSOLUTELY count on another addendum- FAR os working on it as we speak.

As far as where to look- try the electrical panel, coils on the A/C and anywhere copper pipes are ina a home- the copper is corroding with the sulpheroxide emissions- causing a balck residue- home inspectors will be receive notice on this as well. The emphasis will be place dupon them to confirm the presence after the testing proceedures have been established.

 

We wqelcome all input on this topic-please keep comments flow going!

April 23, 2009 08:25 PM #25
Rainmaker
435,456
Lana Robbins Realtor ® Licensed Real Estate Broker
Aloha Kai Real Estate - Clearwater, FL
Tampa Bay, Florida Real Estate

Of course drywall from China may not be the only source. There may be other countries involved as well though their GDP gives some reason for this valid alarm. I have all sellers disclose this which can materially affect the value of the property if the buyers decide to buy it to err on the side of caution. Great post!

Aloha, Lana

April 23, 2009 08:59 PM #26
Anonymous
Anonymous
Anonymous

I had a buyer all over me about this topic Tuesday, when we were out looking at cabins. Thank god most of our walls are tongue and groove, but some of the homes have some drywall, and this buyer was educating me about the "Chinese Drywall Dillema." What's next. Thanks for the indepth explanation. Now I don't have to be so clueless when buyers ask.

April 23, 2009 09:57 PM #27
Rainmaker
152,785
Richard Goates
Apex California Realty - Redding, CA
Broker 01251781

Does anytone know if any of this drywall made it to California?? This is quite a topic and very unfortunate for those that have been stricken with sickness and ill health.

Thanks

 

Rick Goates

April 24, 2009 01:03 PM #28
Rainmaker
251,610
Tina Maraj
RE/MAX North Orange County - Fullerton, CA
Fullerton, California Real Estate 714-403-7901

Very scary situation. I am in Florida now on vacation. I will notify all of my family.

April 27, 2009 04:09 PM #29
Rainmaker
198,270
Mary Strang
Viroqua, WI
Real Estate

I just closed a sale yesterday where the builder had to verify by written letter, for the buyer, that no Chinese drywall was used in the home since it was built in 2006. It was very worrisome and unexpected for the sellers to deal with this subject. I cannot blame the buyer at all work asking since it is now a top story in the media.

April 28, 2009 08:41 AM #30
Rainer
13,270
Wayne Weaver
ERA Team VP Real Estate - Bemus Point, NY

Wow, that is scary.  It's too bad more Realtor's won't have access to this information. 

April 29, 2009 04:21 PM #31
Rainmaker
645,176
Team Honeycutt
Allen Tate - Concord, NC

Wow, I hope we do not have this in NC. One more thing to worry about. I feel for those who have to deal with this. Thanks for sharing.

May 01, 2009 03:31 PM #32
Rainmaker
451,192
Allison Stewart
St.Cloud Homes - Saint Cloud, FL
St. Cloud Fl Realtor, Osceola County Real Estate 407-616-9904

SANDRA- Thank you for sharing your story - Your builder was a good one and you will have a happy ending- homes in foreclosure, have no warranty to defective materials- buyers need to be aware there can be problems afte the fact. 

May 03, 2009 05:14 AM #33
Rainer
3,290
Tonya Stuart
Coldwell Banker River Valley - Onalaska, WI

Thanks for the post.  I have a buyer right now that is bringing this topic up regularly, and I haven't had the time to do any research.  I see that Wisconsin hasn't been mentioned, which is great.  Really appreciate the info though.  Take care.

May 04, 2009 10:19 PM #34
Rainmaker
160,147
Mary Thomas Torrance,PV,So Bay, Arc, Pas, REALTOR®*
Remax Estates Properties - Torrance, CA
Mary C. Thomas Your Agent around the Globe

Thanks for the post..Our building replaced a wall for plumbing and We are dying to find out what kind of drywall they used. This is a apartment building and they would never tell us. I wonder where or how we can test our units for the drywall.

 

 

May 05, 2009 01:53 AM #35
Rainmaker
451,192
Allison Stewart
St.Cloud Homes - Saint Cloud, FL
St. Cloud Fl Realtor, Osceola County Real Estate 407-616-9904

If the work was done recently, you orobably have nothing to fear.  The imported dry wall was used primarily when building shortages occured as a result of natural disasters. Between 2004-2007.

It is quite likely that the building operator does nor know where the drywall used was manufactured.

Large retailers were not involved in the mass distribution of this product- a small job like the one you described was likely purchased from a retail distributor not a large wholesale outlet.

So don;t panic- I doubt it is worth the expense of hiring an inspector

May 05, 2009 02:01 AM #36
Rainer
1,058
Sandra Bontly,CRB,CRS,GRI
Naples, FL

As a follow-up to my previous comments, you may get further information on the Chinese Drywll problem from the America's .Homeowners Consumer Center:

 

Americas Watchdog's Homeowner Consumer Center is expanding its national investigation of imported Chinese dry wall, because of the potential health risks associated with this product. Initially the imported Chinese dry wall was thought to have been isolated to a few homes in Miami, Florida.

According to Americas Watchdog, "the potentially toxic Chinese dry wall was used all over the entire state of Florida, in Georgia, in the Carolinas and in all Gulf Coast states. We are particularly worried about New Orleans, because we lost so many houses there during and after Katrina. At the time I lived in New Orleans and I know how hard it was to get sheet rock, so we are 100% certain it's in New Orleans on a large scale." If a homeowner in Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia or the Carolinas has a house that was built or remodeled in 2005 to 2008, with a sulphur or rotten egg smell they should contact the Homeowners Consumer Center immediately at 866-714-6466 or contact them via their web site at Http://HomeownersConsumerCenter.Com.

Note to all consumers throughout the nation: "The Homeowners Consumer Center is convinced the potentially toxic Chinese dry wall is not limited to the US Southeast, or the Gulf states. If you have a home that was built or remodeled in 2005 to 2008 that has a strong sulphur smell, or a rotten egg type smell please contact the Homeowners Consumer Center at 866-714-6466."

What are the signs your house might have the potentially toxic imported Chinese dry wall?

  • First the house was built or remodeled between 2005 and 2008
  • The house has a strong or noticeable smell of sulphur or rotten eggs.
  • The home has experienced repeated air conditioning coil issues or corrosion
  • The home's occupants have experienced upper respiratory issues, nose bleeds, or other medical issues.
  • Young children or senior citizens may be the first to show signs of exposure to a home with the imported Chinese dry wall.

A note to any Florida, Georgia, Mississippi or Louisiana, TV station, talk radio station, or newspaper: Please call the Homeowners Consumer Center for more specific information at 866-714-6466.

According to the Homeowners Consumer Center, "we think we are going to end up with 25,000 to 50,000 US homes with the imported toxic Chinese dry wall. We believe long term exposure to this product could create serious health problems. If you even think you smell sulphur or rotten eggs in a house built, or remodeled between 2005 and 2008, in Florida, New Orleans, the West Coast, the East Coast, anywhere, please call us immediately at 866-714-6466 or contact us via our web site at Http://HomeownersConsumerCenter.Com."

 

Sandra L. Bontly, CRB, CRS, GRI

 

May 08, 2009 09:13 AM #37
Anonymous
Anonymous
Blank the Chinese Govt.

It is our fault as Americans that this has happened. FREE TRADE?????????

I'm so pissed off it is not even funny! I have a home with this SHIT! Our Govt. finds out Toyota has faulty cars what do they do? Fine them!

Our Govt and Chinese Drywall -----talk to them issue Ultimatums. Thats it. We have exported all of jobs, manufacturing etc. over seas. We as a nation produce NOTHING! We are a service economy. Thanks God for nuclear weapons because if we had to fight WW II again we would lose!

 

We wanted cheaper goods i.e. tv's, clothes etc. and we bought them gladly. Now Chinese Dry Wall. Lead in ours kids toys, chemicals in our food....All from China!

 Our own greedy appetites for materialistic weath got us here (myself included). I could go on and on.

 

Sorry to all! 

July 06, 2010 10:57 PM #38
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Rainmaker
451,192

Allison Stewart

St. Cloud Fl Realtor, Osceola County Real Estate 407-616-9904
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