The Issue with Chinese Drywall
Chinese drywall was imported to the US during the peak building years of 2004 and 2007. Over 100,000 homes, in 20 states, were built with this product. The drywall contains a sulfurous product, that gives off the odor of a burning match. Over time, it turns copper pipes black, rots wiring, and plumbing, and destroys the air conditioning condenser.
The Issue with Living with Chinese Drywall
More importantly, this product is harmful to people living within those walls. Many have reported that the odor is causing headaches, and respiratory problems. Numerous people have move out of their new homes, only to have to pay for another home or apartment to live in.
The Issue with the Mortgage Lenders and Chinese Drywall
These displaced folks cannot afford rent on an apartment, and the mortgage on their new home. And, pleas for aid from the mortgage lender are being declined. The cost of replacing all the drywall in the home can reach $80,000 to $100,000. Is this the beginning of more mortgage lender problems? How many people will just walk away from their homes, leaving the industry in another downfall?
The Issue with the Courts and Chinese Drywall
As of right now, there are court cases pending to for home owners hoping to resolve this problem. Many of the new home builders are taking it upon themselves to replace the defective drywall. But many are not, and the courts will start trying those cases in January of 2010.
The Issue with Our Economy and Chinese Drywall
This issue has the potential of causing another run of foreclosures and bankruptcies. The state of Louisiana has begun using their $5 million in federal housing money to assist homeowners with replacing the offensive drywall. Senator Bill Nelson (Dem-FL) is introducing a bill to provide the same type of assistance for Florida residents.
Where will this go? How will we deal with this large problem on top of our small recovery of the last year? Are you seeing the effects of Chinese drywall in your market?
Marianne Snygg, GRI, ABR, ASP
ERA Herman Group Real Estate
Colorado Springs and Monument Real Estate