GOSHEN – Homes in builder Roger Mumford’s new subdivision, Heritage at Goshen, start at $349,400 and go up to $429,900.
The marketing literature boasts of “unsurpassed quality" and “innovative design” for the development, located in the “quaint” Town of Goshen in the “outstanding” Goshen School District.
But 20 of the Colonials in Heritage at Goshen, the “Chester” models, were built with a defect - inadequate support girders for the second floors.
Some residents have already moved out for two weeks while crews tear out their first-floor ceilings and reinforce the support system.
There’s no danger of collapse, Mumford said.
Some buyers have delayed their closings while crews do the fix. Some are making plans to vacate so the work can be done.
As of Thursday, Mumford said, the remediation has been done at seven of the homes and there were 13 left to go.
They’ll be done at the homeowners’ convenience, he said.
Anna Adler, who moved into her four-bedroom Chester model in the subdivision in April, said she and her husband and two young children have made plans to vacate in October while their house is fixed.
The crew will have to tear out the ceiling above her kitchen and pantry and entryway to do the support-beam fix.
“I’d rather finish it now and get it over with than have something happen later,” Adler said.
Mumford, whose company, Roger Mumford Homes, is based in Red Bank, N.J., and has done two projects in Orange County, said his engineers first noticed the problem when one of the Chester-model homeowners complained of a bowed floor in his upstairs hallway.
“It isn’t a safety issue, but it’s an issue that needs to be addressed,” said Mumford.
He said the problem was caused by a mistake in the architectural plans.
He called a homeowners’ meeting in July, and told the residents that the fixes would be done at his expense. He declined to put a price tag on the work.
“No one could have foreseen this,” said Mumford, who said his firm has built about 3,500 homes.
“Once we understood the mistake, we notified all the buyers we would do whatever was needed to make it right.”
Valerie Perez, who was planning to move up from Brooklyn, was all set to close on her Chester model in the subdivision in July.
But when Mumford spotted the support-beam problem, the closing stopped dead while the remediation work was done.
Now she’s hoping to move in by the end of September. She’s staying with her mother-in-law, Lucinda Nieves, down the street, in the meantime.
“Thank God, I have a four-bedroom house, said Nieves, who has a different model, which is not affected.
Adler said it’ll be difficult, moving out for two weeks with two young children, but Mumford has promised to help with lodging and food.
She’s looking forward to moving back in after the repairs are done.
“I love my house, despite this issue,” Adler said.