5 On Your Side

Home Builder Bails on Franklinton Sisters

Posted April 10, 2008 5:20 p.m. EDT
Updated April 11, 2008 9:31 a.m. EDT

— Two sisters thought they would be living side-by-side in their new homes, but the builder jilted them.

“The last thing that was done was the drywall, and that was finished in October of last year,” Stacey Dailey said.

Dailey and sister, Carlise Billings, contracted with Richland Homes of North Carolina in September 2006.

“We were so excited. We were so excited,” Billings said.

Richland Homes appears to have abandoned the houses, and Billings may lose her $2,500 deposit.

Dailey worked through Richland Homes to get a construction loan with 1st Mariner Bank. Dailey said the bank allowed Richland Homes to withdraw about $200,000. The builder, however, did not pay all of the subcontractors. She said that the roughly $95,000 left is not enough to pay the subcontractors and finish the job.

On top of the money left in the draw, the amount to finish the home would be “from $50,000 to $100,000 because it’s all on the inside. There’s nothing on the inside,” Dailey said.

Dailey doesn't have the extra money needed to complete construction. If she walks away from the home, her credit will be ruined.

“I'm gonna be stuck with them sticking me. I'm gonna get stuck,” she said.

Maryland-based Richland Homes is no longer licensed to build in North Carolina. In Maryland, the company's license was also suspended and will likely be revoked.

“I want them finished yesterday,” Richard Wolf said.

Wolf developed the neighborhood. He said he is trying to work out a deal with 1st Mariner Bank to take over the homes.

“We would certainly, you know, do it for exactly the same dollar figure and with all of the features in those homes that the people had contracted with Richland to do,” Wolf said.

The sisters said they are hopeful, but not optimistic.

“I am just angry," Billings said.

“We're done. We're done. It's just, it's not gonna happen," Billings said.

Wolf said Thursday he is making progress with the bank and hopes to have the situation resolved within 30 days so the homes can be completed.

Richland Homes did not respond to WRAL's request for comment.