Original story by: Marija B. Vader for the Colorado Springs Business Journal
The owner of a new home in the Colorado Springs subdivision, Gold Hill Mesa, filed suit this month against the builder, saying the home is not as energy-efficient as the builder purported.
Further, the builder knew the home wasn’t as energy-efficient during the sales process, said homeowners Hannah Polmer and William Robert Rudge in their lawsuit against Hi-Point Home Builders LLC, Wayne Intermill, G.J. Gardner Homes and M. Brook Swientisky.
They bought the house partly because of the touted energy efficiencies, which include photovoltaic solar panels and ground-source geothermal heat, Polmer said. “I was very excited to be part of the green movement,” said Hannah Polmer.
The 3,900-square-foot home was in the 2011 Parade of Homes. Literature for that year’s Parade of Homes, says the house is LEED-certified.
Polmer became initially concerned after she received her first utility bill, she said. “The utility bills were fantastically high. It was not what he quoted,” said Polmer. The suit said the builder touted the house’s energy efficiency, which would “limit Plaintiffs’ average energy costs to around $55 per month.”
Polmer said she and her husband are inexperienced home buyers; they moved from a home built in 1929 that they’d lived in 20 years. Polmer said she looked forward to living in a new, warm house.
The couple bought the home for $485,000, according to the county assessor. Intermill said his company spent $80,000 on systems that make the home green.
“More investigation of the house needs to be done,” Polmer said. “I think I was misled, period.”