View Full Version : Brass Brick Homes



okc_bel_air
01-22-2009, 01:06 PM
Anyone now the story of this home builder? Our house was built by them and we need warranty work before our one-year limit that expires next month. I have tried to contact every phone number on their site and all are disconnected. They, Brass Brick Inc. have 2 homes in our neighborhood that have sat vacant since early September. Both houses are in the middle of construction. BUT there is a house being built behind us that is being built by "Brass Brick III" and construction on it and another around the corner are going strong. When I tried to reach them, Brass Brick III, they tell me they are not the same Brass Brick that built our house. They told us they could not do anything about our warranty issues.

Here is where I am confused and have questions....

After looking up info on the assessor site and the State Secretary website it shows FOUR different Brass Brick companies, Brass Brick, Inc., Brass Brick III, Brass Brick V and Brass Brick VII.

All 4 Brass Bricks use the same website, same signs in the front yards of the homes, same logos and addresses. They are presenting themselves as the same company to consumers. But when it comes to customer service they, Brass Brick III, tell me that they are not the same and are not responsible for my home.

Anyone have info or thoughts?

Thanks

gmwise
01-22-2009, 01:13 PM
Yea my guess is its hiding formula to avoid poor workmanship.
I think its time to get a lawyer, and for gods sake don't trust the "lawyer" on here.
And if you want that name as to who to avoid, message me.

bombermwc
01-22-2009, 01:29 PM
And check with the Better Business Bureau and find out if there are any complaints. There may already be some class action stuff going on.

HSC-Sooner
01-22-2009, 02:42 PM
Brass Brick declares bankruptcy.

http://newsok.com/brass-brick-homes-files-for-bankruptcy-protection/article/3339407

Found this link too:
Reviews of Brass Brick Homes Oklahoma City, 73162 (http://www.merchantcircle.com/business/Brass.Brick.Homes.405-720-9160/review/list)

Sounds like you may not get your warranty. Better contact the right people.

okc_bel_air
01-22-2009, 03:44 PM
Update on "Brass Brick III"

Found this article...

Dolan Media Company -- Dolan Media Newswire Story (http://www.dolanmedia.com/view.cfm?recID=451618)

Steve
01-22-2009, 04:14 PM
OKC Bel Air, I urge you to call our real estate editor, Richard Mize, who has been on top of this story since it started in the fall. You can reach him at 475-3518 or at richardmize@oklahoman.com.

okcgirl09
01-22-2009, 04:15 PM
We have also had the same problem with Brass Brick. Have you had any luck since you posted this? I'm sure we aren't the only one's. They are HORRIBLE people. I know them personally and it's shocking how morally corrupt they are. We are kind of at a loss as to what to do next. I think our best option is to find other homeowners in this situation and consider a class action lawsuit.
Any thoughts?

bretthexum
01-22-2009, 04:59 PM
Wow, what a bunch of crooks. We considered building with them when we moved here in 05.

Drake
01-22-2009, 05:55 PM
We have also had the same problem with Brass Brick. Have you had any luck since you posted this? I'm sure we aren't the only one's. They are HORRIBLE people. I know them personally and it's shocking how morally corrupt they are. We are kind of at a loss as to what to do next. I think our best option is to find other homeowners in this situation and consider a class action lawsuit.
Any thoughts?

I am not attorney, nor did I sleep at a Holiday Inn last night, but I am not sure what you would get out of a class action lawsuit. They have now filed for bankruptcy protection and the list of suppliers & contractors that are owed money is going to be long. I'm not sure there will be anything there to get.

It sounds as they were as much hype & marketing as anything. They were always being featured by DOK real estate section as a top builder & great company. Unfortunately, there are a lot of people left holding bag.

Read where she blamed the banks for their problem. She needs to look in the mirror. Times are tougher, but to have your company crumble at the first sign of a slowdown shows poor management from the top.

As far as the new Brass Brick, it mights cause them more problems and exposure to get involved in the others business. Start helping some & it may never end. I am suprised they kept that name. Street cred can't be good in the future, no matter what kind of work they do.

okcgirl09
01-22-2009, 06:29 PM
you are probably right. it's frustrating. we have unfinished warranty work...major stuff, and they have been ignoring me for months. now our warranty has expired. we aren't giving up yet. i also tried contacting their vendors directly for the repairs and they are refusing to do any work.

Tex
01-22-2009, 09:15 PM
wow, this is upsetting news. I was going to build my home with Brass Brick for the longest time and I ended up going with Ideal Homes. I'm sure glad I made that move.

OKCTalker
01-23-2009, 07:29 AM
Bel Air: You've got a problem to solve and there's a new guy in the business. I'd recommend that you contact Joe Bowie who just bought one of the Brass Brick Homes divisions (totally unrelated to YOUR builder) because he is probably cherry-picking the best construction people from the other Brass Brick companies. Joe is an investment advisor with an excellent reputation there, and he appears to have been sold a bill of goods on this deal. It will be on your dime, but he can probably solve your problem, and he could use the business.

Bankruptcy by the original Brass Brick people (the bad guys) will eliminate any resolution you seek. Class action status will be hard to obtain and not necessarily productive. One shot: Seek to have their bankruptcy protection set aside (personally and by their corporation), and assert a claim on grounds of fraud, conspiracy, even RICO.

Guy Noir
01-23-2009, 03:26 PM
I think its time to get a lawyer, and for gods sake don't trust the "lawyer" on here.

Also avoid "Brass Lawyer III" too.

Rehab0808
01-24-2009, 09:52 AM
I spoke with 2 local builders yesterday that are familiar with the Cunninghams and Brass Brick homes. The word is they are moving to Colorado where Ashley's mother lives. Ashley is going to get a job and Wiley is going to stay home with the kids.

grantgeneral78
01-25-2009, 07:30 AM
I am surprised any of the homes they built are not falling apart at the seams. They used illegal alliens to build those which turned out some of the worst work I have ever seen. So I don`t feel sorry for a greedy bottom end company such as that going down the tubes. I do feel sorry for all the folks who bought there homes.

t3h_wookiee
01-25-2009, 10:55 AM
Wow, my husband and I really dodged a bullet here. We very nearly went the construction route for our first house last summer, and were going to go through Brass Brick. The model house was awesome, and we loved the planned community. Something didn't feel right though, and we didn't go through with it. So glad that we didn't!

soonerguru
01-25-2009, 02:41 PM
This sounds like a criminal enterprise. If I were you I would contact Attorney General Edmondson's office post haste. These people need to be put in jail, IMO.

Midtowner
01-25-2009, 03:23 PM
This sounds like a criminal enterprise. If I were you I would contact Attorney General Edmondson's office post haste. These people need to be put in jail, IMO.

Whoa.

Businesses routinely go under. When they do, not honoring warranties (which are debts) are part of the bankruptcy process. It's possible (but not very) to sometimes "pierce the corporate veil" and go after the owners individually, but don't expect to get very far there as like I said, whether you can even think about doing that is fact specific, not to mention probably expensive because most lawyers wouldn't take that sort of case on contingency.

So they built shoddy homes and sold them to people who probably didn't shell out a few bucks to pay a private inspector, thinking they'd be covered by a warranty should anything go bad.

Companies routinely use certain corporate structuring to avoid liability, so the use of multiple companies here isn't really a shock. In fact, the parent could even be shielded from the liabilities of its daughter companies depending on certain facts (but again, if they structured these things like this on purpose, then you can bet they're probably jumping through the right hoops there).

Sure, talk to a lawyer. Even talk to the Attorney General's office. And I agree with gmwise, even if he was trying to make a dig at me (but I'm not a lawyer, so...). The only thing I have to say about legal advice you receive on OKCTalk is that you'll always get exactly what you pay for. :tiphat:

Caveat emptor, y'all.

fire121
01-25-2009, 03:41 PM
Talked to a builder friend about this. He advised the original guy who started Brass Brick is currently in bankruptcy court. The Brass Brick III deal is a group of investors originally affiliated with the Brass Brick guy, but no longer. Supposedly, they are just trying to get a few houses built and sold in order to recover their portion of their original investment. Probably much more to the saga than just that. So it sounds like the story from the sub contractors on site there may be true?? Bad deal.

soonerguru
01-25-2009, 05:56 PM
I should have clarified. The criminal aspect would be if they were taking people's deposits, not paying contractors, etc. That would be fraudulent. Not honoring a warranty due to bankruptcy would obviously not rise to criminality, though it is lame.

metro
01-26-2009, 07:47 AM
I should have clarified. The criminal aspect would be if they were taking people's deposits, not paying contractors, etc. That would be fraudulent. Not honoring a warranty due to bankruptcy would obviously not rise to criminality, though it is lame.

Not sure how true it is, but I heard the people who are just worried by their warranties not being honored are the lucky ones. I heard some people put down deposits, etc. and now aren't getting their houses built, etc. Not sure who owns Brass Bricks companies 1-5 now. I've heard different investors own the different companies now and some of them have filed for bankruptcy. The remaining sister companies I've heard are considering changing their names as to not affiliate with "Brass Brick" name. Take that for what it's worth.

okc_bel_air
01-26-2009, 09:41 AM
Update..

Just to start, our house is not shoddy or poorly built. We had it inspected twice, one by my brother-in-law who is a home builder (he only builds customs on acreages, this is why we didn't have him build). The only problems we need fixed are not related to Brass Brick construction but to the items that are vendor supplied. Since my first post I have decided to contact each vendor and luckily they have been happy to help get the items fixed or replaced.

As for the Brass Brick III company, he has put up new signs that have a new logo and it says "NEW OWNER" at the top of each sign. I think it would probably benefit him the most to create a new name. I think the Brass Brick name will be forever tainted.

I guess I have been very lucky with our home where others have not. For those who are trying to get warranty work done, try and contact each vendor or contractor who did the work. We were supplied all that info from Brass Brick at our closing.

Midtowner
01-26-2009, 09:57 AM
Good to hear.

scootinger
01-26-2009, 09:25 PM
Hmmm, this is all a bit interesting/shocking...I went to Deer Creek so I knew a couple of the Cunninghams' children, and Brass Brick sponsored many of the school's athletic programs. I'd never known much about Brass Brick or any of the problems that people seem to be having with them. Especially since they recently adopted a few children from Ethiopia I hope this fiasco isn't too hard on their kids....

Joe Bowie
01-28-2009, 09:03 PM
Hello OKCTalk members. Iím new to blogging so bear with me. I have purposely used my full name so that you know who I am. A little history: I am the Ďsoleí reluctant owner of Brass Brick Homes lll, LLC, an entity that was formed in March of last year to build a few homes. I had been looking to buy a home for my mother and was introduced to Brass Brick via their Lone Oak community. I found a home I liked for my mother and purchased it for her. The quality of the home for the price was a good value to me. Through this purchase, it was suggested that I might enter into a joint venture in which I would provide the financial backing and they (Brass Brick) would build a few homes. We each were to own 50% of this entity. It was several months later that I received a phone call that interest payments and vendor bills were not being paid. A significant amount of capital needed to be put into the company to clean up the mess. The Cunninghams were not able to meet their share of the capital call and I therefore assumed 100% ownership of Brass Brick Homes lll, LLC . I invested another $419K of my funds and made sure that every bank payment, contractor and vendor relating to my homes have been paid.
While I am not a homebuilder, I do know how to run a business with financial integrity and transparency. With that in mind, I intend to make sure that everyone that does business with Brass Brick lll is treated the same way I wish to be treated. As I shared with others, I was also burned by a homebuilder several years ago when my family was trying to build our dream home. When the ordeal was over, we had to see our home that was under construction bulldozed down and the builder left us with a loss of over $100K. We were bitter (my wife still is) and it took time for the pain of that experience to go away. It is my belief that a homebuyer engages a builder to build them their dream home, the most expensive investment one can make. If the builder does anything to taint that experience, he causes irrepairable harm that shouldnít be tolerated. I will close down the company and take a loss on my investment before I will allow anyone to be burned by our actions.
There are questions about the different entities under the same name. My Brass Brick Entity was Brass Brick lll and they collectively marketed all of the different entities as one, even though they were different entities and least two of them have different owners. I had a advertising agreement with them. I chose to retain the name and move on, instead of running from their bad name and will attempt over time to regain the value the name once had. There are many questions about warranties on the homes and how that will workÖIím not sure either, but Iíll try to help where I can with whatever influence I might have.
Itís unfortunate that so many people have been hurt as a result of this including homeowners, vendors, contractors, title companies and even banks. Iím willing to do whatever I can to assist those homeowners struggling to get answers or things done. As I stated before, Iím just a business guy that made a personal investment that caught me by surprise and I welcome your ideas and input. I may be reached at Jbowieria@hotmail.com Joe Bowie

gmwise
02-07-2009, 02:24 PM
Wow, grandpa was right, as often he was.
The dog that gets hit, is the one who howls.

Stan Silliman
02-07-2009, 04:03 PM
Just out of curiosity, is their such a thing as a "brass brick"? I guess I mean a metallic brick made from brass. Would they, the "Brass Brick Home" people, like put a half-dozen of these very expensive bricks in a project?

grantgeneral78
02-07-2009, 04:34 PM
Just out of curiosity, is their such a thing as a "brass brick"? I guess I mean a metallic brick made from brass. Would they, the "Brass Brick Home" people, like put a half-dozen of these very expensive bricks in a project?


:congrats::LolLolLol

Tex
02-07-2009, 09:46 PM
Just out of curiosity, is their such a thing as a "brass brick"? I guess I mean a metallic brick made from brass. Would they, the "Brass Brick Home" people, like put a half-dozen of these very expensive bricks in a project?

I know in Lone Oak Run Brass Brick would actually put a brass brick on the outside of the house. It had a number on it, I guess a serial number or the home address number.

Stan Silliman
02-08-2009, 12:10 AM
So, Mr. Bowie, I have a song for you and it's no charge. However, if you want a musical arrangment or you wish me to record it, then there'd be a charge. It goes like this:

Our homes are made of... brass bricks.
Yes, I said brasssss bricks.
No clay, no mortar, no wire, no sticks
I said, they're made of... brass bricks

And our roofs are copper... top
Yes, I said ... copperrrr... top
No tile, no comp, no shake, no mop
I said, our roofs are ... copperrrr... top

Our walls are shiny and our roof is too
Reflective heat, it's throughout green
You can see it coming,
Cuz it throws a sheen

Our homes are made of brassss bricks

sgray
02-08-2009, 12:23 AM
There you have it folks...NOW we've heard it all! This forum rocks!

Too bad the posts don't scroll across the digital billboards around the city realtime. Or the ones on the highways that never get used. Then everyone could enjoy this thing to the fullest!

:omg:

grantgeneral78
02-08-2009, 06:20 AM
Wow, grandpa was right, as often he was.
The dog that gets hit, is the one who howls.


So true!!!:yourock:

Thunder1
02-08-2009, 05:01 PM
Builders. Never ceases to amaze me. Good luck with your problems.

PapaJack
02-08-2009, 08:25 PM
We live in Brass Brick home number 361, as certified by the genuine Brass Brick on the front of our home in Lone Oak Village. We took posession in November, 2006, so we can only guess at the number of homes they built before "the end."

We love our home, we never had any unresolved issues during the one year warranty period and it appears to be solid and well built. I believe most of the issues mentioned in this blog are a result of BB trying to weather the bursting of the bubble. We found the Cunninghams to be friendly, but more society conscious than our image of "home buliders."

I think their construction foreman Tom has continued with the surviving entity; he was absolutely top notch.

architect5311
02-09-2009, 08:47 PM
I spoke with 2 local builders yesterday that are familiar with the Cunninghams and Brass Brick homes. The word is they are moving to Colorado where Ashley's mother lives. Ashley is going to get a job and Wiley is going to stay home with the kids.

Sounds like the people I know. Ashley wearing the pants and making the poor business decisions.....Brass brick built my home 5+ years ago, the experience was heck, dealing with Ashley. Being an architect I personally wanted to supervise on a regular basis the construction of my home. I had taken one of their stock plans and tweaked it as well as the elevations. During construction I had to have brick taken down on three occasions because of the inferior brick work. Ashley thought the work was acceptable by industry standards.....after persistently complaining and other tactics she finally caved in on the brick issue. That was just one of several issues.........

The home building industry as a whole really sucks.....once you sign that contract, you are at their mercy.............. good luck if your building.

bluedogok
02-09-2009, 09:16 PM
The home building industry as a whole really sucks.....once you sign that contract, you are at their mercy.............. good luck if your building.
We have considered building out near Lake Travis (we are in South Austin now) and most of what I have been designing is more along the lines of the commercial style which is the bulk of the experience that I have. For the most part I have considered using a commercial builder instead of a traditional home builder. I have one that I worked with on a semi-residential style project (http://www.jtmdevelopment.com/index.php?module=pagemaster&PAGE_user_op=view_page&PAGE_id=8) and they did a good job on it, I would just rather work with someone that I had experience with.

grantgeneral78
02-10-2009, 04:41 AM
I dont think we can classify all builders as (horrible builders) because of one bad brick, sorry had to throw that pun in. It is when these big corporate builders come in and usually they have no clue of residential construction, and I agree there are some others but usually they don`t last long once the word gets out.. They are here for one reason and one reason only to get cheap substandard crews to build cheap hoses to increase there profit margins, they care nothing about there customers. Just the green backs!

mcgrawsdad
02-10-2009, 09:08 AM
A good criteria to utilize when looking for a builder is to determine how many units they build annually. Typically the fewer units ( to a certain degree) the more hands on a builder is and usually the better quality the product. Also, always ask if the builder lives in a home he built, and if so, if you may see it. If it is markably different than they homes they are building, you might want to stay away. A quality builder is gonna build every home to the same professional standard as the home they live in. Speaking from my own experience, when I build a house or do a remodel, I build it so that the quality is such that I could move in it tomorrow and live their for the rest of my life. If it is not built to that standard then I don't want my name on it...

bkbikes
02-18-2009, 11:17 PM
Somewhat I agree, In reality though there are a number of builders permitting 25 to 50 homes a year that are doing a great job. And there are some starting less than five who are clueless. I know from my years of experience and from hearing from the guests at my model home. It really depends on the level of organization, experience and intent displayed by all members of a builders team, employees and subcontractors. I also feel clients should have a third party invovled (inspector, lawyer, engineer) in the process somewhere. A good builder loves this (most of the time!!) and a poor one will have a higher level of accountability.