Consumer Warning: KB Homes Buys 900 Lots In North East Florida
To date (Oct 26, 2013) thekbhome.com has identified 30 KB Home communities in the State of Florida with problematic homes. KB Home themselves have admitted to identifying at least 1,140 homes in Central and Southwest Florida that need more than minor repairs from water damage caused by defective framing, stucco, roofing, and sealant installations.
Now the giant homebuilder states that it has acquired 900 plots for homes in Northeast Florida in what the Jacksonville Business Journals labels a land shopping spree, which is a 70% percent increase over 2012. The article says the following:
Most recently, KB (NYSE: KBH) paid close to $3 million for 74 developed lots in Mandarin’s Whitmore Oaks, off of Old St. Augustine Road, which will feature homes between 2,000 and 3,550 square feet, starting in the the mid $200,000s.
Most of KB’s purchases have been smaller sites in existing neighborhoods:
— 48 lots in the Residences at Wynnfield Lakes at the intersection of Atlantic and Kernan boulevards
— 38 lots in Anniston Pines, not far from the intersection of Atlantic and Southside boulevards
KB’s core business is the first-time home buyer, Holder said, but the infill land buys, surrounded by older neighborhoods and able to command a higher price, give the builder a chance to target a different segment of the market, the move-up buyer.
But there are larger deals farther out in the suburbs, like the 98-lot Angora Bay off of County Road 220 in Clay County, near Middleburg, which it plans to open in 2014, and Glenn St. Johns, which is off of County Road 210 in St. Johns County and will have close to 300 homes.
“That has a three- to four-year runway of closings for us,” Holder said. “While we have the smaller purchases that fill a one- to two-year runway, this gives us a chance to plant the KB flag and build our brand in St. Johns County.”
Holder said his goal is to grow KB’s Jacksonville business in terms of delivered homes by about 30 percent each year. In 2012, KB delivered about 300 homes in the Jacksonville area.
And while 900 lots seems like a lot to take on at once and such a large jump from 2012’s acquisition activity, Holder said the company is keeping a close eye on its land inventory.
“We’re very cognizant of that position and how it impacts our balance sheet,” he said.
thekbhome.com – closing statement
With all that has happened in Florida to date, one can’t help but wonder what the future holds for both new and existing residents of St. Johns County. Will the residents of St. Johns County trust KB Home to build in their neighborhood? Will the KB Homes brought into those existing neighborhoods cause the values of surrounding homes to plummet? Will KB Home continue down its path of what some might consider wreckless homebuilding, or produce a better quality product? Is the building department of St. Johns County aware of the happenings elsewhere in Florida? One thing is for sure, lets hope that the new homes are built better than the ones being repaired today. No homeowner wants to live like this: