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Million Dollar Home Built on Wrong Lot in Ocean Hammock, NE Florida

One of the areaís most respected builders erected a million dollar home on the wrong lot in an oceanfront gated community. Started with an apparent surveying error, the domino effect took over.

By Toby Tobin
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Million dollar Ocean Hammock home built on the wrong lot - GoToby.comPalm Coast, FL – October 3, 2014 – You can’t make this stuff up. Keystone Homes, one of Palm Coast’s most reputable builders, recently completed a million dollar home in Ocean Hammock, one of the area’s most prestigious communities. The 5,306 square foot home offers views of the Atlantic Ocean. It sports five bedrooms, five and one half baths, a theater room, a game room and pool. Unfortunately, it was built on the wrong lot and nobody noticed until months after completion.

The saga
In January 2003, Andrew Massaro and his wife, of North Carolina paid $355,000 for 21 Ocean Ridge Blvd North, a vacant lot in the gated community of Ocean Hammock. Ocean Hammock is part of a larger oceanfront development often referred to as Hammock Dunes. The lot is located on the west side of the street, which parallels the Atlantic Ocean beach.

In June 2012, Mark and Brenda Voss, of Missouri, purchased the vacant lot next to and north of Massaro’s for $160,000. In early 2013, Voss contracted with Keystone Homes to design and build a large home on his lot with the intention of renting it, a use permitted under the documents of the deed restricted community.

Robbie Richmond, V.P. of Keystone Homes, and the contractor of record for the Voss home has been involved at some level with the construction of over 600 homes in Flagler County. The following events were described to me by Richmond and Voss.

  • Keystone homes ordered a lot survey (standard procedure) from a local company with a track record of performing surveys in Ocean Hammock, including several surveys for luxury homebuilder Stajo Construction. Stajo's long-standing reputation as builder of the most high-end custom homes in the Hammock ads credibility to Keystone's surveyer selection. For privacy reasons, I refer to the surveying company as “Surveyor A.”

Note: The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services regulates the State’s Surveyor and Mapper program through a Board of Professional Surveyors and Mappers (PSAM). State regulations prohibit the release of company or individual names until a complaint has been filed and the complaint has been ruled to be judicially sufficient.  At this point, no complaints have been filed against either of the surveyors in this incident.

  • Surveyor A subsequent to completing the survey, pinned the corners (marked the location of the outside corners of the building) to determine the exact location of the home relative to the lot boundary.
  • The Ocean Hammock Homeowners Association’s Architectural Review Board reviewed and approved the building plans.
  • Flagler County reviewed the plans and issued a building permit to Skyhawk Development Inc (DBA Keystone) May 1, 2013.
  • A foundation survey was ordered by Keystone and performed by Surveyor A.

Throughout construction, Flagler County and utility companies were involved with the construction at several levels and in several ways.

  • The site plan, building plans and foundation survey were reviewed by the county before the building permit was issued. A permit will not be issued until parcel ownership is confirmed.
  • On-site inspections occurred often; rough plumbing, monolithic slab, lintel, exterior strap or clip, roof sheathing, poured cell, window installation, framing, plumbing, H.V.A.C., drywall, insulation, exterior wall sheathing, exterior lath, early power, water and septic and final inspection. In some cases, deficiencies were noted, corrected and re-inspected.
  • Dunes Utilities hooked up the water supply and installed a meter.
  • FP&L connected power and installed a meter.  
  • A final “as built” survey was needed before the home could be approved for occupancy. Surveyor A’s schedule was full so Keystone ordered a final survey from Surveyor B. The final survey was presented to Keystone.
  • Final inspection and approval were issued by the county March 28, 2014.
  • Based on the final survey performed by Surveyor B, Voss’s lender issued a Title Insurance policy for 23 Ocean Ridge Blvd.

During the construction period, Voss visited the site several times to observe progress. Naturally, several neighbors, as neighbors are wont to do, stopped by to observe or inspect progress. Nobody noticed that anything was amiss.

The number 23 is displayed on the front of the house and on the mailbox in front of the house.

Vacation Rental Pros was engaged by Voss to manage the home’s rental. Click here to see VRP’s webpage describing the home along with dozens of pictures. Notice that two renters have posted glowing reviews, one as early as May.

Fast forward to September 2014; the surveyor of a nearby lot discovered the Voss survey which was  reported to May Management, the HOA property manager. May Management notified Keystone on or about September 24th.

All the paperwork appears to be in order indicating the house was constructed on Voss’s lot at 23 Ocean Ridge Blvd. N. Permits, three surveys, the deed, the legal description and the title policy confirm it. Yet the house is on Massaro’s lot.

Apparently, the first survey stakes were incorrectly placed on the Masssaro lot. Based on the false premise that the stakes designated the Voss lot at number 23, construction proceeded. The error remained unnoticed until September, months after the home was first occupied. The following arial is dated 1-15-2014.

Ocean Hammock Ocean Ridge home on wrong lot

How did it happen?
How could everyone miss this monumental error for 18 months? Were there any red flags? If so, how were they missed?

One contributing factor was likely the stark isolation of that stretch of Ocean Ridge Blvd. Number 23 was the 10th of 11 consecutive vacant lots on the west side of Ocean Ridge Blvd. The lots are cleared of trees with no identifiable landmarks left to provide visual clues. There are no reference points at the street. The 12th lot is irregularly shaped with wide frontage. Thr photo below is dated 1-19-2012.

Ocean Hammock Voss lot 1019-2112 - GoToby.com

Parcel maps on the Flagler Property Appraiser website clearly show that the northwest corner of the Voss lot has a diagonal line, cutting off the 90 degree corner, making its configuration unique among the other Ocean Ridge lots. Number 21 does not have this diagonal. Yet the signed and sealed surveys from both surveyors show the diagonal. Had they not, it would have been a red flag to anyone viewing the survey.

The first survey apparently set the blunder in motion. The construction process is a series of consecutive steps performed by people from several licensed and regulated trades and professions. Each step relies on the competence of those performing previous steps. Each major step must pass an inspection before the next step can commence.

It’s not reasonable to assume that the validity of the first survey be confirmed before proceeding with each subsequent step of construction. The county approved (but did not verify) the survey. The validity was confirmed by the signed and sealed survey itself, a public record containing the surveyor’s name, stamp or seal and license number. Further, the foundation survey confirms the initial survey.

There was one point where a red flag should have been raised. While performing the final survey, Surveyor B should have picked up the error. Unfortunately that did not happen. It seems that Surveyor B, presumably in the interest of saving time and/or money, used Surveyor A’s foundation survey as a starting point, compromising the results of the final survey.

After learning of the error in September, Keystone immediately notified Voss and Massaro. Keystone has also met with Surveyor A. The status of Surveyor A’s Errors and Omissions insurance policy is in question. If, as seems to be the case, its Errors and Omissions insurance had lapsed, Surveyor A would have been required to disclose that fact on the survey. The survey carries no such disclosure.

Finding a solution
A million dollar house on the wrong lot in a private luxury community is a lawyer’s dream-come-true; like lifetime dancing lessons. Simply put, Voss built a luxury home on Massaro’s lot without Massaro’s permission. But you can’t pick up the three-story block home and pool and move it to the Voss lot next door. That bell cannot be un-rung. A litigated solution would be costly and time consuming. At the least, it would include Voss, Massaro, Keystone, both surveyors, the HOA, the county, the lender and the title insurance company.

Resolving blame and determining compensation could be straightforward, as simple as Voss and Massaro deciding to trade lots – problem solved. On the other end of the spectrum, Massaro could dig in his heals telling Voss, “Thank you for the nice furnished house. Please do not trespass.” There are many possible solutions between the two extremes. To date, the parties have indicated a desire to work out a reasonable solution. In the end, it will depend on what each party’s definition of reasonable is.

reader comments
I live here
Posted by Bruno
Aug 27, 2017, 11:20 am
Surveyor error. Second surveyor error.


In a reasonable world with reasonable people, the true owner of the property would either agree to swap lots, with an additional reasonable premium paid for his trouble, or simply sell his "lot" to the "home" owner at current market price, plus a reasonable premium for his trouble.

I live here in the neighborhood and walk or bike past it nearly every day. We even considered buying the home as it's on the market now at fairly low price. I knew something was up that was diminishing its value to buyers. There is nothing exceptional about one lot vs the other, they are nearly identical in character. The only advantage to the lot the home is built on is that the lot north of it is not as deep and might require the home footprint be smaller, giving their pool area a little more privacy.

Virtually ALL homes on this stretch are 3-4 stories tall, so you're going to be overlooked on any lot. If I owned the lot the home was built on I'd say "trade lots with me and give me $50K for my trouble" and be done with it. But then I'm not an A hole. This owner has sat on this lot for 14 years and it has not appreciated. It's not some in-demand lot. There are plenty of empty lots on this street, after about 25 years. He would be smart to just sell the guy the lot for market price.
Not necessarily a cut and dry outcome.
Posted by Old Surveyor
May 29, 2016, 9:31 pm
A lot of things may have gone wrong. At one point, the subdivision map was created. Based on this, legal descriptions of each plot were prepared for the Title Company. It's possible there was a mix up at this step, before the land was sold and "Surveyor A" ever got started.

The surveyor is setting corners based off the legal description so if it didn't match the subdivision plat (this happens), then the title company would bear some of the blame.

Also if the original corners were physically set in error then the previous Surveyor would be at fault. There could also be errors in the marks delineating the roads and intersections, and these are usually used to figure out where a parcel sets.

Also, Adverse Possession could be in play here... if the true owner allows someone to occupy his land long enough he can lose the land.
to many faults to blame
Posted by Lynn Jo.
Aug 06, 2015, 3:56 pm
I am in a similar situation, the land I settled with my home turns out to be the wrong lot, after I have been there for 15 years, paid taxes, got all the proper documents. My home is no longer my home and may be taken away from me. We cant up and leave without losing our home and starting over. But we aren't not the only ones to blame, I attempted several times to ask questions about my location and was ignored. This wasn't something to planned it was accidental we have invested a lot of money in this place. Not so easy to start over or place the blame on others and say what to do when your in that situation.
first world ''problems'' :
Posted by DJ MichaelAngelo
Dec 04, 2014, 1:04 pm
don't go chasing waterfalls, just stick to the rivers and the lakes that you're used to....
No error just greed
Posted by Carmel
Nov 14, 2014, 7:53 am
The owner of property number 21 should not trade nor sell to the Voss because he knew that was not his property. It was not an oversight on his part because he is a professional on RE transactions. He tried to steal the next door lot because he must have seen the difference in size during construction. No deals.
Sooo who's fault was it????
Posted by Mike Lucas PSM Orlando Florida
Nov 13, 2014, 10:48 am
Being a Florida licensed land surveyor since 1972, I'm not sure if it was the surveyors fault... Are ALL the facts in??? What lot did the deed call for??? It could be a typo on anyone's part, scriveners error, OCR (Optical Character Recognition) program making 3 to become 5's and 5's become 8's, etc. BEFORE the surveyor got the official documents.. The title company could have also screwed up.. Just too many things to speculate on, but let this be a wakeup call to us land surveyors that you always, ALWAYS rough chain up and down the block (or to known control points as noted on the plats)to assure things like this ONLY happened to others...
This will probably be hashed out by many real estate professionals in every seminar for years to come... It's blunders from OTHERS of this sort that we all learn from...

Mike LLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL
One plot is better than the other
Posted by John
Oct 23, 2014, 10:43 am
One thing I notice is that the lot the house was built on is much better than the one it was supposed to be built on. The lot is was originaly supposed to be built on is right next to a multiple story building, and who wants a multiple story building overlooking your house ? So I wouldn't settle for a plot exchange.
If the Vosses visited the construction at all, they must have known that the house wasn't being built on their lot. Who doesn't know what land they own ? You would have to wonder why they didn't point it out if that was the case.
The only solutions I would accept is for the land on my plot to be restored to it's original state (you broke it, now fix it), or if I like the house that was built I might buy it instead of seeing it removed, but for a fraction of it's price of course.
There is no reason for the plot owner to suffer any ill consequence for the wrongdoings of others.
I should be a lawyer
Posted by A. Nilssen
Oct 18, 2014, 11:56 pm
Well first off if the Massaro's bought the lot in 2003, did they take a look at the lot when buying? And if so then they shouldn't really own the lot with the house on it. For 11 years they have been paying taxes on the wrong lot. I don't know about Florida but in NC if you pay someone else's taxes for 5 years you own the property. So they would own the lot they thought was theirs and the people that put the house up would not own the lot because they haven't paid taxes on it for 5 years. But if the law could take it one step further and say that since the Massaro's haven't paid the taxes on their true lot in 11 years, so they don't own the lot anyway. Really confusing, but I could see someone using this scenario. There is also a law in NC that if you use someone else land for so long and no one says anything they you can continue to use it Called "adverse possession."
So even though they didn't have anything on the land they were paying taxes on a plot that had their address on it. I hope they figure it out!
Unbelievable!
Posted by Yolanta
Oct 18, 2014, 7:46 pm
The surveyor is at fault. Plus Mr. Voss is at fault. He visited the property during construction and couldn't remember the parcel he had purchased. The builder was relying on the surveyor and Mr. Voss. The Massaro's are owed restitution. They have several options and control the outcome of this situation. They can swap the land and have the Voss's pay for the parcel plus appreciation. Have the house torn down and have the parcel returned to its original state. Sue the Voss's and the surveyor. I worked for title companies and with surveyor companies and I'm truly surprised that the surveyor didn't have the map of the development that shows all the lots in that community. That's what I used to do with the surveyor when we needed a survey done. Look at the map books that listed the development. I guess that process would be too time consuming?! However, that would
save the mess they have now in front of them. Mistake? Definitely not. Thoughtlessness, yes!!! This is a money making blunder for the attorneys involved.
Bar Exam Question
Posted by Jamie Cuticchia
Oct 18, 2014, 6:21 am
A fact pattern like this would make an excellent question for a bar exam!
Confidence In Keystone
Posted by Pam Roman
Oct 17, 2014, 1:49 pm
I have nothing but the highest respect & confidence in the people at Keystone Homes.
They built our home & are the most accurate & detailed builder we have ever had & I say that with certainty after having built 3 new homes over the years!
This whole situation is a mess but not something that cannot be settled if the owner of the home built & his neighbor will sit down with the people at Keystone. Without a doubt in my mind Keystone will do everything they can in this circumstance.
They build the most beautiful homes & have a record of excellence & a reputation of First Class Construction!
1cb9
previous owner Hammock Dunes
Posted by janice marino
Oct 17, 2014, 8:37 am
LIFE CAN BE HARD. IT IS HARDER WHEN YOU ARE STUPID (just a quote from John Wayne). Seems to apply here. Just tear the unappealing house down. I would not "just trade lots". Why would they want to build a home/live next door? Someone please answer that for me? Yes, we all make mistakes, and...

Surveyor's Fault
Posted by Bruce
Oct 16, 2014, 10:26 am
The first surveyor is the one at fault. Everyone else involved expects the professional next to him to be doing his job.

I am a land surveyor. For many years I had a very small shop and had no E&O insurance as I know it is a target for settlement, even if you have done nothing wrong. Now I am in a bigger firm where we have a good E&O policy. I do feel better about having it, but we still practice from a standpoint that we never want to have to pay out. So we do our due diligence. We would rather lose money and get it right than be found at fault for something. E&O insurance is like catastrophic healthcare insurance. You can make your deductible very large to afford $500,000 worth of coverage.

Lots of comments in here have mentioned Google, mailbox numbers, and aerials, etc. This issue could have been avoided by dragging a $70 cloth tape down the road from a cross street or cul-de-sac, as a "dumb" check.

As to the comment about buying an existing home built on the wrong lot, I would say you were too cheap to pay for a survey or you would have known before closing. That old phrase, "Buyer beware" is no more important than when you are buying your home.
Both lots will be underwater in future
Posted by Heywood
Oct 15, 2014, 4:35 pm
Both lots will be underwater in the future as sea levels rise.
Swap and be done with it.
Figured it out
Posted by Roger
Oct 15, 2014, 2:13 pm
I am the owner of the lot to the left of this property. I watched this home being built and my lot resides at 19 Ocean Ridge. When I was down in Sept to discuss my building of a NON RENTAL home, I noticed the mailbox was up with the address of 23 Ocean Hammock. It took me all but 2 minutes to figure out that either they had the wrong address of they built on the wrong lot. My agent then called Flagler County the next morning and the rest is history!
Subdivision plat?
Posted by Connie
Oct 15, 2014, 2:13 pm
I would assume that there was a plat of the entire subdivision that is on file with the county clerk's office (or office of deed's & records). That plat should have been the basis for any plat of an individual lot. It appears to me that the surveyor failed to traverse the boundary before platting the property. You can never assume that any property pin located in the field is correct without first making sure it falls where it should based on the data available from the original survey/plat.....expensive lesson for someone! A lesson that is taught very early in surveying.
Thanks, but no thanks
Posted by Veronique
Oct 14, 2014, 10:33 pm
The Massaro family has already invested over 1/2 million on their lot, an exchange of lots would be foolish to say the least. I'd say they have a strong case for ongoing trespassing on the property, by countless of trade people and now by renters. In addition, its unlikely that the rental house matches their idea of their dream home.

Voss and all the 'professionals' he hired will simply have to pay for the mess they alone created. The Massaro family has done absolutely nothing wrong
Title, Lender and Owner missed the street address
Posted by Andres Chany
Oct 14, 2014, 9:53 pm
Buyer Massaro paid for lot at '21 Ocean Ridge Blvd North'.
All the parties approved paperwork on wrong property as story says .. "Vossís lender issued a Title Insurance policy for 23 Ocean Ridge Blvd North". How come NO ONE noticed wrong street address? Interesting to see how litigation works out, how it is resolved?
Lot Owner, not my mistake!
Posted by Jim Jones
Oct 14, 2014, 3:29 pm
The LOT owner should not swap, should not settle and should keep the house. This is everyone else fault, expect HIS/HERs. FOOOOK being nice, they had over a year to discover their error, so the LOT owner should get the house.

The builder should buckle up and build the the correct house on the correct LOT. I would file an injunction against anyone going into the house!
IGNOMINIOUS SURVEYORS!!
Posted by Channeling Bill O'
Oct 14, 2014, 3:29 pm
Ignominious Surveyors! Criminy! This is no blunder; itís pure negligence. Negligence brought on by complacency warrants no pity from me. These guys did no due diligence. Even if they did any at all, they didnít check their work and the field crew couldnít prove that what they did was right when they got back to the office. So letís blame the platting surveyor for not going back out and setting his PRMís and PCPís after the street was constructed as was mentioned in the article. Still not their fault, either. No excuses.

The worst of this story is that the surveyor will be blamed for the whole thing and nobody else will accept any responsibility for their role. Yes I agree, the owner and the contractor should share in the blame. And the surveyor probably doesnít know how to defend himself. According to one of the comments, they allowed their insurance to lapse. So, they deserve what they get. Not pity. The actions and more aptly stated, the inactions of these surveyors reflect poorly on themselves, their respective companies and the surveying profession as a whole. Shameful!!
Surveyor Error
Posted by Henry Rogers
Oct 12, 2014, 5:22 pm
Many years ago, I arranged a group to buy 360 acres in the north side of Jacksonville. Two powerful attorneys I knew owned an adjacent 360 acre parcel. As a broker, I asked the attorney in Jacksonville I if I could list his and sell a 720 acre tract. When we spread our two surveys out on his floor, we could see there was what turned out to be a 63 acre overlap. Neither surveyor could prove their corners.

In the 1850s, a farmer platted a subdivision of hundred odd acre lots intending to pass them down to descendants. When the Yankees invaded Jacksonville, the monuments were disturbed. Creeks that were boundaries flooded and moved. The Great Fire burned the original plat so no official record was available. Recognizing that both sides had the ability to continue a lawsuit to the State Supreme Court, which would have taken five years and cost more that the land was worth, we drew a line down the middle and each lost 31.5 acres. Turtle Creek Subdivision is now on much of it.
Dilemma
Posted by Dick
Oct 10, 2014, 3:29 pm
The Massaro family should be paid what they paid for their lot plus what holding cost incurred since they purchased it. Having $355,000 tied up for 11 years plus taxes, insurance, and opportunity cost of money is not cheap! If I was them there is no way I would want to just trade lots. If you Google earth this you will see the Voss house is pulled forward to the minimum setbacks allowed from the street. Building next door would require you to build at least as far forward towards the street as the Voss house is built, otherwise it is going to look funny looking out the front of your house and seeing the other house stick out. Pulling forward like this may make sense for a rental if you are controlling cost but not if you want to live there all the time. Additionally it is kind of ugly compared to the other houses on the street, not sure I would want to be next door! I canít understand why anyone would want to rent a house in a subdivision for a vacation. There are so many other wonderful places to go visitÖÖ I already live in a subdivision, why would I want to go vacation in one????
Reply to Pamela
Posted by Toby
Oct 09, 2014, 9:26 pm
In none of the cases I found did the lot owner get a free house. The concept of unjust enrichment prevailed. The typical settlement is some form of lot swap with some cash compensation included. The debate will likely be over the amount of cash settlement.
What is Attached to Real Property Is Owned By Owne
Posted by Pamela Alderman
Oct 09, 2014, 5:20 pm
It looks like the person who owns the lot owns the house now! I would not trade lots.....Infact I might sue the other lot owner for trying to steal my lot and building an ugly house on my lot that I did not authorize.
Mr. Voss and investment properties
Posted by Theresa L.
Oct 09, 2014, 3:02 pm
I'd like to note that Mr. Voss owns about 15 investment properties in this community, so it's no surprise this error went unnoticed. Mr. Voss was/is busy suing the community association, retrofitting houses to create more bedrooms, and cramming dozens of renters into homes, built in a single-family community, on a weekly basis.

I hope Mr. Voss isn't continuing to rent "Windows on the Sea" - the name given this house by VacationRentalPros.com - when the house is not on his property.

A Builders Nightmare
Posted by David
Oct 08, 2014, 11:55 am
I hope for the sake of all participating parties that the Lot owners come to a conclusion and resolve this issue amongts eash other. If thats not the case then the bottom line is that both the Surveyors and Keystone builders should be held resopnsible and correct the matter as it should be. I will remind myself not to ever recommend a surveyor and or builder with no attention to details. it should have never gone un-notice for this long period of time.
Precious Wetlands
Posted by Vincent Fortenberry
Oct 06, 2014, 7:58 pm
Has anyone considered the precious wetlands this housing development has spilled into? Brilliant wildlife species like the tricolor heron and the great egret have already been disturbed enough by the overabundance of golf courses in the area.

Regarding this abhorrent mistake on the part of apparently amateur surveyors -- shouldn't the local government be at fault? I fully respect and sometimes admire the work of our local county office employees. But in this case, how does the city not come in and make a double-check on the work of these surveyors???

Pleasantly ruffled,

Vincent
You get what you pay for ...
Posted by Gerard R.
Oct 06, 2014, 4:03 pm
With regard to Land Surveyors and other professionals, you are probably going to get what you pay for. Here is the proof.
Wrong Lot
Posted by Ron Maggio
Oct 06, 2014, 12:37 pm
My family has built many homes in Florida over our 20 year history and a small mistake early can lead to disasterous consequences.

In my humble opinion, the surveyor's critical human error (yes, everyone makes mistakes) is the root cause of this financial disaster. The builder under Florida Laws ultimately takes responsibility on the entire project, and should ulitimately pay the price if the surveyor cannot. Those are the rules of the game. Does the surveyor have any business making this kind of mistake, probably not..this is the minimum core competancy of the job.

Unforunately the opportunistic nature of lawyers and other people who stand to gain from the error will likely rule the outcome. The owners of the lots involved do have a good way to make the situation right, but only by their own character and value of fairness.

The world may call the windfall lot owner a a fool if he gives in and accepts a trade, what a shame in situations such as this the golden rule is an after thought.

No excuse!
Posted by Mary
Oct 06, 2014, 11:56 am
Sorry, this should not have been hard to figure out for any of the parties involved! There is an existing home across the street from the lot/s in question (see photo). I noticed something appeared to be wrong in summer 2013 when I was plotting the street's rental homes on a map of the neighborhood using county records and visiting the site. If you started with the existing home across the street as a reference point, you would see that the Voss home is on the wrong lot. No excuses.
Beautiful Home
Posted by Bob Noel
Oct 06, 2014, 11:55 am
The people at Keystone Homes are the best. They take great pride in dealing with you openly and honestly. I'm sure they will do everything possible to rectify this situation amicably.
Over priced
Posted by Morgan Monaco
Oct 06, 2014, 8:07 am
A toothpick box but good money for the coffer city tax. Proof of typical american shit work. From surveyor to inspection etc.... Just passing the buck.
Wrong Lot
Posted by Ralph
Oct 05, 2014, 3:40 pm
There are many amenable solutions to this situation, and I wanted to make note on one of the comments.

In my former life as a Corporate Credit Manager for a company selling wholesale construction supplies, I have had occasion to effect many lawsuits against questionable "professionals," from general contractors to subcontractors of all types.

Attempting to gain funds from Surveyor A (while a sensible idea) will probably be a 95% waste of time. Anyone careless enough to let his E&O lapse will not have anything worth going after anyway - that's why hiring the cheapest (in this case Surveyor) is quite often problematic.
Why Is the Builder and Mr. Voss Seeming to Blame E
Posted by Roger
Oct 05, 2014, 11:29 am
Sounds like the builder and Mr. Voss are blaming everyone but themselves - even suggesting the county and utilities are at fault. The builder erected his sign on the lot - thus proclaiming the location of the house to be built. Mr. Voss surely visited the construction site often and should have known it was on the wrong lot. Why would the county or utility company be expected to verify that the house was being constructed on the wrong site. The house is now being rented by Mr. Voss - lots of vacationers enjoying themselves - who is liable if one of them drowns in the pool (as happened two months ago here in Hammock Beach). Would Mr. Voss's insurance policy really cover the lot owners from liability if there is an accident. Would the insurance decline to pay since Mr. Voss does not even own the house.
Taxes
Posted by Reason
Oct 05, 2014, 11:28 am
The BIG issue will be taxes.

When you add a home to an empty lot, your taxes will go up. The Massaro family should hold firm since now their taxes will go up.
This is an expense that they may have not planned for.
Who knows if the Massaro family wanted this type of build or type of home.

I feel for the Voss family but the court of laws and the suits after this disgrace should change quite a few practices in Flagler County, at least when it comes to home building.

Good luck builder, surveyor A&B, City, FPL, all included.

I hope their insurance is paid in full and lawyers are on stand by.



Curious
Posted by Sandra Fish
Oct 05, 2014, 10:09 am
Where was the owner of the home being built during this whole process? I believe they are at fault as well.
Seems like the Massaro's now have a million dollar home built on their lot (like winning the lottery!). They should accept that and exchange deeds. The Voss's can then begin to build a new home but with funds from all the professionals involved.
wrong lot
Posted by Mark
Oct 04, 2014, 10:23 pm
tell the builder and the Voss's thanks for the house and then tell the Voss's to have the builder build you a home on the correct lot. The builder, surveyor, inspectors, and county are responsible for the errors do it should not cost the Voss's a dime for their house to be built.
Same thing happened to us in Palm Coast
Posted by Robin Sampson
Oct 04, 2014, 10:27 am
My husband had the same thing happen to us in Palm Coast. However, the lot owner in our situation hasn't been so understanding. Even though we bought the house in 2004 as an existing home from a builder (who is now out of business) the land owner sued to have us ejected from our home. This nightmare has been going on for 4 YEARS now. People should remember to be decent to each other. Hope this works out for everyone involved.
Wrong lot
Posted by Bill Ullrich
Oct 04, 2014, 10:26 am
Trading lots makes since. However, Mr.Voss should pay the difference between lot purchase price. $195,000. Who is responsible for the $195,000? Surveyor A. Not only did he screw up, he let his error & ommisions policy lapse. Want to see the outcome of this.
Wrong Lot
Posted by Joe Onorati
Oct 03, 2014, 9:28 pm
Owner diligence is the best protection from the real estate community experts,period.
wrong lot
Posted by Charles Gardner
Oct 03, 2014, 4:56 pm
if an appraisal was made on this property it stands to reason that the appraiser may share part of the blame.

 
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Don "Toby" Tobin is a licensed real estate professional affiliated with Grand Living Realty. Toby is a member of the Flagler County Association of Realtors®, the Florida Association of Realtors, Enterprise Flagler, Flagler Home Builders Association, and the National Association of Realtors.

GoToby.com proivdes real estate news, commentary, and analysis for Palm Coast and Flagler Country Florida, as well as Realtor® referrals and consultation to buyers, sellers, and developers.