Homeowners sue lumber company over defective wood flooring

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Apr. 14, 2011, 9:15am

GALVESTON � Claiming they purchased defective pieces of wood flooring for their home, Brent and Stephanie Vesut have filed suit against John Cox Lumber Co.

A lawsuit filed March 29 in Galveston County Court at Law No. 2 argues that batches of lumber installed at the Vesut residence were shrinking.

The plaintiffs contracted with the defendant through Terry Davis of Adore Hardwood Floors Inc. Davis received and accepted a quote totaling $7,531.22 for 2,905 square feet of Circa 4-inch Select Red Oak Planks and other materials for installation.

"Davis accepted the defendant's quote based primarily on representations made by the defendant of honesty, integrity and expert personal service and due to a longstanding business relationship that had developed between the defendant and Davis," the original petition says.

After the Vesuts tendered a check to the defendant, the wood began to arrive at the plaintiffs' home in two separate batches.

The first batch arrived in late October and was allowed to acclimate before installation.

According to the suit, it initially had only minor shrinking problems that Davis assumed could be remedied without the need to be completely replaced.

Shortly afterwards, the second batch arrived, was acclimated and put into place. It immediately began to shrink much more so than the first batch, the suit says.

The defendant was notified and summoned to the property to take moisture samples.
"(Those) samples showed that moisture was not the cause of the shrinking problem," the suit says.

It further explains that both batches of wood continued to shrink causing pervasive cracks and bowing throughout the entire home.

"Both batches of wood shrank beyond the point of repair and now require total replacement," the suit says.

"On information and belief, at least five other properties used the same wood from the defendant that was used in the plaintiffs' home. This wood used on other projects had very similar problems and this was known by the defendant at the time the wood was purchased by Davis on the plaintiffs' behalf."

Consequently, the Vesuts sue for deceptive trade practices, common law fraud, breach of contract and mental anguish.

They also request a jury trial.

Attorney Bret D. Stanley of Galveston is representing the plaintiffs, and Galveston County Court at Law No. 2 Judge Barbara Roberts is presiding over the case.

Cause No. 64,984

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