Denver Post: Lakewood passes measure, takes on Colorado’s construction-defects law

Denver Post: Lakewood passes measure, takes on Colorado’s construction-defects law

LAKEWOOD — A crowd of more than 100 gathered Monday evening in front of Lakewood City Hall to denounce a proposed measure designed to soften the effects of Colorado’s controversial construction-defects law.

But nearly six hours later in an early-morning vote Tuesday, the Lakewood City Council passed the ordinance 7-4 with some slight changes — making the city the first community in Colorado to take on the law.

The 2005 law, which many builders say has made it exceptionally easy for homeowners to sue over property defects, has been cited by critics for the dramatic shrinking of the new condominium market locally.

Lakewood’s measure, which drew nearly two hours of public comment, gives developers and builders a “right to repair” defects before facing litigation and would require condominium association boards to get consent from a majority of homeowners — rather than just the majority of the board — before filing suit.

But a gathering of homeowners, many from Lakewood, waved signs before the City Council meeting saying the ordinance is “anti-homeowner and anti-consumer.” They say it would jettison consumer protections that allow homeowners to hold builders accountable for shoddy construction.

“It protects builders and big business at the expense of homeowners,” Chad Otto, former president of the Grant Ranch homeowners association, told the crowd. “Does Lakewood want to be known as the mecca of poorly built condos?”

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Jenny Davies-Schley

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