House Flipping Nightmares

It seems everybody is making big bucks flipping houses these days, but buyers beware because sometimes it can be a nightmare as Lisa Guerrero and the I-Squad found out.

You've seen it on TV.  It’s called “House Flipping.”  Buy a rundown house, fix it up, and then sell it for a big profit!  But for some people who bought houses from flippers, things have gone terribly wrong.

Just ask homeowner Maria Stapleton. She told INSIDE EDITION’s I-Squad, “I could not believe that there could possibly be one more thing that could happen to this house!” 

Maria is a young widow who moved to Nashville to start a new life.  She bought a flipped house that had just been remodeled top to bottom. But once she moved in, she says everything started going wrong.

“About two and a half weeks after I moved in, my brand new garage door came smashing down,” she said.

A few weeks after that, Stapleton says she woke up to a nightmare.  Cracks began spreading across her kitchen ceiling.  She grabbed her camera and what happened next was beyond belief.

“You could hear the nails pulling. And in one fell swoop it came down,” she said.

Stapleton says her entire kitchen ceiling caved in on her, leaving debris and insulation all over the room.  To make matters worse, she says the flipper who sold her the house stopped returning her phone calls.  He told INSIDE EDITION that the house was repaired properly. 

Just a few miles away, Natasha and Justin Buttrey had settled into their new dream house with their three young daughters.  Their house had been flipped by another house flipper.  But just three months after they moved in, the finished basement flooded.  When they ripped out the soggy sheetrock they discovered a disaster.  The foundation was cracked and buckling.  They say it was years of neglect that had been covered up by the house flipper. 

Natasha told the I-Squad, “All we do is deal with this house. We're stuck. We have nowhere to go.”

Contractor Kristin Beall Young inspected the Buttrey's house for INSIDE EDITION and she was shocked by what she found. 

She showed how the foundation of the house was literally crumbling and dangerously bowing. Then she inspected the deck that the Buttrey's say actually sways in the wind.

“I can't believe they screwed those bolts in the brick,” she said, pointing out that the deck was being supported with bolts screwed into the crumbling foundation.

She says the deck was so dangerously slapped together. No one should go on it.

So, the I-Squad called Paul Kazanofski, the man who flipped the Buttrey's house.  He says he's flipped hundreds of houses and insisted their house was repaired properly.  So first, we showed him the deck.

INSIDE EDITION’s Lisa Guerrero asked, “Did your company build this deck?”

He replied, “Yes we did.” He then admitted that there was no excuse for the lack of proper support.

Then we took him down in the basement.

He said, “I don't want them to think I don't care about them!”

He became livid, insisting that the crumbling foundation had been repaired.

But when we showed him the children's bedroom, now abandoned, with dangerous mold growing on the walls and floor, his attitude completely changed.

Kazanofski then agreed that the Buttrey’s are right. He promised to buy the house back and help them find a new house. Then he apologized and hugged Natasha Buttrey who sobbed in his arms.