The Real Deal Miami

Record-setting Golden Beach home has history of mold

The home’s past problems were not disclosed during the $22.5M deal
317 Ocean Boulevard (inset: Diane Lieberman)

317 Ocean Boulevard (inset: Diane Lieberman)

A custom-built oceanfront home in Golden Beach recently set a record as the most expensive property ever sold in the town when buyers paid $22.5 million for the 15,592-square-foot mansion. However, unbeknownst to the buyers, the home was until recently afflicted with mold, according to the Daily Business Review.

California entrepreneur Ronald Tutor purchased the home at 317 Ocean Boulevard late last month for $1,443 per square foot. For that substantial sum, Tutor received six bedrooms, a 38,850-square-foot lot, seven bathrooms, a gym, swimming pool and guesthouse.

The sellers were Joel and Marcia Hochberg, who bought the lot for $2.4 million in June 1998. The couple then built what they thought would be their dream home.

But court documents show that at the time the Hochbergs were dissatisfied with their contractor, claiming that the house was shoddily built and uninhabitable.

The Hochbergs claimed they were “unable to spend even one night because an overwhelming smell of mold in the home triggered a severe reaction in Mrs. Hochberg.”

The Hochbergs also alleged that their new home had cracked walls, drafty doors, leaky windows, poorly cut marble and peeling stucco.

However, in the recent sale the extent of the home’s repair history was not discussed, said the buyer’s broker, Diane Lieberman of Miami Beach-based South Beach International Realty.

In Florida, sellers and their agents must disclose facts and conditions about real estate that could affect its value or desirability, according to the newspaper. [Daily Business Review]Christopher Cameron

  • al czverik

    I wish journalists would have to report material facts (this means you Christopher!).
    Who was, if any, the listing broker?

    • LarryAt27N

      According to the DBR story,

      “For his part, the seller’s broker, the Hochbergs’ son, said the home’s history was not a concern during the sale.

      “The house was fully repaired, and they moved into the house after all
      that,” said Scott Hochberg of Keller Williams Realty in Fort Lauderdale.”

      • al czverik

        Thanks Larry.
        That’s a big part of the story. At the risk of jumping to conclusions, it appears that the son must have been aware of the lawsuits filed by his parents.
        Despite the listing broker’s quote, the history of a home is always a concern. There is a very specific form, “The Seller’s Disclosure Form” that requires the seller to acknowledge any adverse history. Slim chance that Lieberman proceeded without that form signed by the owner.
        Sadly, that suggests the son was a party to concealing prior or known defects; without question, one of the 5 biggest offenses for a Realtor.
        If this is true, he’ll lose his license, his Keller Williams franchise, and significant legal fees.
        The lawyers are going to make a killing either way… Let’s hope that there was some misunderstanding and they can work it out.

        • 1Ronald

          Thanks, Al for your input which is the continuation of the story. I’m sure we haven’t heard the last of this.