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Grading Deposit not returned by the Builder

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Deal Addict
Dec 26, 2005
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Mississauga, ON
gajego wrote:
Mar 13th, 2009 6:06 pm
In my case the city of Richmond Hill has fully assumed the subdivision, so I should be getting my money back. :mad:
Have you checked with the Town of Richmond Hill to determine if they have returned the lot grading funds to the developer/builder yet?
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Nov 13, 2005
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gajego wrote:
Mar 12th, 2009 5:52 pm
Hello There,

We moved into a new subdivision, and the builder, part of the initial contract of sale-purchase, added $1,000 grading deposit. It's been over 4 years since we moved, and the builder still refuses to return our money, depite the numerous letters and phonecalls that I've made to their office. They are saying that the City has not fully taken responsibility over the subdivision.

We called the City and the Engineering Department told us over the phone that the Subdivision is fully assumed. I even got a copt of the by-law, that I've faxed to the builder.
The builder still refuses to return our money. We got back to the City again, and they said that they are not responsible (which I understand) and they suggested that and I should sue the builder in small court in order to get my money back....

Anyone experienced this? An advise would be appreciated.
wow thanks for the reminder notice!!!! time to collect my $700 from Greenpark!!!!

sk
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Mar 25, 2003
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Markham
gajego wrote:
Mar 12th, 2009 5:52 pm
Hello There,

We moved into a new subdivision, and the builder, part of the initial contract of sale-purchase, added $1,000 grading deposit. It's been over 4 years since we moved, and the builder still refuses to return our money, depite the numerous letters and phonecalls that I've made to their office. They are saying that the City has not fully taken responsibility over the subdivision.

We called the City and the Engineering Department told us over the phone that the Subdivision is fully assumed. I even got a copt of the by-law, that I've faxed to the builder.
The builder still refuses to return our money. We got back to the City again, and they said that they are not responsible (which I understand) and they suggested that and I should sue the builder in small court in order to get my money back....

Anyone experienced this? An advise would be appreciated.
I hear the other day on fairchild radio, it took the guy 3 years to get grading deposit back. He said yes you will get a run around, call here call there
but eventually will get it back. So just have to keep calling

I haven't get my grading deposit of $500 yet too, :(
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May 10, 2005
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Ottawa
Whitedart wrote:
Mar 13th, 2009 4:02 pm
In Mississauga, new homes are required to maintain the approved lot grading for a period of 5 years after the City assumes the subdivision. This is included as part of the development agreement and on each property title.............
The OP may have a long wait.
5 years after the city assumes is when the development is finished and all houses have been built? That could be 7 or more years if you are one of the first?
gajego wrote:
Mar 13th, 2009 6:06 pm
.The "grading deposit" is in essence colateral money kept as a guarantee by the builder that the people who bought a home from them, are not going to alter the grading: putting a pool, or other constructions that will alter the subdivision plan, as the builder is still responsible for until the city assumes the subdivision. This deposit is fully refundable after the Municipality had assumed the subdivision. This is how it was explained to me by the layer.
In my case the city of Richmond Hill has fully assumed the subdivision, so I should be getting my money back.
You can't add a pool or deck for 5 years (as some other posters have said) after you move in because it changes the grade?
Is that in your purchase contract?
Whitedart wrote:
Mar 13th, 2009 7:43 pm
Have you checked with the Town of Richmond Hill to determine if they have returned the lot grading funds to the developer/builder yet?
So, the builder is not the one with the money, it is the City?

I guess I am still confused. My Son did not have this "deposit" in the house he bought so it must be a regional thing. I still ask you folks, if it is a refundable deposit, is it stated in that way in your Contract? Otherwise, in my mind, all deposits become part of the total cost of the purchase in any contracts or deals I have ever dealt with.
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Dec 26, 2005
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Mississauga, ON
Pete_Coach wrote:
Mar 14th, 2009 8:41 am
5 years after the city assumes is when the development is finished and all houses have been built? That could be 7 or more years if you are one of the first?


Yes, it could be 7-8 years that no lot grading changes are permitted. But this typically relates to the engineered drainage swales along the side and rear lot lines. Many homeowners want to remove these swales, and level out the small yard they have. That throws drainage patterns off, and someone else ends up with the ground water run off and a flooded yard.
You can't add a pool or deck for 5 years (as some other posters have said) after you move in because it changes the grade?
A deck should not significantly affect the lot grading, but inground pools do, so addition lot grading deposits are required with pools. At present, this refundable City deposit is $5000, and any grading changes have to be pre approved before the pool is installed.
Is that in your purchase contract?
I don't know if the builders are including this or not.
So, the builder is not the one with the money, it is the City?
The developer has to submit this deposit when a plan of subdivision is approved on a per lot basis, usually in the form of a letter of credit. Given that, the developer is possibly collecting the funds back from each builder within the subdivision, who is then collecting a deposit from each home buyer.

I guess I am still confused. My Son did not have this "deposit" in the house he bought so it must be a regional thing. I still ask you folks, if it is a refundable deposit, is it stated in that way in your Contract? Otherwise, in my mind, all deposits become part of the total cost of the purchase in any contracts or deals I have ever dealt with.
Yes, it will probably vary somewhat from each municipality based on the history of problems they have had with lot grading. With the postage stamp sized lots in many areas of Mississauga over the past 40 years as it has built out, lot grading changes have been an ongoing issue.

But if it is a collectible deposit, it should be refundable, and also included in the purchase agreement.
[OP]
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Sep 14, 2008
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Whitedart wrote:
Mar 13th, 2009 7:43 pm
Have you checked with the Town of Richmond Hill to determine if they have returned the lot grading funds to the developer/builder yet?
I've tried to obtain this information, as it is a key piece of evidence in case of a small-court case. Several people that I've spoke with at Town of Richmond Hill avoided to give me an answer, simply because they did not know, and/or not had access to this information.

One way to obtain it is to subpoenaed, as part of a litigation lawsuit; however it is not financially practical because it would cost a lot to get into that, and $1,000 may not worth it...

This is exactly why a builder with such questionable reputation is playing all this game, KNOWING VERY WELL that my options are limited :mad:
Deal Addict
Dec 26, 2005
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Mississauga, ON
gajego wrote:
Mar 18th, 2009 4:24 pm
I've tried to obtain this information, as it is a key piece of evidence in case of a small-court case. Several people that I've spoke with at Town of Richmond Hill avoided to give me an answer, simply because they did not know, and/or not had access to this information.

One way to obtain it is to subpoenaed, as part of a litigation lawsuit; however it is not financially practical because it would cost a lot to get into that, and $1,000 may not worth it...

This is exactly why a builder with such questionable reputation is playing all this game, KNOWING VERY WELL that my options are limited :mad:
Do an FOI request, of the development agreement with the developer & the town, and any documents that relate to this with the builder (if the builder is not the developer) in terms of municipal grading deposits.

Richmond Hill will have an FOI officer that will explain the procedure and costs, provide the forms, etc.

They have to release the information, although they will charge on a per page basis. The development is not that old, so the items should not yet be placed into storage (which is usually 2 years and held up to 7 years).
Member
Nov 15, 2006
302 posts
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Toronto
Dan McTeague may be able to help.
[OP]
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Sep 14, 2008
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wrecker wrote:
Mar 18th, 2009 10:36 pm
Dan McTeague may be able to help.
Thank You very much for the information.
Deal Addict
Dec 26, 2005
2796 posts
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Mississauga, ON
wrecker wrote:
Mar 18th, 2009 10:36 pm
Dan McTeague may be able to help.
How? He is an MP for Pickering/Scarborough East, which does not include Richmond Hill.

If the OP wants to get a politician involved, he should contact his local Richmond Hill councillor, or Mayor.
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Jul 14, 2008
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Ontario
gajego wrote:
Mar 12th, 2009 5:52 pm
Hello There,

We moved into a new subdivision, and the builder, part of the initial contract of sale-purchase, added $1,000 grading deposit. It's been over 4 years since we moved, and the builder still refuses to return our money, depite the numerous letters and phonecalls that I've made to their office. They are saying that the City has not fully taken responsibility over the subdivision.

We called the City and the Engineering Department told us over the phone that the Subdivision is fully assumed. I even got a copt of the by-law, that I've faxed to the builder.
The builder still refuses to return our money. We got back to the City again, and they said that they are not responsible (which I understand) and they suggested that and I should sue the builder in small court in order to get my money back....

Anyone experienced this? An advise would be appreciated.
I bought a new house in Vaughan in July 08 and no grading charge was applied. Where was this charge indicated? In your closing costs? Or on the purchase agreement?

If so, it should reveal something in that agreement (it is pretty large) that states whether or not this amount charged to you will eventually be refunded or not.

Even better, you should contact the lawyer you used and ask them. You paid for services rendered and they SHOULD help...
Deal Guru
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Mar 25, 2003
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Markham
onlineharvest wrote:
Mar 21st, 2009 11:20 pm
I bought a new house in Vaughan in July 08 and no grading charge was applied. Where was this charge indicated? In your closing costs? Or on the purchase agreement?

If so, it should reveal something in that agreement (it is pretty large) that states whether or not this amount charged to you will eventually be refunded or not.

Even better, you should contact the lawyer you used and ask them. You paid for services rendered and they SHOULD help...
Deposit was asked during Closing
did you had your closing yet?
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Keigotw wrote:
Mar 22nd, 2009 12:23 am
Deposit was asked during Closing
did you had your closing yet?
Yes, I meant to say I moved in July 08.
I grabbed my closing package and I don't see that charge.
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Nov 13, 2005
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GTA
gajego wrote:
Mar 12th, 2009 5:52 pm
Hello There,

We moved into a new subdivision, and the builder, part of the initial contract of sale-purchase, added $1,000 grading deposit. It's been over 4 years since we moved, and the builder still refuses to return our money, depite the numerous letters and phonecalls that I've made to their office. They are saying that the City has not fully taken responsibility over the subdivision.

We called the City and the Engineering Department told us over the phone that the Subdivision is fully assumed. I even got a copt of the by-law, that I've faxed to the builder.
The builder still refuses to return our money. We got back to the City again, and they said that they are not responsible (which I understand) and they suggested that and I should sue the builder in small court in order to get my money back....

Anyone experienced this? An advise would be appreciated.
I thnaked you earlier for reminding me about my grading deposit with Greenpark ($800). I spoke to their head office and they told me that the city should be taking over the subdivision by July '09 here in Brampton. I also confirmed this with our regional councellor. So be patient. Its been 4 years since I moved here too.

sk
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Jun 28, 2007
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I paid a $2,500 additional grading deposit to my homebuilder (on top of the $1,000 I deposited during our closing) because I had a pool installed. Our area has not been assumed by the municipality yet.

Anyways, the 3rd party engineer hired by the homebuilder to inspect the post pool construction, cleared off on everything done but said I couldn't get me pool deposit released back to me until a) my curb gutters were cleaned and b) that the swales at the rear of my house (which were not comprimised in any way during the pool construction) were filled with a thin layer of rock.

The problem is those swales have been left in the same condition that the developer left it when they originally did the grading and sodding. Why would the developer withhold my pool deposit for this when they already have my original $1,000 grading deposit? Can a homebuilder legally withhold the additional $2,500 even if nothing has been done??

BTW: the town's permit department has already cleared off on our pool construction.
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