California home builders have decided to take their fight against home buyer construction defect lawsuits onto the small screen in people’s living rooms. A new television advertising campaign will spotlight the problems homeowners might face if they contact an attorney to resolve a construction dispute with a home builder.

The ads are intended to combat “concerted efforts by defect lawyers seeking to draw homeowners into ill-advised group lawsuits,” according a statement from the Homebuilders Association of Northern California. The spots urge homeowners to “talk to the builder, not their lawyer,” and they direct homeowners to the California Building Industry Association’s Web site, where they can get more information about how to resolve a home-construction dispute.

The ads are “needed to inform homeowners about the potential problems they face when they file lawsuits,” Frank Denney, VP of operations for Cobblestone Homes in Santa Rosa and chairman of the builders group, said.

The three ads, “Welcome Home,” “Lawyer Plumber” and “For Sale, Forever,” were filmed in Tracy, Calif., during March and will air on cable television networks in the San Francisco Bay Area from May 10 through early November, the local group said in a statement.

The “Welcome Home” ad shows a car pulling into a driveway and waiting while the garage door sporadically opens and closes. The ad’s message is that even the nicest homes sometimes need maintenance.

The “Lawyer Plumber” ad shows a man in a business suit working under a kitchen sink with his briefcase and a plunger by his side and reaching for his cellphone amid legal papers.

The “For Sale, Forever” ad shows a home’s for-sale sign and additional signs of desperation that were added after the owner sued the home builder.

The builders association is comprised of 108 builders who last year built 13,600 homes, or 80 percent of all the new homes built in northern California.


Send tips or a letter to the editor to or call (510) 658-9252, ext. 124.

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