April 6, 2004
PROTECTION DIVISION ISSUES CEASE AND DESIST ORDER AGAINST MONTGOMERY
COUNTY HOME BUILDER
General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today that his Consumer
Division has issued a cease and desist order against a home builder
who it alleges took deposits and payments from consumers but failed
to build the homes.
Division has charged Jeffrey Bryant of Bethesda and Advanced
Building Solutions, Inc. of Beltsville with entering into contracts
with consumers to construct homes in Montgomery and Prince George’s
County, accepting partial payment from those consumers, but not
beginning construction or refunding the consumers’ monies.
Division further alleged that Bryant and Advanced Building Solutions,
Inc. violated the Maryland Custom Home Protection
Act and the New Homes Deposits Act by failing to place deposits
payments into an escrow account or having a surety bond to
cover the deposit and that they violated the Consumer Protection
by failing to build the homes as promised. The charges also
allege that Bryant entered into contracts to build homes using
Precision Group, Inc., whose application to register as a home
builder was denied by the Division’s Home Builder Registration
Unit. Maryland law requires home builders to register with
the Consumer Protection Division to build new homes in Maryland.
Building Solutions’ registration expired September 1, 2003.
The Division’s ex parte order immediately bars Jeffrey Bryant
and Advanced Building Solutions, Inc. from acting or offering to
act as a home builder in the State of Maryland and requires Bryant
and Advanced Building Solutions, Inc. to pay $71,956 in restitution
to the four consumers identified in the Division’s statement
of charges. The order further requires Bryant and Advanced to pay
restitution to any other consumers who have been harmed by their
Builders who fail to comply with Maryland’s laws protecting
home buyers and their deposits will face severe penalties," Curran
addition to the restitution ordered, a hearing on the charges
is scheduled for June 18, 2004 at the Office
Hearings to determine whether civil penalties of $1,000
per violation should be imposed, although the Respondents
may request a hearing
on the Division’s ex parte order.
public hearing on the charges will be held at the Maryland Office
of Administrative Hearings, 11101 Gilroy
Valley, beginning on June 18, 2004. Consumers who may
have had problems
with Jeffrey Bryant, Advanced Building Solutions, Inc.
or the Precision Group, Inc. should call the Home Builder
at (410) 576-6573 or toll-free 1-877-259-4525.