Attorney General Sues House Flippers for Serial Shoddy and Unlawful Work, Shares Tips for Home-Buyers and Renovators

Suit against Hofgards Part of OAG’s Expanded Efforts to Protect the District’s Consumers

Washington, DC – The Office of the Attorney General (OAG) today filed a consumer-protection lawsuit in D.C. Superior Court against Insun and Jefferson Hofgard, a Virginia-based couple who have sold multiple inadequately and improperly renovated properties to homeowners in the District. Their actions have been costly to multiple D.C. residents in terms of repairs to bring the homes up to code as well as potential losses in the value of their homes. The individual costs range from the tens of thousands of dollars to, potentially, more than $100,000.

The suit accuses the couple of repeatedly:

  • Skimping on construction work;
  • Using sub-standard materials;
  • Making renovations and repairs of sub-standard quality;
  • Failing to obtain the proper permits for work done;
  • Performing work on homes that includes features for which the homes are not properly zoned, rendering the features worthless;
  • Using non-licensed contractors to perform work;
  • Neglecting to have the properties properly inspected at the required times;
  • And other violations of the District’s Consumer Protection Procedures Act and the District’s Construction Codes.

“The Hofgards purchased homes, performed substandard and potentially dangerous work on them, and then sold them to District residents for hundreds of thousands of dollars,” Attorney General Karl A. Racine said. “They have taken unlawful advantage of our residents, and we will pursue all legal means to ensure that they are no longer allowed to sell shoddily renovated homes in the District and that they pay the homeowners they’ve wronged for the work required to fix their properties.”

The suit was filed after investigators from the District’s Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) investigated multiple complaints against the Hofgards from District residents. DCRA referred the cases to OAG, which has the ability to file complaints in court against business owners for violations of the District’s Consumer Protection Procedures Act and Construction Codes.

“This is a great example of collaboration between DCRA and OAG to protect our consumers in the District of Columbia,” Attorney General Racine said. “We have asked the D.C. Council to re-establish a Consumer Protection Fund for the District to expand our capacity to bring cases like this one as well as other consumer-protection actions for our residents.”

A copy of OAG’s complaint against the Hofgards is attached.

FAQs for Home Renovators and Purchasers of Renovated Homes

To better educate and protect consumers, OAG today released a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) guide for those considering purchasing a renovated home or hiring contractors to renovate their current home.

Please see attachments for more information.