Turns out global pop music superstar Rihanna isn’t the only famous person who’s recently filed a toothy lawsuit against the seller of a high-priced mansion. New reports out of Austin, TX reveal the latest high-profile Showbizzer to sue the sellers of a recently renovated residence for which he spent many millions of dollars is actor Dennis Quaid (Great Balls of Fire, The Big Easy and the unfortunate remake of Footloose).
Your Mama discussed the compact, Lake Austin compound in question in January (2011) after Lonestar State tipster Tawny Twostepper tattled to Your Mama about the transaction even before the deal had been completed. At that time the multi-story mansion was no longer on the open market but based on documentation provided by Miss Twostepper we ascertained it was last listed at $12,000,000.
We don’t know why and wouldn’t dream of making any presumptions or suppositions about the seller’s motivation(s) but records we peeped show the property was purchased in mid-February 2011–through a trust–for $5,312,500, a figure notably less than the one-time and obviously optimistic asking price of twelve million clams. The complete property encompasses two lots, one on the water and another on the bluff above it. Unfortunately, the deeds and docs in to which we dug down are bit vague so it’s not entirely clear if the above purchase price reflects the total paid for both lots or just for the bluff top section where the massive main house is perched. Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?
Older listing information provided to us by the generous Miss Twostepper shows the main house was remodeled in 2007, measures 11,103 square feet and includes 6 bedrooms and 7 full and 4 half poopers. A bridge and glute-busting staircase connects the bluff-top mansion to the water’s edge where there’s a swimming pool, boat house and–hot-cha-cha–an FAA-approved helipad.
The Austin 360 website reports the Quaid’s filed the lawsuit was filed Monday and charges the sellers Blake and Monica Byram–prominent members of Austin’s business, social and philanthropic communities–with “breach of contract, fraud and negligent misrepresentation.” Oh dear.
The suit goes on accuse the sellers of making “a number of material representations regarding the condition and characteristics of the property that were false. At the time the various representations were made, defendants knew they were false.” More oh dear.
The suit specifies that some of the issues that negatively impact the property’s livability and value include, as per Austin 360, “water intrusion and damage; a rat infestation; poor work done during remodeling projects; and that some of the remodeling projects were done without obtaining building permits from the city,” issues all of which are alleged in the suit to have been “well known to the Byrams prior to the sale of the property…”And even more oh dear.
We certainly don’t have a pony in this parade and make no claims whatsoever as to who might have the better case–buyer or seller–but we have to assume Mister and Missus Quaid spent big bucks to hire numerous, extremely competent engineers and various other types of property inspectors to conduct due diligence before they plunked down millions of dollars for a swank waterside roost. Right? But then again, what do we know.
Mister and Missus Quaid’s suit seeks a jury trial to nullify the sale of the property and the return of the purchase price as well as seeking additional damages for expenses related to moving into the mansion, the costs associated with moving out of the mansion and into the rental house in Austin to where they’ve decamped, compensation for mental anguish, and–natch–court costs and attorney’s fees.
Mister and Missus Quaid have lately been in the mood to shake up their property portfolio. They recently put their horsey compound–last listed at $10,000,000–in bucolic Mandeville Canyon area of Los Angeles in escrow. As best as we can tell, they continue to own another even more equestrian-oriented estate nearby. All the celebrity gossips went hog wild a few weeks ago when it was first reported the busy Tinseltowner heaved a Montana ranch on the market with a $14,000,000 price tag and revealed he planned to buy a house in Hawaii where he could indulge his newest passion: surfing.
listing photos: Buckman & Company via Real Estate Space