Home Local Man calls LaFayette home “house of horrors

Man calls LaFayette home “house of horrors


There is nothing like
the feeling of home own-
ership and a Sylacauga
man purchased a home
more than a decade ago in
LaFayette with big dreams
to turn the home into the
gem of LaFayette but has
experienced one horror
story after another with
the home and now sees
the property as a house
of horrors after multiple
instances of bad luck have
touched the property dur-
ing his ownership.
David Phillps pur-
chased a home at 202
Alabama Avenue East in
2007. The historic home
which was built in 1903
was in a state of neglect
when purchased by Phil-
lips, but that did not sway
Phillips from purchasing
the property with a vision
to fix it up while per

forming work at nearby
Auburn University.
One of the first goals of
home repair became one
of the first instances of
horror for Phillips and the
property. Phillips noted
that he paid $10,000 to
have a custom-built roof
put on the property. Hav-
ing paid the contractor
upfront on the work for
the property proved to be
a mistake. As the Lanett-
based contractor came
out and began the work, a
portion was left unfinished
according to Phillips.
Phillips had a contract
in place with the contrac-
tor that guaranteed the
work would be done in
a certain amount of time
or a $125 a day penalty
would be assessed to the
contractor. Upon reaching
out to the contractor it was
learned that the contrac-
tor was unable to finish
the roof because they had
spent all the money paid
up front on the project.
Once the $125 a day
penalty had reached the
cost of the roof itself,
Phillips notes he sought
legal action against the
contractor and sought to
sue the roofing contractor.
“It was weird no lawyer
would take the case. It
seemed odd that a lawyer
would not want to sue
someone,” said Phillips.
As he researched further
he learned that the reason
no one would sue the
company is because there
was already a large num-
ber of judgements against
the company and he
would be so far down the
list it was not worth any
lawyer’s time and efforts.
Aside from his troubles
with the unfinished roof,
in 2010 a problem oc-
curred with a burglary
at the residence. Phillips
who works as an urban
planning consultant oper-
ated his business out of
the home and the burglary
impacted documents
related to his business that
were stored at the resi-
dence as well as damage
to the home sustained
during the burglary.
Shortly after the bur-
glary the stretch of bad
luck continued for Phillips
and his home he pur-
chased in LaFayette. Phil-
lips notes a large 80-foot
tree fell on a portion of the
home and damaged the
custom roof that he had
began to have installed
years before. The 100-year
old tree was more than
five feet wide according to
Phillips. The massive tree
penetrated the roof.
The falling of the tree
was only the beginning of
the problems for Phillips
and the tree problems at
the residence. Phillips in-
dicates that he went back
and forth with the city
over time about whose
property the tree was on,
his or the city right of
Ultimately, he gave up
on that battle and had a
bucket truck come in and
remove a portion of the
tree on his property. A
section of the tree that re-
mained on his roof above
the living room was left
in place after the bucket
truck removed the rest of
the tree.
At some point someone
came and removed the
remaining portion of the
tree from the roof and
caused additional dam-
age to the roof with its removal. Phillips is unsure
who removed the tree and
at first suspected it was
a crew from the city of
LaFayette. Last week city
officials informed Phillips
that they did not remove
the tree from his private
property. Whoever re-
moved the tree tore a hole
in the front portion of the
home near the living room
where most of the damage
was isolated to.
“I planned to turn this
into the nicest house in
LaFayette but have had a
long bad history with this
house,” said Phillips. As
he addressed city council
last week he noted that
his plans are to accept his
loses which include up to
$50,000 in renovations
and improvements he has
invested in the home and
put it up for sale soon.
Phillips even offered to
sell the property to the city
for possible use as training
for the fire department if
they were interested, but
plans to sell the prop-
erty in the near future to
whoever is interested in
purchasing the home.
LaFayette Streets
Superintendent George
Green updates council
on the issues with the
property at 202 Alabama
Avenue East in LaFayette.
David Phillips (right) is
the property owner of the
residence which has seen a
long list of bad luck since
he purchased it in 2007