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Considering purchasing a Highpoint Flats condo in Muskegon?

Watch out for Jon Rooks and his development companies. He has a track record in Grand Rapids of building sub-par quality condos.

His main outlets for his development projects are Parkland Realty, Parkland Properties, Parkland Development, and Parkland Development of West Michigan. He has many business entities, so you never know which one you are dealing with. His biggest project is the Boardwalk Condos in Grand Rapids, and he is also working on developing Highpoint Flats in Muskegon.

Beware of Jon Rooks, his development companies, and his main partner in development, Brad Gruizinga. These people mislead buyers, provide extremely shoddy and low quality workmanship, cut every possible corner, lie when they are confronted, and then absolve themselves of any ownership of problems after the sale, leaving their customers with unfinished condos and bad quality work. Here are just a few actual situations that purchasers of Jon Rooks' condos have experienced:

1. Low quality construction work with little soundproofing. Many owners of Parkland condo developments experience major problems with sound transmission between condos and with hallways and common areas. No insulation was used in walls, leaving just a few layers of drywall between units. Hearing your neighbors talk or smelling the food they are cooking are common experiences. Sales literature spoke of "excellent" soundproofing. However, when confronted with this, residents are told to get sound tests, at the cost of several thousand dollars, before they will lift a finger to help out. Even then, residents are strung along until they simply give up trying to get anything fixed.

2. When you close on your condo, you are given a "punch list" of construction items that need to be corrected. You see, Rooks and his company pressured many people to close on their condos before they were completely finished. The problem is that once the closing documents are signed, Parkland and Jon Rooks are completely absolved of any further legal responsibility for the construction. People that closed on their condos years ago still have not had their punch lists completed. Jon Rooks and his partner Brad Gruizinga won't lift a finger to get things done. Some examples of ongoing problems are soundproofing (previously mentioned), peeling paint, poor drywall workmanship, plaster that was very badly repaired, leaking windows, incorrectly completed flooring, construction plans that were not correctly followed, etc.

3. Jon Rooks and his company advertising one of his developments as "luxury condos." Owners were promised exercise facilities and two laundry rooms. However, after moving in, Rooks' company purchased used exercise equipment that broke down less than a year later. Owners were then stuck with the bill of thousands of dollars to replace the equipment. Owners were promised two laundry rooms, but Rooks decided that only one was necessary, with only two washers and dryers for 180 condos. After construction was completed, owners were told that it would cost tens of thousands of dollars to add additional laundry facilities.

4. Jon Rooks and Brad Gruizinga have the condo association documents written so that they maintain control over the condo association even when 95% or more of the condos have been sold. They appoint their pals to run the association board and do not allow owners to take control. They ensure that their buddies get the lucrative management and maintenance contracts, to the detriment of owners. They do not utilize the condo association to the best interest of owners, only to the interest of Rooks and his pals.

5. In one instance, the owners of a condo building were told by Parkland and Rooks that they were "testing" the look of cell phone towers on top of the building. After residents complained, they were told that they were being taken down. However, only weeks later, half a dozen cell phone towers were put up, only feet from people's bedroom windows. Residents were lied to and ignored when their concerns were brought up.

6. Jon Rooks and Brad Gruizinga make every effort to get residents to give up when they have problems with their condos. They both say that the other person is responsible and then conveniently forget to return calls. Residents have been screamed at, sworn at, and treated with extreme levels of cruelty and obnoxiousness by Jon Rooks and Brad Gruizinga. They work very hard to obstruct efforts of residents to get responses to problems. Most residents just give up and many have decided to move on or move out.

7. Jon Rooks is a pathological liar. You can't believe anything he says. Promises are made and they reneged. Rooks and his companies have a history of this behavior. They were even sued and lost over a broken promise several years ago. Whenever confronted with information about his broken promises, he claims that they were "misunderstandings." Jon Rooks should be treated at all times as though he is lying and working against your best interest. You should treat everything he says with extreme skepticism. He lies on a continual basis. Essentially, if his mouth is moving, he is probably lying.

8. If you go to Jon Rooks or Brad Gruizinga with any problems, you are treated as you in fact are the one that has done something wrong. If you complain about construction quality or broken promises, Rooks and Gruizinga will treat you as though they have done everything they possibly could and that it's outside of their realm of abilities to help you out. They will do nothing to help or fix things. Don't believe them. They are lying and just unwilling to help because it would cost them a few extra dollars. There is no corner they wouldn't cut to save themselves money.

9. The Parkland (and Highpoint Flats) web site says that other Parkland condos are reselling for much more than they originally sold for. This is also untrue. People in Parkland's other projects are stuck. Many have had to sell for less than they paid and others are renting them out because they can't afford to sell. Foreclosures are also building up from people just walking away rather than losing money on a resale.

In summation, Jon Rooks, Brad Gruizinga, and all the Parkland companies should be avoided. They screwed so many people over in Grand Rapids (both buyers and contractors) that they had to move on to Muskegon for their next project - Highpoint Flats. Watch out. Rooks and his companies used all the lowest bidders and lowest quality contractors in Grand Rapids. They apparently drove several contractors out of business, leaving owners with no one to turn to with construction problems. The contractors that worked with Rooks in Grand Rapids will not do business with him again.

Rooks has the nickname of "Jon Crooks" in Grand Rapids, amongst those who have done business with him. Essentially, it comes down to this: Jon Rooks screws people over for a living.

Stay away: Highpoint Flats in Muskegon and Boardwalk Condos in Grand Rapids.

Parkland Properties, Parkland Realty, Parkland Development, Parkland Development of West Michigan.

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Comments

  • Pa
      May 19, 2010

    Beware Parkland Realty, Parkland Properties, Inc., Parkland Investments purchase agreement and/or contract! It contains a binding arbitration cause. By signing their purchase agreement you agree to waive your right to sue, and have a judge or jury trial if a dispute shall arise. This company has been involved in several lawsuits, and has violated State Laws, EPA regulations and Association of Realtor guidelines. Personally, with this companies history and reputation in the community, I would not feel at ease signing their purchase agreement to purchase at Boardwalk Condos in Grand Rapids, Union Square Condos in Grand Rapids, and Highpoint Flats Condos in downtown Muskegon.
    All their troubles are public record and available through Freedom of Information Act!

    Binding Mandatory Arbitration

    What is arbitration?

    Arbitration is an alternative method of resolving disputes in which two parties present their individual sides of a complaint to an arbitrator or panel of arbitrators. The arbitrator, who is supposed to be neutral, then weighs the facts and arguments of both parties and decides the dispute. Arbitration may be voluntary or mandatory.

    What is Binding Mandatory Arbitration (BMA)?

    Pre-dispute binding mandatory arbitration clauses effectively amount to “take-it-or-leave-it” conditions. The consumer or employee essentially waives (often without his or her knowledge) the right to sue, or to participate in a class action lawsuit. Want a job, want health insurance, want a loan, a credit card, or a rent-a-car? You often have no choice but to give up your right to a day in court.

    What is wrong with binding arbitration?

    Arbitration for consumers, employees, or small business against big business is typically a losing battle. Arbitration is often more costly than going to court. Arbitration service providers are documented by studies to give biased rulings. It is a secret system of justice with virtually no rules and no evidence or records. Arbitrators are most often hired by providers that serve big businesses
    (repeat customers), not by any one individual (who may file one claim in a lifetime), and those arbitrators have a documented tendency to rule with the repeat customer and against the individual.


    Are these clauses easy to find in the paperwork?

    Generally not! Some companies print them in boxes, and a few have you sign a separate sheet of paper that contains the clause. Most companies simply make the clauses an extra paragraph of fine print in their contracts. Some companies call these clauses “Dispute Resolution Mechanism” and other equally ambiguous names.

    How prevalent is mandatory arbitration?

    The use of binding mandatory arbitration is increasing in all contracts.

    Almost all credit card companies, car dealer, cell phone service providers, computer manufactures, and even the video store require consumers to arbitrate. The use of arbitration in employment disputes is also rapidly increasing. Binding arbitration has moved into contracts between independent farmers and large agro-businesses and even between nursing home patients and nursing homes.

    Are there companies that don't require mandatory arbitration clauses?

    Yes! There are plenty of good businesses that refuse to require mandatory binding arbitration. These are usually the companies with the fewest consumer complaints. Some companies that use binding arbitration provide “opt-out” clauses that allow you to send in a letter refusing the binding arbitration clause.


    How do we stop binding mandatory arbitration?


    Pass the Arbitration Fairness Act, a federal law that would simply declare that mandatory arbitration between individuals and big businesses is unenforceable, except when knowingly and voluntarily agreed to after the dispute arises or pursuant to a collective bargaining agreement.


    What can I do about the problem?

    Don't deal with any companies that require a mandatory binding arbitration clause. Before spending time with the seller—whether in person, online, or through the mail —ask the seller or service provider if they require a mandatory binding arbitration clause. If the seller does require a clause, tell the seller you won't buy from them and why.

    Visit http://www.fairarbitrationnow.org/ to learn more about forced arbitration and how you can help!

    0 Votes
  • Da
      Dec 12, 2011

    After trial in July, 2011 in Ottawa County MI Circuit Court, Case No. [protected]-CZ it was found that the factual allegations alleged on 2009-06-18 by someone else as PissedParkland were false and inappropriately placed Jon Rooks and Brad Gruizinga in a false light. The Court ordered the offending party to remove those factual inaccuracies.

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