Do I have legal recourse against a seller of my home if there is a major defect that was not disclosed?

UPDATED: Jul 28, 2011

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Do I have legal recourse against a seller of my home if there is a major defect that was not disclosed?

I recently purchased a home and the home inspection did not include a roof inspection due to snow on the roof. I asked the home owner real estate agent how much life was left on the roof and she noted 5-10 year was left. The homeowners signed a property condition disclosure statement noting the age of the roof was unknown. I now need to have a complete tear off as well as some sub roofing (pile wood) repaired. Do I have any recourse against the owners because this major deficiency should have been known by them and disclosed to me before I purchased the home?

Asked on July 28, 2011 New York


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Potentially, you have recourse against the sellers if they knew about the defective conditions of the home's roof before close of escrow and did not disclose this fact before close.

You might have an action against your own real estate agent if he or she did not advise you of the need to have a thorough inspection of the property by third party experts before cose of escrow.

Your measure of damages ordinarily would be the current costs of repair or the diminution in value of the purchase price of the home given its defective condition whichever is less.

You should consult with an expereinced real estate attorney on your matter to assist you about the roof problem.

Good luck.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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