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Purchased house July 2016. Since then i have discovered multiple structural and electrical issues that threaten the safety of myself and children daily. I recently discovered that my kitchen has particle board instead of exterior walls, I have asbestos and knob and tube tied into Romex at visible points so it would appear electrical was updated, rotten out section of subfloor that shoukd have been caught on inspection, a
Asked on September 27, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Indiana
S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 4 years ago | Contributor
You can sue the seller for fraud and the home inspector for negligence.
Fraud is the intentional misrepresentation or nondisclosure of a material fact made with knowledge of its falsity and with the intent to induce your reliance upon which you justifiably relied to your detriment.
In other words, you would not have purchased the house had you known its true condition.
Your damages (monetary compensation you are seeking in your lawsuit for fraud) would be either benefit of the bargain or your out of pocket loss.
Benefit of the bargain means a defrauded purchaser may recover the difference between the real and represented value of the property purchased regardless of the fact that the actual loss suffered might have been less.
Out of pocket determination for damages for fraudulent misrepresentation permits recovery of the difference between the price paid and the actual value of the property acquired.
Negligence on the part of the home inspector is the failure to exercise due care (that degree of care that a reasonable home inspector would have exercised under the same or similar circumstances to prevent foreseeable harm).
Damages for negligence by the home inspector would include foreseeable harm caused by the negligence such as costs incurred for repairs.
You would file one lawsuit naming the seller (previous owner) and home inspector as defendants. The lawsuit would have separate causes of action (claims) of fraud against the seller and negligence against the home inspector.