What happens if you close on a home and only after realize that it was vandalized prior to closing?

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What happens if you close on a home and only after realize that it was vandalized prior to closing?

I closed on a home yesterday that was “as is” based on the condition agreed to in my appraisal. There were repairs required to be completed by the seller prior to closing and they were. However, the seller pushed the closing date back causing the house to remain vacant longer than expected. I viewed the house earlier in the week and it was still in the “as is” condition that I was agreeing to. However after closing I went to the house and saw that the house had been vandalized before I took possession and therefore was no longer in the “as is” condition I signed to. Do I have any rights?

Asked on October 1, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Georgia

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If the home was vandalized before you took possession of it, the real issue is to determine when the home was vandalized. The reason for this is that hopefully there was a policy of insurance covering damage to the home by the seller in place through the close date and that when you bought the home, there was a policy of insurance covering possible damage to it from the date you closed escrow.

If so, the former owner needs to make a claim under his or her insurance policy and you as well and let the insurance carriers fight over when the vandalism occurred. If there are no insurance policies in effect then it appears that unfortunately you will be responsible for having to take care of the damages caused by the vandalism.


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