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Nondisclosure is a serious problem in real estate transactions

On Behalf of | May 19, 2022 | Real Estate Litigation

When the seller doesn’t adequately reveal a property’s actual condition in the appropriate disclosures, you may have a valid claim to take up with them in court. You may have a legal right to seek compensation or other remedies if you’re successful in taking legal action against them.

Nondisclosure can’t apply in cases where a seller doesn’t know about a defect, such as if there was a foundational issue that wasn’t visible or damage that was hidden behind the walls of the property. Nondisclosure happens when the seller knows the true condition of the property but tries to hide it.

What are some examples of problem nondisclosures?

Some forms of nondisclosure that end up with a seller facing legal liability include:

  • Negligent misrepresentation
  • Intentional misrepresentation
  • Constructive fraud
  • Concealment

As a buyer, you need to speak up if you find a defect in the property that you believe the seller knew about and didn’t disclose.

What can you do if you find defects that the seller didn’t tell you about?

If you find defects, such as seeing that the basement floods or that the property has damage painted over, and know that the seller should have known about these issues, you should consider looking into your legal options. If the purchase hasn’t been completed, you may be able to back out legally. You may also be able to collect damages.

It’s serious when a seller doesn’t disclose defects. Your investment could be worth less than expected or cost more to repair than you thought. It’s worth looking into your legal options if the seller lied or misrepresented the property.