Home Buying in Cleveland>Question Details

luv4ya9999, Home Buyer in Cleveland, OH

Bought a bank owed home in January 2014. The house is only about 10yrs old. Now finding things not working.

Asked by luv4ya9999, Cleveland, OH Sun Feb 16, 2014

The house is cold on the 2nd floor. The lights in one of the bathrooms are not working. Is the bank liable to fix anything?

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Since you closed as recently as last month, in the middle of winter..........did you check to see if the heat was working properly? In any event, more than likely, as others have already said, you are on your own and the bank will not fix anything at this point. If it is any consolation, they probably wouldn't have fixed these items even before the closing...........the light issue might be just a bulb, or perhaps an electrical issue that an electrician can easily fix................... In regard to the 2nd floor being cold, that can happen depending on how the heating system is set up - especially if it is only 1 zone - and where the furnace is located . Do you feel any heat coming through the upstairs vents when it is turned on? Call in a heating expert to help diagnose the cause of the temperature difference............. Actually, in my own home the master bedroom is located directly over the garage and, on extremely cold days, is colder than the other rooms . I looked into adding extra insulation, but it didn't seem worth it to me.....so........ a space heater takes care of that "problem" when it is especially cold out (like now!)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 17, 2014
Yes, that IS what you purchased. IN those mountains of paper work are these words repeated many times "HOLD HARMLESS' and that IS the protection the bank now has. Before you let remorse rob you, remind yourself you got a GREAT deal on this purchase. You knew there was risk before you purchased. Your agent advised you. The listing agent advised. Then the bank advised you and made you sign the addendum. You got a great deal. Keep that at the front of your mind as other surprises may surface.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 17, 2014
Ordinarily, bank or no bank, the seller has no liability for anything that is wrong with the house post-closing, with very few exceptions. Did you have the home inspected? Regardless, unless the seller, regardless of who it was, hid something or failed to disclose you are probably on your own.

A light not working is so minor that it might not even be an issue pre-closing. And "cold upstairs?" If the heat was on when you walked through the house was it cold upstairs then?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 17, 2014
When buying a bank owned home its one of the few times buyer beware still hold true, keep in mind the bank normally has no idea whats wrong with the house. The bank never lived in the home and never set foot in it until it was foreclosed. I have seen 3 year old foreclosed homes that had almost 80% of the electrical wires stolen from the attic and crawl space and the bank never knew. For these reasons its critical to do your own inspections or hire a qualified trusted home inspector. 99% of the time the banks are not trying to hide anything they just don't know, the bank doesn't inspect the homes when they list them for sale. Typically the bank just boards up broken windows and makes sure the grass gets cut until the home is sold. Many times the bank will turn on the water and power but they don't check each circuit to see if it works. Same goes with the AC, typically if they see a AC unit they say the home has AC that's it. So I am going to say with 99% certainty the bank is not liable to fix anything. But on the bright side being a bank owned home I am sure you got a good deal so if some things need fixing you will still be ahead in the long run.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Feb 16, 2014
More than likely the bank required a bank addendum signed by you and them as part of the sales contract making direct statements along the lines of making no guarantees warranties about the condition of the property or its components. The level of disclosure required be law is very limited when a seller never occupied the property, so holding them to any standard of disclosure is not really possible. If they made repairs to these items for you and they now are defective, that may be another story. If not, I think you are on your own unfortunately. Generally the act of closing on these properties consummates your acceptance of the property in its current condition and severs all ties and obligations from the bank seller. This would all be laid out in the bank addendum if there was one. If not, you may be in luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Feb 16, 2014
Luv,
Without reviewing your paperwork I can't say for certain, but I've never read a bank contract that accepted responsibility for so much as a burnt out light bulb. In most cases you have an inspection or due diligence period to investigate everything you can.
You may have more success with the builder if they are still around. The issues you mention don't sound too serious. Check the insulation upstairs and see if your furnace fan can be increased to push more heat throughout the house. A light fixture isn't too expensive, depending on what you choose.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Feb 16, 2014
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