Home Buying in 56003>Question Details

Half12pint, Home Buyer in 56003

How do we take undisclosed damaged home that we purchased to a national news level?

Asked by Half12pint, 56003 Wed Aug 8, 2012

My husband and I purchased our first home in Dec. 2011 Within a week of moving in we found things just randomly falling apart. In Feb of this year (2 months later) we made the discovery that 9 months prior to our purchasing it, the home sustained SEVERE water damage throughout and the seller never told us. We have the property disclosure signed by them saying the house never sustained any water damage. They were aware of it, this was a "flipped" home that we bought from an agent/owner who was representing the only and original owner at the time the damage occured. We have met with attorneys all willing to take the case but not with out big retainer fees and hourly rates that we could never pay. (NONE of them will do contigency due to the fact that these cases are often settled in mediation and money is never awarded to pay atty fees.) Becasue we have no funds to fight we suffer?? They broke the law and we want people to know. Help please!

Help the community by answering this question:


1) How did you discover that there was sever water damage throughout the home?
2) How will you prove that the seller new this and hid if from you?
3) Why did your inspector not catch these issues?
4) Why did you not sign an arbitration agreement?

Arbitration would certainly have been a form you should have signed because it is cost effective, and as long as you can prove the seller hid a material fact from you I think you have a pretty decent case of winning. It must be obvious to prove that the seller knew of the issue and essentially hid it from you that is the key to winning.

And I agree with Tim keep searching attorney's. The other thing you can do is go to the commerce department and file a complaint, and also maybe even go to the association that the listing realtor practices and file a complaint.

Good luck

1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 8, 2012
sorry it took so long to reply here...for some VERY ANNOYING reason trulia does not notify me when someone replies to my post. If the home is in Ohio they may not have that form (but they should). It would have been perfect in this situation. The other thing too is that even though you may have to pay attorney fees I am fairly certain you win this case. If that happens the owners ultimately pay your attorneys not you right? You have witnesses and evidence. What is the update with this situation anyways?
Flag Tue Mar 5, 2013
The rbitration agreement? I have never heard of that and Im surprised that with all the attys we have seen no one has mentioned it. I will check through our paper work to see if we have one. If we dont im not surprised. These people knew what they were doing and we didnt so they probobly left it out intentionaly. I have already been in contact with the ohio dept of commerce and they are sending me the paper to file a complaint and investigation. Unfortunately they cant get us repairs so we are still hoping we can find a "newbie" to law that might be looking to put a win under his belt. I thank kindly for your time and response! It has given me something to follow up.
Flag Fri Aug 10, 2012
Thank you for the response. In answer to your questions: We found out because the toliet overflowed one night. I ran to get a neighbor to help me and he asked if I was aware what ahd happened. He told me the story. Within a few days I found the original owner and contacted him. He gave me the full details. The seller signed a property disclosure form saying the house never had any kind of water damage. The knew because they were the real estate company representing the original owner. The damage occured and with the house not being lived in there was no insurance and there fore was a big lose for the family. The real estate comapny offered to purchase the home for a considerable less amount of money. They did and then "flipped" it. Or should I say just covered up everything literally. (all of the damage is still in place under the remodeling- flooring, walls ect. They left it there and just put new flooring on top and painted.)
Flag Fri Aug 10, 2012
Take out an ad in the local newspapers and/or television stations where the seller and agent live.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 1, 2015
Maybe check with the Consumer Federal of America. Also, try getting a hold of Joel Stern, he has gone through taking something Nationally because of "Undisclosed Dual Agency" he may have some words of advice for you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 4, 2013
Did everyone sign the arbitration agreement? That might be an option.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 8, 2012
I have never heard of this. But i will look in the paperwork to see if we have one. If not I wouldnt be surprised if they intentionaly "forgot" it, since they knew what they were doing and we did not. Thank you for the response!
Flag Fri Aug 10, 2012
There must be starving lawyers out there you can find. Keep looking.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 8, 2012
Absolutely! If anything I am persistant. Worse case senario we see if the media is interested in the story. Itmight not fix the house but it will let people know what low lives these people are. My parents raised me in that in America we have rights and breaking the law would not be tolerated. What they didnt mention was that, that only stands to truth if a person has the money to hire an atty! How sad. But we wont go down quietly. Thankn you for your response!
Flag Fri Aug 10, 2012
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