Home Buying in 94043>Question Details

Armond Baraj…, Home Buyer in Sacramento, CA

who is responsible for dryrot repairs when buying a home?

Asked by Armond Barajas, Sacramento, CA Wed Jul 24, 2013

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Hello Armond,

Dry rot repairs along with spraying for termites are fees that are negotiable between Buyer's and Seller's. That being said, many Seller's do end up paying for what is called Section 1 repairs. That is the HOME HAS termites AND OR has dry rot and must be repaired prior to close of escrow. Many Buyer's end up covering Section 2 repairs. That is you DO NOT have termites AND OR dry rot, thou you do have certain conditions that could lead to one or both at a later time after close of escrow.

Ultimately Armond, you will need to consult with your Realtor to determine what was agreed upon in your purchase agreement with the Seller's. I hope this helps. Best of luck!

Warmest Regards,

1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 24, 2013
The lenders most of the time require that the dry rot is fixed before they will close on the house.
Well, before closing it is still the sellers house and so if they want it to close they had better fix the dry rot. It does not make sense that a buyer would fix a house spending sometimes a couple of thousand with the risk of the seller backing out of the deal.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 9, 2013
Most standard contracts contain a clause that covers the specifics of "wood destroying organisms." I would check with your agent on the wording of the contract that would be used and how it would impact your options. It would also be important to determine if "dry rot" could be treated as a "wood destroying organism."

Standard contracts also specify repair limits for the various types of repairs, structural, WDO, permits, etc. that are a responsibility of the seller. Having a clear appreciation for these limits relative to the contract is recommended.

Your agent should be able to guide you through this.

Good luck,

0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 25, 2013
A basic principle in real estate sales is that the buyer is expected to perform their own due diligence. This would include having the property inspected. The purchase offer/contract would specify how much time the buyer has before they have to remove their contingency. If the buyer's inspection finds problems the buyer can terminate his purchase offer or try to negotiate with the seller to pay towards repairs. The seller is under no obligation to negotiate.

Often seller's provide inspection reports and give strong preference to offers which have removed inspection contingencies.

However one point not already touched upon is if the seller knew they had problems and did not disclose them the lack of disclosure provides you with some bargaining power. However it does not guarantee the seller will pay for the repairs he may prefer to let you void the contract.

Unless the dry rot is quite severe, or the homeowner has had an inspection done, the owner probably wouldn't know their home has dry rot. If they don't know about it nor have reason to suspect it, they can't disclose it.

Even though the seller does not have to pay for repairs, they may consider paying for them. Negotiating skills are one of the things that an experienced agent can use to make your purchase a much better deal for you.

Mountain View home values posted at http://julianalee.com/mountain-view/mountain-view-statistics.htm
Zip 94043 home values posted at http://julianalee.com/zip-code/94043-statistics.htm

Juliana Lee
Top 2 agent nationwide at Keller Williams Realty, the nations largest
Cell 650-857-1000

Over 20 years experience
Over 1,000 homes sold in Santa Clara County and San Mateo County
Web Reference: http://julianalee.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 25, 2013
As all the others have stated, everything is negotiable.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 24, 2013
It depends on what what negotiated in the contract. If the contract says the seller will do all Sect 1 work found by the buyer's termite company then that is the report they go on. If it says the seller will do all the Sect 1 work found by the seller's termite inspection then that is what is done. If it says the house is being sold "As Is" then the buyer is responsible to do the work.

Marcy Moyer
Keller Williams Realty
BRE 01191194
Web Reference: http://www.marcymoyer.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 24, 2013
Hi Armond:

Assuming you're working with a Realtor, you really need to pose this question to him/her to get the proper answer. As the others have noted, the standard California Association of Realtors (CAR) contract, which is the one that most of us use UNLESS another is requested by the listing agent, seller, or the bank (if a foreclosure home), is as "as is" contract, meaning that you are buying the home as it is, in its present condition as represented to you by the seller.

Now, things can change a little, if you did not know that these condition existed. For example, if you were not provided with inspection reports for the home, and you hired the termite company to find problem areas and then were told about the dry-rot problems. In this case, the facts are new and unknown to you at the time the purchase contract was made. As a result, you might be able to negotiate who pays for these repairs. Again, speak to your Realtor regarding what steps to take regarding the repairs.

On the off-chance that this home is a condominium and not a single family detached home, the homeowners association rather than the home buyer or seller is responsible for repairs of the exterior of the home. This particular maintenance responsibility is applicable ONLY to condominiums and not to attached homes that are considered "planned developments" because only a condominium association owns the buildings.

So, in the end, trust your agent to offer you the best advice on what to do next. Remember, you can always ask that the seller pay for certain items, but there is absolutely no guarantee that the seller will comply. And if your real estate market is as impacted as ours, there may certainly be another buyer willing to "step into" your shoes and buy the home even with the outstanding dry-rot repairs.

Good luck!
Grace Morioka
Allison James Estates & Homes
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 24, 2013
It is a negotiable item in the contract. Our C.A.R. (California Association of Realtor) contract is an as-is contract. So it would need an addendum if the seller is paying for it.

The real estate market dictates what concessions the seller is willing to give to the Buyer. In Santa Clara County right now most, if not all, contracts the buyer is assuming those repairs.

If you are working with an agent, be sure to have this discussion prior to writing an offer so that you have an understanding of the market and the contract.

Have an amazing day!
Web Reference: http://www.TerriVellios.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 24, 2013
It depends. The responsibilities should be spelled out in the purchase contract or in a separate agreement.
Web Reference: http://talisrealestate.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 24, 2013
Hi Armond,
As Matthew mentioned, responsibility for 'Section 1', or any other repairs is negotiable between buyer and seller.
Residential Purchase Contracts default to 'As-Is', which means that the buyer assumes responsibility for these repairs, so if you want to make the seller responsible, you need to actively include this term in the agreement.
So saying, in a market where multiple offers are common, it is very, very likely that another potential buyer will offer to accept the property along with all of it's flaws, and not require the seller to take responsibility for repairs, so you need to assess the situation carefully before proceeding.
Good luck,
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 24, 2013
Did you have a Contingency for your Inspections?
Did you have any Inspections?
You probably just bought some Dry Rot.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 24, 2013
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