Home Selling in Los Angeles>Question Details

Gbatjr, Home Buyer in Los Angeles, CA

Want to back out recently closed condo purchase - help

Asked by Gbatjr, Los Angeles, CA Mon Oct 11, 2010

I recently purchased a condo in Torrance (zip) and I have the followiong concerns:
1. My realtor ne ver told me that this zip code in Torrance (postal) not Torrance proper!!!!!!!!!!!

1. Realtor did not fully represent me (shewas a dual agent)
2. I was threatned with lawsuits if I did not close
3. I was never able to look at the property until the previous owners moved out. The property is in complete
dissaray. Linen closet gutted for what looks like an additional small room - complete with illegally
installed fluorescent lighting.
4. Living rom ffloor is not even. The floow is completely crooked with what could be foundataiont issues
5. Upstairs bathroom vent is covered up with an lillegally installed light.
I would like to backout, WHAT CAN I DO?

Help the community by answering this question:


These are all items that should have been addressed prior to closing on a property. you should have had a home inspection that would have caught structural issues and should have used some sort of due diligince to know what town you were buying in. if you already closed, at this point you need to meet with an attorney to see if you have any recourse against the agent or seller, an attorney in your area is the only one that can give you legal advice.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 11, 2010
Goodness gracious, sorry to hear about this. Unfortunately, there is no way to "backout" once you've closed. Did you have the property inspected prior to your purchase? I would suggest you consult a real estate attorney to see if you have any recourse. Best wishes to you.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 13, 2010
You should seek legal counsel to discuss your options.

Here are some general responses to the above that may or may not be 100% applicable in your situation. This is in no way to be considered legal advice.

1. The agent should not have been able to be a dual agent without your consent. If you disagreed with the representation arrangement, you should have been given the option to request another agent.
2. The contract should have outlined what would happen in the case of default. And perhaps, the party affected by the default could take legal action. Perhaps you were being told about what could happen rather than being threatened? That's for you and your attorney to decide.
3, 4 & 5 - Your contract should have had a due diligence period for inspections unless this was an "as-is" purchase. A licensed inspector should have found those issues, enabling you to have the seller address them prior to closing. I've never had a situation where the buyer was not granted access to do a proper inspection.

As a buyer, you have the right and obligation to conduct your own due diligence on the property, city and area where you're buying in. Unless you expressly told your agent you only wanted to see properties in Torrance proper, she would not have known that this was important to you.

I hope you are able to work out an acceptable solution.

Stacy Carter
Associate Broker
Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate Metro Brokers
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 11, 2010
Sorry to hear about your distress.
I would suggest to talk to an attorney about your options at this point.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 9, 2011
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 18, 2010
Hi Gabtjr:

Regret to hear about so many issues brought up after the fact. It is clear you need legal help and definitely should seek it.

This is one reason why one should have representation through a Realtor that does not have any conflict of interest.

Well clearly, as you get a good lawyer it will all come out and you go to arbitration, as to did you discount commissions, in lieu of service etc. or not. Since, you were the buyer, and you knew she was the listing agent, there is nothing illegal on the Agents part. The Seller knows, you know, so what is the issue with
it being Dual Agent now.

The CAR contract that you signed, clearly points out sadly what your rights are to look at the home before closing, what inspections you can do etc. If you closed you signed a CAR Purchase Contract, so the lawyers and judges expect you to have read the contract and followed the implied details that you signed.

If there are foundation issues then you clearly have a $50K plus potential problem that you will have to address through the HOA. Since, this is a condo the HOA will have to fix it.

Better start checking if many neighbors have such issues, check the HOA notes, did you get any HOA
meeting notes ? Check if other neighbors have brought this up in the association meetings.

If this is a HOA with several Foreclosed properties and the HOA has depleted funds then its likely a special assessment will have to be done to correct the problem.

How did you not know what the Postal Address and City is?
If you can write and post using the web and Q&A sited, you can do a Google or Trulia Map search.

The issue is simple did you do any due diligence yourself.

You cant back out after you have bought it, you only now have a legal recourse, that you first will mediate and then arbitrate as called out on the CAR contract that you signed. If you did not, then you are looking at a $300/hour in attorney fees. Sadly, it looks like you thought you were getting a good deal going with the listing agent but now are living in a lemon.

The CAR contract is an As Is contract, with right to Property inspections as well as Viewing inspections called out.

It will be interesting to know why you would buy from a listing agent, what were the perks if any?

Also be careful as you put this question on boards, attorney will search this data base and postings.
All prior postings and questions will also show up.

All you can do is go over the contract that you signed thoroughly, then talk to 2-3 very good RE Attorneys,
then decide who you can work with.

If you did not do any inspections as required and agreed to in the CAR contract then you case dims
and is quite slim. Who buys homes in California without inspections? If inspections were done and you did not read them, then that is grim. Is there an Agent Visual? Is there a walk through inspection by you?

Something is not right here, Gbatjr. Sorry for your loss.

Good luck.
Web Reference: http://www.ruthandperry.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 16, 2010
Did she disclose to you that she was representing both parties? Did you sign "as is" - you should have had a viewing plus a final walk through - if the walk through is not ok - they need to remediate. So, did you close on this or NOT? If you did not close - and it does not meet standards (this is why we get an appraisal/assessment) you can ask them to fix or walk away. UNLESS you agreed to as is.... Then you loose your deposit. Unless you closed.... Then... well.... you could have some other legal rememdies.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 16, 2010
Dear Gbatjr,

If I were you I would also be concerned. You should have had proper representation with your own buyer agent. Dual Agency is legal in California, but must be disclosed to the client and it also must be with your consent. The rest of the issues should have been uncovered during inspection (did you have one?). Unfortunately you might have to speak to a lawyer at this this point, which is expensive and time consuming.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 16, 2010
Unfortunately the deal is closed and you're now the owner with no way of backing out. What you can do at this point: You can speak with a real estate attorney about the points you listed above to see if you have a case against the agent in question. I understand you were represented by a dual agent, but did you have a property inspection done? Did the agent disclose everything he or she was supposed to? Have you spoken to the agent since then about your concerns?

Either way, contact a real estate attorney, discuss the situation, and see if you have any recourse in this case.

Best of luck, Caroline
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
Sounds like you need to call an attorney, my friend. Did you have an inspection done?

Leonid Vekslin, your Las Vegas Realtor.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 13, 2010
Hi Gbatjr, so has escrow closed yet, meaning, did you or your bank send your money to escrow? It seems impossible that you were unable to back out on your inspection contingency. If you haven't closed yet, you might lose your deposit, but you can still back out. Just tell them you won't close. They can threaten to sue you all they want but they can't force you to buy anything.

If, on the other hand, you have already paid the full amount, have keys in your hand, and are having buyer's remorse, you are definitely in attorney land.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 13, 2010
I'm wondering, did you ever see this property before you purchased it?

Look, Gbatjr, there is no "backout." If the sale is closed, the sellers have your money, they're not going to give it back to you and take the deed back. That is absolutely not going to happen.

But you need an attorney to help you determine if you do have any recourse, and as Scott points out, it doesn't really look good for you.

From what I've heard, the courts have a very sympathetic ear to clients who have been misled and lied to, but they also need to show that there were some obstructions to finding out the truth. It's not against the law for an agent to be a dual agent, and you may very well have been subjected to lawsuits if you didn't close. A judge may wonder why you bought the property if you couldn't look at it, and might see a "gutted linen closet" and "illegally installed lighting" as maybe not so major problems?

However, there are legally mandated disclosures, and if the Seller represented that there weren't any defects with the flooring, for example, you might be able to win a lawsuit (I'm curious - is the floor slanted, or is it just that the concrete board or underlayment has buckled?).

I do not envy your situation. Frankly, it sounds like a ringing endorsement for homebuyers to have their own representation, and to choose a buyer's agent carefully.

Please report back,
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 11, 2010
Your best source of advice regarding your situation is an attorney who specializes in real estate--consider a consultation sooner rather than later--see exactly what options you may have and go from there.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 11, 2010
Hello Gbatjr,

As a Realtor, I'm unable to give you legal advice. That is what you're in need of. I highly recommend that you speak with a Licensed Real Estate Attorney regarding this matter. Make sure that you bring all contracts (documentation) from the purchase of the home. This includes all Seller disclosures. An Attorney will be able to advise you from this point on. Good luck!

0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 11, 2010
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