Home Buying in 56003>Question Details

Ajwjlwagw, Home Buyer in 56003

Undisclosed water damage in our basement is surfacing! Can we get out of the sale, even though we closed a month ago??

Asked by Ajwjlwagw, 56003 Mon Apr 25, 2011

We closed on a home about a month ago. On the disclosure statement, the seller listed no previous water damage, leakage or seepage. Two weeks after moving in....we have water in our basement. We pulled up the carpet and cut down the drywall and have found old water stains on the carpet, mold growing on the wood in the walls....obvious evidence that there has been previous water evidence. One of our neighbors also told us that they helped the owners before the ones we bought the house from, pump water out of their basement EVERY year. We are trying to get ahold of the disclosure statement that the people who sold us the house would have gotten when they bought it...just to see if maybe it was never disclosed to them. Is that even public property and where could I get ahold of old disclosure statements? Having no luck so far!! Also, is there anyway to get out of the purchase of this home! I am so mad...I do not even want to live in this house anymore :(

Help the community by answering this question:


The hard thing here is there are so many variables. Did you purchase the property as a foreclosure or a short sale? If you did you most likely signed an "As Is Agreement" in which case you are out of luck unless you can prove they lied about a disclosure. Proving someone knew about an issue is especially difficult. (especially when its a bank)

Did you use a Realtor on the purchase? Did you sing an arbitration agreement? Did you get the property inspected? If so does the inspection company warranty any issues like this? My understanding is that you cant "un-purchase" the home but if you think the issue is serious you should consult legal counsel.

Brooks Johnson
Wallin Residential Properties
Web Reference: http://www.mspagents.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 25, 2011
I can't believe that they tried to trick you like that! I also had a house with water damage problems. We were always pumping water out of the basement. I should have just water proofed the thing in the first place but I never got around to it. I hope you get out of it. http://www.fdrestoration.com/
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 17, 2014
While I don't agree with the tactic, it certainly doesn't surprise me that the sellers resorted to trickery. Water damage is a serious problem, but it is not a complete disaster. There is no shortage of restoration companies that can easily handle this job. From your description, it sounds like you just have a little mold and rot. This can all be fixed within a couple weeks.

Flag Mon Jan 26, 2015
Yes, you are in a mess. Was this purchase an "as is" purchase? If so you have little recourse. If this is a regular sale did your inspector use a moisture meter during the inspection. This should have revealed water issues.

You need to speak with an experienced real estate attorney. Underline experienced. I can provide referrals for you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 26, 2011
Sorry to read that you are having some spring water issues. Unfortunately you can't get out of a sale that has already transpired; there are no lemon laws or right of rescission that I am aware of. If you financed the bank has a loan against the property and you have a mortgage obligation.

Few things to consider; if the seller to you didn't have the water issue, it wasn't disclosed to them when they purchased and the neighbor didn't share this information with them it’s possible the seller to you didn't know. It happens and it's an inherent risk of purchasing a home. Which goes back to inspections, disclosure, due diligence by all parties.

Things to do: 1 - if previous sellers sold with a realty company contact them to determine if they company has the disclosures from the sellers before your seller. This may give added information.
2 - Determine if the sellers you purchased from received assistance from the neighbor to "deal" with the water issue and or if it was disclosed by the helpful neighbor to them that the prior owner had water issues. If so you would have possible grounds to pursue the option of mediation or court to determine cost to remediate and cure based on lack of disclosure.
3-Have and Inspector that is educated in water intrusion; is there evidence that the seller that sold to you couldn't have not known? Its another possibility -
My understand is you have to prove that the seller was aware of the issue -

This is not legal advice for that you would contact an attorney -
Best of Luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 25, 2011
your English and lack of punctuation is atrocious. your advice should never be considered!
Flag Thu Sep 10, 2015
Chances are you are stuck with the house but may have a lawsuit for misrepresentation. I'm not an attorney, so you'll have to discuss this with one to be certain, but you may have a case. If the owners before the one you bought the home from disclosed to them, then a case could be made that they had knowledge. If the problem never reoccurred in their ownership, they may claim they forgot about the previous disclosure and considered the problem resolved.
In either case, it sounds like you'll be spending time in court to get a resolution.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 25, 2011

Did you have an agent represent you when you purchased the property? Was the property listed by a brokerage?

Molly Robertson
Bridge Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 25, 2011
Your best bet is to speak with a lawyer and go from there. Who knows, maybe the basement never leaked while the owners lived there. The Seller's Disclosure only discloses what the then current owners experienced, not what previous owner's experienced, so I don't know how the disclosure from two onwers ago would help you. As for getting out of the sale that is already closed, that is a question best suited for a lawyer. Good luck!

Jennifer Kirby- Broker
Kirby Fine Homes
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 25, 2011
Search Advice
Ask our community a question
Email me when…

Learn more

Copyright © 2016 Trulia, Inc. All rights reserved.   |  
Have a question? Visit our Help Center to find the answer