Flooding in a finished basement, There was history and previous owner did not disclose. How much can this lower my home value (330,000)?

Asked by Gracebriante, 55068 Tue Nov 8, 2011

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Aaron Dickinson’s answer
Aaron Dickin…, Agent, Champlin, MN
Tue Nov 8, 2011
There is no specific answer because it is very case by case dependent. In many cases I've seen, the practical answer is whatever it takes to install waterproofing (drain tiling, rubber membranes, etc) and repair damaged finishes. Many houses have had water damage in the past... it is how you deal with it that makes the difference.
Web Reference:  http://www.aaronsold.com
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Gail Strom, Agent, Apple Valley, MN
Mon Jan 27, 2014
As concerning as any water intrusion can be, it doesn't necessarily mean that your property value has been reduced, IF the problem has been resolved. Potential home buyers don't like hearing about past issues but if you can show that the damages were repaired and actions were taken so that future water intrusion is unlikely you should be able to get market value. If you get to the point of selling and would like a more in depth analysis on market value please feel free to reach out to me.
Gail Strom
0 votes
Sally Leary, Agent, Lakeville, MN
Tue Apr 9, 2013
Buyers want disclosure and a solved problem. I would do all you can to be able to present the issue as one that has been addressed, that any residual issues are resolved and that you have not had water since...
0 votes
Cameron Piper, Agent, Forest Lake, MN
Tue Nov 8, 2011

The reality is that real estate is not a science. Aaron is correct that every situation is different and issues like these need to be handled on a case by case basis.

In practicality an argument can be made that little or no value was lost. You need to consider how buyer's typically buy homes to understand why. In a typical showing, property disclosures are rarely reviewed and almost without fail inspections aren't conducted until long after a buyer has fallen emotionally in love with a home. Most buyers are willing to look past many large defects as long as a couple of items fall in place - the issue is forthwritely disclosed, the problem was remedied, and the problem hasn't presisted.

In your case, if you fix the root cause of the problem, disclose the issue when you sell, and haven't had a problem since. It is likely the buyer will overlook the issues and assume that it has been resolved.

However, the question behind your question seems to be what can you go after the seller for. That is something your attorney will need to outline for you. To make your argument of devalution, have an appraiser come in, present the scenario to them, and ask them to present you with an appraisal assuming that the issues didn't exist and an appraisal now that you know that it does. The difference in the two will obviously be the amount of of devaluation. I had a client experience the same issue with a sewer backup and we had to hire an appraiser to conduct a similar appraisal for a lawsuit. Expect to pay a bit more for this more in depth appraisal. Good Luck!!

Cameron Piper
Coldwell Banker Burnet
licensed MN Broker
Web Reference:  http://www.CamPiper.com
0 votes
Ron Thomas, Agent, Fresno, CA
Tue Nov 8, 2011
Aaron answered your question, but,
when you are SELLING, your main concern is to DISCLOSE the problem to any Buyers.

Good luck and may God bless
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