Every home that has previously had tenants will have some wear and tear or mild deterioration. The carpet may show signs of heavy traffic or fading around windows with southern exposure. The appliances may not be as efficient and cutting-edge as they were when someone first bought the house.
Although it is normal to expect some issues and repairs when buying a property, you should have a realistic understanding of the property’s condition when you purchase it. The seller should disclose all known issues with the property in writing as required under Texas state law. If they fail to do so, you may be able to take them to court for defects that you discover in the property.
What are two signs that you may have a claim against a former owner for non-disclosed defects?
There are signs of a cosmetic cover-up
Sellers hoping to get as much money as possible when selling a home will try to make it look as nice as possible to entice buyers. Although there is nothing wrong with maximizing a property’s potential, it is never acceptable to plaster over cracks that are warning signs of foundation issues or otherwise make cosmetic repairs to major defects without warning the buyers of the underlying issue.
If you discover major problems with your home because cosmetic cover-ups start to fail, you may have evidence that the seller knew of the issue and actively hid it from you before the sale.
Local professionals have been to your house before
When your roof fails during a rainstorm, you may call the top-rated local company to get a quote for replacement. When they arrive, they tell you that they have been out to your house before, maybe a few years ago, and discussed the property with the previous owner because the roof needed replacing then.
When professionals or neighbors indicate that the former owner talked about, got quotes on or performed work on the part of the property that has since developed issues and when they did not disclose those issues to you prior to the sale, you may have grounds to bring a claim against them for failing to disclose a known defect.
Holding sellers accountable through real estate litigation can help reimburse those who overpaid for a property because of defects the seller tried to hide.