What to do if I just bought a house and was falsely informed that it was in good shape and only needed minor repairs?

UPDATED: Nov 19, 2012

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What to do if I just bought a house and was falsely informed that it was in good shape and only needed minor repairs?

Such as paint and floor covering. After the purchase, I found out the roof leaks and needs a new one, the siding on the outside of the home is rotted and needs replaced in many places. Also, I was told that the central unit worked, in fact it does not. Can I sue the seller for the repairs I am having to make?

Asked on November 19, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Mississippi


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You may be able to sue the seller: if he or she were aware of material (significant) problems and failed to disclose them, that constitutes a form of fraud. However, the seller's knowledge is critical--there is no liability without knowledge and a knowing or intentional failure to disclose. So, for example, if the seller were aware of the roof and the central unit, you may be able to recover compensation for them; but if the seller had no idea that the siding was rotting (e.g. it wasn't readily visible), he or she would not be liable for that.

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