Is my home inspector liable for the cost of a new roof if he failed to uncover/disclose the actual condition of the existing roof?

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Is my home inspector liable for the cost of a new roof if he failed to uncover/disclose the actual condition of the existing roof?

I bought my house 2 years ago and the home inspector put in his report that the roof was between 1 and 5 years old with 1 layer of shingles. Come to find out, 2 years later, the roof is double layered with shingles, and has extensive water damage and will need to be completely replaced. Is he liable for any of this?

Asked on August 18, 2011 New Jersey

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

When buyers of real property are in contract to purchase, prudence as well as custom and practice is that they typically retain third party experts to inspect the home to discover hidden problems with it and these third party experts are paid for their services.

Typically expert reports are done for these inspections for the roof, pests and the like. If a third party expert misses somehting during an ispection that is a problem with the home and he or she fell below the standard of care of that particular trade during the inspection, he or she could be responsible for the costs of repair.

The rationale is that had the problem been discovered before close of escrow, the final sales price very well could have been adjusted for the problem or the buyer might not have even closed the sale.

Good luck.


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