What recourse does a buyer have when they find a house they purchased has black mold in the walls?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What recourse does a buyer have when they find a house they purchased has black mold in the walls?

My daughter and her boyfriend just bought a new home. On the walk-through with the real estate agent they were

working with notified them that there had been water damage in the basement from a leak but the issue was

resolved. After signing, they found water standing in the basement. After further investigation they found mold inside multiple walls. It may take thousands of dollars to repair. They have no idea where the water is coming from. They are first time buyers and I feel they were mislead by the agent the seller the home was a repo and they were

never allowed to talk to the actual seller.

Asked on October 8, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Missouri


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Your daughter and her boyfriend can sue the seller and real estate agent for fraud.
Fraud is the intentional misrepresentation or nondisclosure of a material fact made with knowledge of its falsity and with the intent to induce your reliance upon which you justifiably relied to your detriment.
In other words, your daughter and her boyfriend would not have purchased the house had they known the water leak had not been resolved and /or knew of the mold.
Damages (monetary compensation) in a lawsuit for fraud would be either the benefit of the bargain or out of pocket loss.
Benefit of the bargain means a defrauded purchaser may recover the difference between the real and represented value of the property purchased regardless of the fact that the actual loss suffered might have been less.
Out of pocket determination of damages for fraudulent misrepresentation permits recovery of the difference between the price paid and the actual value of the property acquired.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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