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muck

Legal issue w/ the sale of my home

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I take it you didn't have a realty lawyer?

The agents boss is just another realtor, probably, so if I were you I'd be shopping for a realty lawyer...NOW!

Why do you need a lawyer when you have an agent?

 

:ducks:

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I find it extremely hard to believe I could legally order work done on a house I do not own. Surely there was some trespass of some sort in this.

 

Why not bring up an bulldozer and "shake test" the house to dermine if it is structurally sound?

 

And yes, snaking a pipe can result in a collapsed drain, if not done correctly. There is no way to detrmine if the damage was there before or after the act of snaking the drain.

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The plumber came over and tried to inspect it. He said it was clogged and would need to be 'cleaned out' before he could finish his inspection. The buyer and their agent made a decision on the spot (without consulting me) that they would pay the extra couple hundred dollars to have it cleaned.

 

The buyer is the one that paid for the inspection , the buyer ( or most likely the inspector) would be responsible if you had a problem due to them doing the extra inspection that required the cleaning. A realtor should be present at the inspections so they know what they are talking about when they have to possibly do negotiations . They are not responsible for what happens at the inspection. The person paying for the inspection (the buyer) made the decision to do this without your consent. I assume they figured it would not harm anything and they may or may not be correct. Your agent is talking about 300 dollars escrow but the 300 dollar cleaning was just so they could do a more accurate inspection to possibly find a bigger problem. It wasnt a solution to a problem if I am reading the story correctly. The buyers agent could have said not to do anything until they ran it by you first but I am not sure that makes them liable.(I am curious to hear what your lawyer says) To a much lesser financial extent what they were doing was ripping up the corner of the carpet a little bit to see why the floor was creaking..Doing so without your consent is not acceptable but I am not sure if you can push off all financial or a majority of the financial liability because of that if you had a legit hidden potential problem that was not caused by them.

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Why do you need a lawyer when you have an agent?

 

:ducks:

 

 

You should always have a lawyer when a 6 figure purchase is involved. It wouldnt be wise not to..Muck has a lawyer he is just waiting for a call back.

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I find it extremely hard to believe I could legally order work done on a house I do not own. Surely there was some trespass of some sort in this.

 

probably, but from a legal perspective, what are the damages? if the problem is an old, corroded pipe, there is simply no way they are legally liable for fixing it.

 

And yes, snaking a pipe can result in a collapsed drain, if not done correctly. There is no way to detrmine if the damage was there before or after the act of snaking the drain.

 

well, their camera got stuck at the same location, so obviously there's pretty strong evidence there was some blockage there before the rooter guy went in. in any case, i'm pretty certain that the only way a snake could collapse a pipe is if the structure of the pipe was badly compromised (and in need of replacement) in the first place. like maybe it could cause a ticking time bomb to go off, so to speak. i seriously doubt there is any way it can blow a hole in a perfectly good pipe, and if you want me to believe otherwise i'll need a link.

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Agent says that while the house is under contract and during the inspection period they can (pretty much) do whatever they want to to the house to make sure they want to buy it ... BUT ... whatever damage they do to the house, they have to pay for the repair.

 

So, how can we prove their damage (if any)? Probably can't.

 

I'll call my attorney shortly to see if he has any ideas.

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Agent says that while the house is under contract and during the inspection period they can (pretty much) do whatever they want to to the house to make sure they want to buy it ... BUT ... whatever damage they do to the house, they have to pay for the repair.

 

So, how can we prove their damage (if any)? Probably can't.

 

I'll call my attorney shortly to see if he has any ideas.

 

 

propose a split of the costs. i still think your agent shouldve been there!!

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propose a split of the costs. i still think your agent shouldve been there!!

 

 

I agree..

 

Good luck Muck..I hate when stuff like this comes up..We had it when I bought my house. We did an extra inspection and found an old oil tank in the yard that was no longer in use..It cost the seller 11Gs to remove it. They were pissed ..

Edited by whomper

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When a doctor scopes a knee to determine the extent of the damage to the knee ... is he responsible for the damage he finds? Or better yet if I am having surgery to repair a torn muscle and the doctor discovers cancer while he's there he is responsible for the cancer?

 

Now I know you are going to say I consented to both procedures and I hear what you are saying ... and certainly nothing should have been done without your approval ... but it sounds to me like existing damage was revealed. Now I'm not a plumber or anything so my opinion is strictly that ... my opinion.

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When a doctor scopes a knee to determine the extent of the damage to the knee ... is he responsible for the damage he finds? Or better yet if I am having surgery to repair a torn muscle and the doctor discovers cancer while he's there he is responsible for the cancer?

 

Now I know you are going to say I consented to both procedures and I hear what you are saying ... and certainly nothing should have been done without your approval ... but it sounds to me like existing damage was revealed. Now I'm not a plumber or anything so my opinion is strictly that ... my opinion.

 

Yes, but did you personally know the sewer pipe in question?

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So, how can we prove their damage (if any)? Probably can't.

 

well, if you really feel that they caused the damage, you could go ahead and perform the repair before closing and inspect the removed pipe. if it's a clean hole and looks recent, maybe you can somehow tie it to them. but, a thousand times more likely, they'd pull out a section of pipe that looks like the section they pulled out of my basement a couple weeks ago, with a series of holes caused by age and rust.

 

i understand your frustration, muck, and i am sure i would feel the same way, having something you didn't know was a problem exposed and costing you a pretty penny. it sucks. but looking at it dispassionately, i think you're blurring the line between them causing your headache by discovering a problem on your property, and them causing the problem on your property. it's pretty clear to me that what they did is the former. i don't really think you have any options other than just sucking it up and paying for the repair, or at least a bulk of it.

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When a doctor scopes a knee to determine the extent of the damage to the knee ... is he responsible for the damage he finds? Or better yet if I am having surgery to repair a torn muscle and the doctor discovers cancer while he's there he is responsible for the cancer?

 

Now I know you are going to say I consented to both procedures and I hear what you are saying ... and certainly nothing should have been done without your approval ... but it sounds to me like existing damage was revealed. Now I'm not a plumber or anything so my opinion is strictly that ... my opinion.

 

 

a colonoscopy wouldve been a better analogy with the sewer problems and all........ :D

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So, the best solution (for everyone) is to probably have everyone wear a portion of the cost and be done with it.

 

Yep and in a sense, you'll be getting off easier. You know there truly is a problem, and it needs to be fixed.

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If you want to sell the house

 

1. Bring in at least 2 more people (licensed) to look at the problem and have them but in bids, then take the lowest

2. Submit the bid you are willing to pay for, and arrange it with all parties so you can write a check and put it in esrow so the new owners at closing can cash the check and pay for the repairs

3. Consider it a hard lesson learned. Make sure you or your agent is present the next time to safeguard your interests

4. If your agent wasn't present, never use that person again

 

If you don't want to sell it, if you can wait for another buyer, tell them they can take it as is or leave. Then either make the repairs, or do the escrow thing. Either way, now that it is know you will have to disclose it to the next buyer.

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i understand your frustration, muck, and i am sure i would feel the same way, having something you didn't know was a problem exposed and costing you a pretty penny. it sucks. but looking at it dispassionately, i think you're blurring the line between them causing your headache by discovering a problem on your property, and them causing the problem on your property. it's pretty clear to me that what they did is the former. i don't really think you have any options other than just sucking it up and paying for the repair, or at least a bulk of it.

I'm with Az here.

 

If I were the buyers, I'd be somewhat put off with the idea that you were blaming me for the problem and subsequently wanting me to share the cost of getting it fixed.

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I'm with Az here.

 

If I were the buyers, I'd be somewhat put off with the idea that you were blaming me for the problem and subsequently wanting me to share the cost of getting it fixed.

 

Yup and like I said, he'd be getting off easy if he doesn't have to foot the entire bill. I understand where he's coming from, but then again the likelihood they caused the problem is very minimal and would be very difficult to prove. If they had done all this so far, and there wass no problems at all and you found out that they had done this I seriously doubt you'd be very upset about it, you're upset and looking for a loophole to not have to fit the entire bill. Can't say I wouldn't try and do the same, may not be the best thing to do, but I can't say I wouldn't either.

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Buyers are requiring us to pay for the whole thing or else they're going to walk.

 

I'm hoping, at this point, that they'll let me fix the pipe and they'll take the chimney ($2k to fix; honestly, it doesn't need the fix they're claiming...but, I digress) ... and the cost to fix the pipe is at the low-end of the range ($2500).

 

This whole thing blows.

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Would it be that bad to let them walk? Fix what needs to be fixed and bump up the asking price?

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If you want to sell the house

 

1. Bring in at least 2 more people (licensed) to look at the problem and have them but in bids, then take the lowest

2. Submit the bid you are willing to pay for, and arrange it with all parties so you can write a check and put it in esrow so the new owners at closing can cash the check and pay for the repairs

3. Consider it a hard lesson learned. Make sure you or your agent is present the next time to safeguard your interests

4. If your agent wasn't present, never use that person again

 

If you don't want to sell it, if you can wait for another buyer, tell them they can take it as is or leave. Then either make the repairs, or do the escrow thing. Either way, now that it is know you will have to disclose it to the next buyer.

 

 

If this is the route you go be careful. When an issue involves something underground you never know what they might find when the get there..I regards to my oil tank that I mentioned above they wanted to be sure the ground surrounding it was not contaminated.

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Buyers are requiring us to pay for the whole thing or else they're going to walk.

 

I'm hoping, at this point, that they'll let me fix the pipe and they'll take the chimney ($2k to fix; honestly, it doesn't need the fix they're claiming...but, I digress) ... and the cost to fix the pipe is at the low-end of the range ($2500).

 

This whole thing blows.

 

Why not see if you can just knock say 3 or 4 k off the sell price and let them deal with the repairs. Prevents you any additional heartache/expense should anything additional go wrong once the repairs start, etc. Be sure to get a release of laibility or whatever is needed stating that they are aware of the problem, and have accepted the home as is with no additional liability for repairs on your part. You could also add some good will in there by offering to pay for a home warranty for one year (usually they cost under a grand... at least the one on our home did). The net cost to you is about the same and you can rid yourself of any obligations towards the repairs.

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Would it be that bad to let them walk? Fix what needs to be fixed and bump up the asking price?

 

 

In the long run if he did that and it took 3 months to fix and find a new buyer its probably just easier and more cost effective to take this on the chin and sell it to the buyer in hand.

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In the long run if he did that and it took 3 months to fix and find a new buyer its probably just easier and more cost effective to take this on the chin and sell it to the buyer in hand.

 

Maybe. Or he could use it as a very reasonable way to up his asking price. It doesn't sound like he's going to be getting any help from the current buyer, so maybe he can get a better deal by waiting.

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Why not see if you can just knock say 3 or 4 k off the sell price and let them deal with the repairs. Prevents you any additional heartache/expense should anything additional go wrong once the repairs start, etc. Be sure to get a release of laibility or whatever is needed stating that they are aware of the problem, and have accepted the home as is with no additional liability for repairs on your part. You could also add some good will in there by offering to pay for a home warranty for one year (usually they cost under a grand... at least the one on our home did). The net cost to you is about the same and you can rid yourself of any obligations towards the repairs.

 

 

The buyer would be foolish to accept this for the bolded reason..The lawyer may be able to write something in that you keep the high estimate in escrow and when the repair is done the funds are drawn and you keep the rest. If you want the transaction to move quickly this is a possible option I assume.

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Why not see if you can just knock say 3 or 4 k off the sell price and let them deal with the repairs.

 

that's what i'm thinking. that would probably be appealing to them, because it sounds as if the drain is working ok for now, maybe they put off the costly repair for a bit. you can work the contract so that the "purchase price" is the same as it was before (so they don't just get loaned 3k less), and the 3K is an "allowance" which they basically receive as a cash payment at closing. they would probably bite off on that.

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