After all, if it's not a new home, it was her roof before it was yours. Now you discovered that you have a major issue with the house/lot that the seller never disclosed. Q: We recently purchased a home that has severe hail damage although we were unaware of it at the time of the closing. None of these sorts of issues provide any grounds upon which to run back to the seller to complain. It’s so important to have a property inspection before closing. It can be such a disappointment, finding issues after the purchase of your new single family home or condo. It would be very easy for a seller to argue that the damage was pre-existing, and if the buyer did not inspect, there is no way of proving otherwise. So you’ve found the perfect house, negotiated over the price, dealt with the bank, and finally closed. Do they have a case? There is typically a two month period between the time that a buyer signs a contract with a seller and the actual date of closing. Examples of Home Defects Discovered by Buyers After the Sale. Apparently, there was a big hail storm on the weekend between inspection and closing. If you need to start moving things in, perhaps you can offer the seller limited storage in the garage for a couple of days after closing. We recently sold our house in October 2014 and the buyers experienced a roof leak about a month after closing. The sellers have the cash and the house at that point. If you haven’t signed the final closing paperwork yet — don’t. Delay closing and withhold funds in escrow. What do you do? We think the buyers may try to sue us to replace their roof. Once you close, you lose leverage. Generally, when you purchase a home, you are on the hook for all future repairs. Refuse to continue with the closing until the repairs have been made to your satisfaction. A closing may fall through for many reasons, including title-insurance surprises, buyer financing rejections, inspection failures, … However, exceptions do apply. 3. Nothing is more disappointing than thinking your home sale is a done deal, only to have it crumble in the final stages of the process. There are a number of ways a buyer can protect himself or herself from serious defects, both before and after the closing. We replaced the roof right after moving in about 7 years ago. Then after the sale, your home probably continued its normal process of aging and decaying, leaving you to deal with the consequences. Most defects and problems that are found during this inspection period, are resolved between the buyer and seller before closing. If there was a huge crack running across the living room ceiling at the open house and you only decide to bring it up months after the closing, you are unlikely to have a successful case. After the inspection, if there are any problems, either negotiate a credit or require that the seller repair prior to closing. The defect was not obvious to visitors. Four days after the inspection, a hail storm hit Columbus, Ohio, and at the end of that month we closed on the house. What happens if the property is damaged during this period? But if the problem likely started before you bought the house, then you might have a chance at recovery. Do determine the liability, if any at all, of the seller for plumbing problem, for example, courts will look to the purchase agreement for the home, the nature of the problem, whether you had a home inspection, and any specific misrepresentations by the seller. Will your insurance company cover the damage? We did NOT have any issues with leaks prior to selling the home. Unfortunately, some are not. If so, there may be no need to take action on your own. 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