How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask J. Warren Your Own Question
J. Warren
J. Warren, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 2241
Experience:  Experience in residential real estate and commercial leases.
64316804
Type Your Real Estate Law Question Here...
J. Warren is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I recently bought a small home in the Monterey area. There

Customer Question

I recently bought a small home in the Monterey area. There was noticeable irregularity in the levelness of the flooring. Prior to purchase, the home inspection mentioned the floor irregularity, but in a rather cursory way.
The only thing called out as a section 1 item to address was the beetle and termite infestation of the decking.
I have now demo'd out one of the decks and have gone under the house to take a closer look regarding the settling and irregularity of the flooring. The foundation consists of a perimeter concrete foundation with pier posts on pier blocks throughout the body of the house. I noticed that there are a handful of posts that are loose or not even making contact, a couple with a 2-3 inch space between the bottom of the pier and the block.
Additionally, a contractor friend pointed out that the house was originally built (40 years ago) on soil that has dramatically settled. He mentioned that today there would probably have to be caisons installed prior to building the house. We found that there is about a 5 inch difference in height from the front of the house to the back of the house.
My questions is: Do I have any legal recourse with the home inspector in mitigating the foundation deficiencies since, other than mentioning that there were irregularities in the flooring, there was no mention about any deficiencies in the foundation.
Thank you,
Andre ***@******.*** (###) ###-####
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  J. Warren replied 10 months ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I am an attorney who will try my very best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can. There may be a slight delay in my responses as I research statutes or ordinances and type out an answer or reply, but rest assured, I am working on your question.

Expert:  J. Warren replied 10 months ago.

I am sorry you are dealing with this situation. Potentially, yes a home inspector may be sued. However, the contract between the buyer and home inspector may have a liquidated damage clause which would limit their liability.

Your situation is very fact based, meaning an argument can be made from both sides and will likely require formal procedures be initiate to determine the strength of your case and whether some form of settlement can be reached without the lengthy process of a trial.

Unfortunately, the only way to access the strength of your case or to pursue against the home inspector is to retain a local attorney. The first hurdle will likely be the contract itself and any limits is sets on damages and liability of the inspector. The next hurdle will be arguing when the actual damage was discovered (that is when did the statute of limitations begin to run).

In short, yes you potentially have recourse against a home inspector and I would strongly suggest you interview some local lawyers to retain and pursue this matter.

All my best and encouragement. Thank you for allowing me to help you with your questions. I have done my best to provide information which truthfully addresses your question. Please note: If I tell you simply what you wish to hear, this would be unfair to you. I need to be honest with you and sometimes this means providing information that is not optimal. Negative ratings are reserved for experts who are rude or for erroneous information. Please rate me on the quality of my information; do not punish me for my honesty. Kindly rate my answer as one of TOP THREE FACES/STARS and then SUBMIT, as this is how experts get credit for our time.

Expert:  J. Warren replied 10 months ago.

Here is a link recent case you may find helpful: https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=2365824034938771012&q=home+inspector&hl=en&as_sdt=4,5

Expert:  J. Warren replied 10 months ago.

Can I answer any additional follow up questions for you or clarify anything I have written above? If not, can you please press a positive rating above this message box in the ratings section so I will be paid for my time assisting you on this matter? Pressing a positive rating will not cost any additional money - it is simply the trigger used by Just Answer to pay me for my time (pressing the middle star or the fourth or fifth star on the right are all positive rating buttons).

Related Real Estate Law Questions