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My granddaughter bought a house less than 8 months ago. This…

Customer Question
My granddaughter bought a...

My granddaughter bought a house less than 8 months ago. This spring the whole basement filled with water. Insurance company was notified and contractors were called in to start the repairs. Contractors notified my granddaughter that previous owners were aware of disintegrating basement foundation. They took pictures of the foundation and of where the previous owners put silicone to cover up the cracks. My question is who is responsible for the damage?

Lawyer's Assistant: What steps have been taken so far? Has any paperwork been prepared or filed?

Realestate agent was contacted but refuses to return calls

Lawyer's Assistant: Where is the house located?

Iroquois Falls

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

Mostly it is a question of who will be responsible for the cost of all the damage as it has been suggested the the house be dug out and the whole foundation has to be repaired

Submitted: 2 months ago.Category: Legal
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5/30/2018
Lawyer: Richard, Attorney replied 2 months ago
Richard
Richard, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 57,213
Experience: Attorney with 29 years of experience.
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Lawyer: Richard, Attorney replied 2 months ago

Good afternoon. The seller is liable. The seller is obligated to disclose anything the seller knows or should have known that a reasonable buyer would consider material in making the decision whether or not to buy the property. What you describe clearly qualifies as a material matter that should have been disclosed and this was clearly something the seller knew or should have known. What your granddaughter needs to do is raise the stakes on the seller. She should send the seller a certified, return receipt requested letter detailing the situation and lack of disclosure and demand the seller compensate her to remediate the problem within a short specified period of time. She should inform the seller that if the seller does not timely comply with her demand, she will have no choice but to file a suit for her damages. BUT, she should be sure to specifically mention that if forced to file this suit, she will be filing this claim not only as a breach of contract case, but also as fraud and deceptive trade practice causes of action, which will entitle her not only to her damages, but also an additional amount equal to multiple times the actual damages as punitive damages. That should provide plenty of incentive to comply with her demands; but, if it does not, she should file suit. Even if she has to file the suit, that's likely all she will need do. In my experience, the seller will settle this to her satisfaction without a hearing rather than risk punitive damages and the fraud and/or deceptive trade practice judgments being on the record.

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