Real Estate Law

Have Real Estate Law Questions? Ask a Real Estate Lawyer.

Ask a Lawyer,
Get an Answer ASAP!

Real Estate Law
This answer was rated:

My husband and I just bought a house thats a new construction.

My husband and I just...
My husband and I just bought a house that's a new construction. (It was on the market; we didn't contract for it to be built.) On closing day, we did the final walk-through with the builder and our realtor. The builder had re-sodded the backyard because it had previously be messed up by standing water. He explained to us that he had dug a trench and re-routed the water, but if that didn't work to call him, let him, and he had other things he could try.

Fast forward 10 days to when we moved in. The backyard in that same area was a soggy mess. The trench was an active stream, and has gotten wider. Behind our fence is additional wooded land that is ours. Today, I went back there to see where all the water was coming from. There are two staked-off area where the builder put up sheets and gravel, trying to stop the water. I followed the water upstream...and found a culvert, mostly hidden by moss, disposed-of sod, and large rocks. Dumping water down into our backyard. It was not disclosed to us in any way at all that this was there.

Now, we're in the situation of likely not being able to impede the flow of the water because the city owns this (the only easement we were told of was a sewer easement just behind our property line, which we're fine with). Also, it will cost THOUSANDS of dollars for a drainage specialist to fix this. We've emailed the builder multiple times, but he has not responded.

I know that we have an implied warranty in my state (NC). However, what other options do we have? We NEVER would have bought this house had we been presented, fairly, with all the information. I'm not even able to let my children play in the backyard because it's so wet. This was supposed to be our dream house, and I hate it.
Show More
Show Less
Ask Your Own Real Estate Law Question
Answered in 12 minutes by:
6/17/2013
CalAttorney2
CalAttorney2, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 10,244
Experience: I am a civil litigation attorney with experience representing HOAs, homeowners, businesses and others in real estate matters.
Verified

CalAttorney2 :

Dear Customer, thank you for choosing Just Answer. I would like to assist you with your legal question today.

CalAttorney2 :

The situation you describe is one of misrepresentation (either intentional - fraud - or unintentional - meaning the builder should have reasonably known about the condition). The fact that the condition was covered over during your walk through leads to a reasonable conclusion that there was an active effort to conceal this matter at the time of your purchase. I cannot evaluate the strength of your evidence through this website, but I can provide you with the elements necessary to prove a case for fraud (and the associated punitive damages).

CalAttorney2 :

To prove fraud, you must show the following (1) the defendant made a false statement (or concealed a material fact); (2) intending the plaintiff to rely on it; (3) the plaintiff relies on the statement or concealment; and (4) the defendant suffers damages.

CalAttorney2 :

I am sorry to learn of this damage to your home, and the significant cost to repair what should have been a turn-key residence. Unfortunately, unless the builder will make this matter right, you will have to go to some form of dispute resolution. I can offer that you try mediation through something like the Better Business Bureau, or a private mediator with both the realtor and the contractor prior to filing a lawsuit.

Customer:

We're really hoping our realtor will help us. He's also a builder, so we're wondering why none of this raised red flags for him...or even if he knew about it.

Customer:

But we want to avoid a lawsuit, if possible. We just want the builder to fix it.

CalAttorney2
CalAttorney2, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 10,244
Experience: I am a civil litigation attorney with experience representing HOAs, homeowners, businesses and others in real estate matters.
Verified
CalAttorney2 and 87 other Real Estate Law Specialists are ready to help you
Ask your own question now
Ask CalAttorney2 Your Own Question
CalAttorney2
CalAttorney2
CalAttorney2, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 10,244
10,244 Satisfied Customers
Experience: I am a civil litigation attorney with experience representing HOAs, homeowners, businesses and others in real estate matters.

CalAttorney2 is online now

A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How JustAnswer works:

  • Ask an ExpertExperts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional AnswerVia email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction GuaranteeRate the answer you receive.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises!

Gary B.Edmond, OK

My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer.

EricRedwood City, CA

I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight.

MichaelWichita, KS

PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent.

Three H.Houston, TX

Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!!

ElaineAtlanta, GA

It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem.

TonyApopka, FL

Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help.

Mary C.Freshfield, Liverpool, UK

< Previous | Next >

Meet the Experts:

Tina

Tina

Lawyer

5,436 satisfied customers

17 years of legal experience including real estate law.

Barrister

Barrister

Lawyer

11,126 satisfied customers

17 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years

Infolawyer

Infolawyer

Lawyer

7,785 satisfied customers

Experienced lawyer

Ray

Ray

Lawyer

7,559 satisfied customers

Texas Attorney for 30 years dealing in real estate

LawTalk

LawTalk

Attorney

6,207 satisfied customers

I have 30 years legal experience. Additionally, in CA I held a Real Estate Broker's license.

Dimitry Esquire

Dimitry Esquire

Attorney

5,526 satisfied customers

JA Mentor, multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation & admin

Ely

Ely

Counselor at Law

4,925 satisfied customers

Qualified attorney in private practice including business, family, criminal, and real estate issues.

< Previous | Next >

Related Real Estate Law Questions
My neighbor has a 14 inch easement along the my east
My neighbor has a 14 inch easement along the my east property line.His driveway was mistakenly poured over the property line during construction so the developer solved the problem by granting this ea… read more
LegalGems
LegalGems
Juris Doctorate
10,698 satisfied customers
Can a walking easement of 20' that shows on a plat map with
Can a walking easement of 20' that shows on a plat map with definitive width, length and surveyor pins be considered a "floating" or "blanket" easement if it was not recorded as such initially? … read more
Barrister
Barrister
Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
11,126 satisfied customers
The city is putting a drainage easement and coming into my
The city is putting a drainage easement and coming into my backyard 20 feet. In the process they are removing trees and a 2 story playhouse. There is also a shed and sprinkler system and river stone r… read more
Attyadvisor
Attyadvisor
Doctoral Degree
7,157 satisfied customers
MUST AN EASEMENT CONTAIN LANGUAGE THAT ALLOWS IT TO BE MOVED
MUST AN EASEMENT CONTAIN LANGUAGE THAT ALLOWS IT TO BE MOVED BY THE LAND OWNER WHOSE PROPERTY THE EASEMENT IS OVER, IN AN INGRESS AND EGRESS EASEMENT? IS IT USUAL FOR AN EASEMENT TO CONTAIN SUCH LANGU… read more
lucy7368
lucy7368
Juris Doctor
763 satisfied customers
Time is of the essence" in a construction contract. what
quot;time is of the essence" in a construction contract. what damages can i collect if my only direct consequential loss was inconvenience? I was scheduled to relocate to my winter home Nov1; contract… read more
Asad Rahman
Asad Rahman
Attorney
J.D.
2,289 satisfied customers
I had work done to my home and the contractor damaged the
i had work done to my home and the contractor damaged the ceiling after it being totally reworked. they have not scheduled repair or have they acknowledged the damaged. I have been seeking a timely cl… read more
LegalGems
LegalGems
Juris Doctorate
10,698 satisfied customers
I am building a house and almost done. It is a construction
I am building a house and almost done. It is a construction loan. Our builder has an amazing reputation and waiting list . He has been in the business 30 years. We just noticed he did not put a warran… read more
Barrister
Barrister
Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
11,126 satisfied customers
A building contractor did water damaged work on my apartment
a building contractor did water damaged work on my apartment and i signed a contract with him and after the work was done he changed the dollar amount to a higher amount. the contract stated not to ex… read more
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
7,340 satisfied customers
Here is my problem I had a drainage in front of kitchen with
Hi Here is my problem I had a drainage in front of kitchen with water standing. I fill out a action report along with a bit and the landscaper said he could do it in a weeks time. So I schedule a day … read more
PaulmoJD
PaulmoJD
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
106 satisfied customers
I gave an easement for a large water line. Plans called for
I gave an easement for a large water line. Plans called for hydrant as did code engineer designed under. During construction issues developed about hydrant being outside of easement. Only after great … read more
PaulmoJD
PaulmoJD
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
106 satisfied customers
We have a shared easement in CA. The neighbor had water main
We have a shared easement in CA. The neighbor had water main work done on his line and the company damaged not only our water main line but, the asphalt alongside the trench they dug for the replaceme… read more
Attyadvisor
Attyadvisor
Doctoral Degree
7,157 satisfied customers
There is an easement on my property (major water pipe). Is
There is an easement on my property (major water pipe). Is there anything I can do to have it relocated? It's on the only tiny bit of flat land we have where we want to create a play structure for our… read more
Barrister
Barrister
Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
11,126 satisfied customers
We have a deeded easement to get to our woods property with
We have a deeded easement to get to our woods property with no other access. The farmer (landowner) cut a ditch across the road and has made it impassable and is diverting water across the easement. W… read more
Barrister
Barrister
Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
11,126 satisfied customers
We have damage in a bedroom caused from an outside drainage
We have damage in a bedroom caused from an outside drainage issue. Our insurname company covers damages from the walls in but not so if caused feom an outside drainage issue. Our HOA Board says we are… read more
Barrister
Barrister
Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
11,126 satisfied customers
Is there a required minimum gradient for drainage pathway
Is there a required minimum gradient for drainage pathway around slab foundation on a private dwelling? … read more
Attyadvisor
Attyadvisor
Doctoral Degree
7,157 satisfied customers
There was a drainage problem with the air conditioner, and
There was a drainage problem with the air conditioner, and now some very rare records of mine that I inherited are ruined. I do not have renters insurance, but am asking if the landlord is liable for … read more
Ely
Ely
Counselor at Law
Juris Doctor
4,925 satisfied customers
There is a 20 ft. drainage easement between my property and
Good evening. There is a 20 ft. drainage easement between my property and the neighbor behind me. He has built a wire fence on the easement denying me access to my main water valve. Is this legal? … read more
Barrister
Barrister
Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
11,126 satisfied customers
I have an easement for the minimum necessary to construct an
I have an easement for the minimum necessary to construct an 18' roadway and utilities. The servient owner has a locked gate (about a 20' gate) across the easement. The easement is for ingress/egress.… read more
Irwin Law
Irwin Law
Juris Doctor JD
7,089 satisfied customers

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

Show MoreShow Less

Ask Your Question

x