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Ask Law Educator, Esq. Your Own Question
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 118189
Experience:  Licensed attorney practicing landlord-tenant, land use and other real estate law and litigation.
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We bought a piece of property that our realtor owned. He

Customer Question

We bought a piece of property that our realtor owned. He represented us as the buyer and himself as the seller. We have an unpermitted garage. He never disclosed that the garage was unpermitted and insinuated to us that it was. Can we go back and sue him to get the garage permitted and is there a statute of limitations. We just found out he could be accountable from another realtor. We bought the house a year and a half ago.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

Yes, if he failed to disclose the permitting then you have grounds to sue for the failure to disclose. There is a 4 year statute of limitations in CA for breach of contract and that is what this would fall under. It is 4 years from date of breach or from reasonable discovery of the breach. Your time is ticking though and you need to get a local real estate attorney quickly.

You can also file a complaint to the real estate board, because this would have been a mandatory disclosure.

You also need to file for a waiver with the zoning/building commission and present evidence it was there before you purchased and the expense of removal would create a undue significant hardship to remove it. You can get an appeal hearing if you are initially denied and if the board denies your appeal, you can take this to court because courts are very reluctant in these cases to make someone remove something so significant if you can prove it is up to code, because of the cost.