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What if You Find Out a Seller Lied in the Disclosure?

 Posted on January 25, 2024 in Real Estate Law

TX real estate lawyerBuying a home is often the biggest purchase you will ever make. Before signing the contract, make sure to carefully review the seller’s disclosure notice. This legally binding form requires sellers to reveal defects or facts that could influence the value. But what happens if you later discover the seller lied on this important document? If this happens to you, a Texas real estate lawyer might help.

Seeking Legal Help

If a seller intentionally hides or misrepresents known defects, they are violating Texas law. This is considered fraud and can invalidate the purchase contract. As the buyer, you have legal rights to seek financial compensation or end the sale altogether. An attorney can review your case details and disclosure paperwork to build the strongest legal argument.

You may be able to successfully sue dishonest sellers in civil court. The judge could award monetary damages to cover repairs, value loss, legal fees, temporary housing, and other costs directly related to the seller’s deception. In especially egregious cases, you may even be granted a full purchase price refund or ownership rights to the defective property while the seller takes back the home.

Inspecting for Hidden Issues

Just because a seller lied on the disclosure does not automatically void the purchase contract. As the buyer, you must still prove that undisclosed defects exist and that you were not reasonably able to detect them on your own through careful inspections. There are some fundamental expectations a buyer should make:

  • Inspect or investigate to uncover issues prior to purchase
  • Review all available disclosure paperwork from sellers
  • Prove the seller was actively concealing known defects

Work closely with your real estate attorney to build a solid case that proves the seller’s active deception. Bring in documentation, multiple inspector statements, repair estimates, and any evidence that defects were covered up or would not have reasonably revealed themselves pre-purchase without destruction of property. The stronger your documentation, the more leverage you may gain.

What If Defects Are Uncovered Post-Purchase?

Home purchase contracts have varying but strict time limits for buyers discovering defects and taking legal action. If concealed issues surface post-purchase, immediately document the defects and relevant evidence. Make sure to promptly contact a lawyer as they will know how to strengthen arguments to prove active deception and maximize recoverable damages. They can also provide expert guidance on defective property rights and responsibilities, so owners minimize further expenses moving forward.

Contact a Stephenville, TX Real Estate Lawyer

While no buyer expects to experience lies and deception made by sellers, it does happen far more often than people realize. Protect yourself upfront with careful purchase contracts, inspections, and disclosures. But also know your legal options, rights, and optimal next steps if you do discover seller fraud post-home purchase. An understanding Willow Park, TX real estate attorney can make all the difference in recovering financially or even cancelling the purchase entirely. call Cain & Kiel Law at 817-645-1717 to get started.

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