I closed on a house yesterday and last night I found a problem - elapsed time about 8 hours. The time frame is documented with photos and email.
The whole time the house had been for sale, the water had been off at the main valve, which resides exactly between some insulation and some sheetrock at a transition between finished and unfinished basement. The listing realtor turned on the water before coming to closing, so it had been on about 9 hours.
The valve was "welling up" with wetness at the transition from the stem to the valve proper. It wasn't a steady drip per se. I peeled back some insulation and that area of insulation was ruined along with the drywall which basically exploded when I touched it.
I DID HAVE the home inspected. My feeling, though, is that, the leak may be slow enough that it wasn't evident in say an hour. It wasn't on the seller's disclosure, either, though I'd think they'd have to have known. they painted the opposite side of the sheetrock. as bad a shape it was in, it would have had to have been showing when they painted it.
I contacted my realtor to ask if anyone would be heloning me with that (I estimate maybe $500), and he said no - all sales are final after closing.
Should I pursue this or let it go?
I know life isn't fair and all, but I feel like I did everything right to protect myself and got screwed.
Also - the sellers moved out of state and were not present at closing if that matters.
2 Answers from Attorneys
Depending on your contract with your home inspector, and I hope you had a good contract, you may be able to sue the inspector.
You likely have no grounds to sue the seller unless they existed in the sales paperwork or unless you could prove fraud in the disclosure.
As a practical matter, your legal bills would be way more than $500. Pursuing the home inspector is likely the route that may help.
Another vote for letting it go and just getting a plumber and moving on. You'll find other things - that just comes with buying a house. For $500, it would take hours of your time and more money than you would get. Many inspectors have some kind of warranty, so you can check on that.
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