Home sellers and home buyers who make purchase agreements with each other are generally bound by their contracts’ terms. Many real estate purchase agreements contain language detailing just what repairs home sellers are responsible for completing before home sales close. Also, homebuyers sometimes have home inspectors or contractors check out the homes they’re buying to ensure completeness of any agreed-upon repairs. As for repairs after closing, the seller’s liability is complicated. It may or may not exist.
Many buyers insert repair clauses into the real estate purchase agreements they and their home sellers sign. Home sellers are generally liable for completing repairs they’ve agreed to make listed in the real estate purchase contracts they’ve executed with buyers. However, home buyers sometimes waive home repair inspection requirements after seller repairs are made, thus possibly ending seller liability for such repairs. But legal action could be possible if a home seller falsely assures a homebuyer that agreed-upon repairs have been completed.
Home sellers are required to give truthful information about home defects they know or should have known about. Home sellers can never deliberately withhold from potential buyers knowledge about their homes’ condition that could later pose problems, such as lead paint or termites.
It’s common in real estate for home buyers to demand their sellers cover repairs discovered after closing. Typically, buyers will demand their sellers cover repairs they believe their sellers should have known were needed prior to sale closing. Reach out to your home’s seller if you believe he’s still liable for any repairs after closing. Be aware, though, that your home’s seller doesn’t have to just automatically make any post-sale repairs you think are needed.
A real estate purchase contract’s language is always examined whenever disputes about post-sale closing repairs arise between sellers and buyers. Real estate contracts containing no repair conditions may free sellers from post sale-closing liability except in cases of possible fraud. However, fraud or liability of home sellers for post-sale repairs is normally best handled by lawyers. Seek legal advice if you believe your home’s seller deliberately misrepresented its condition on disclosure forms or knew about defects and didn’t perform necessary repairs.