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  1. #1
    Jim Dull's Avatar
    Jim Dull Guest

    Default Help Please - Revisited

    Just an update on the last thread. In addition to what I posted about the retaining wall, driveway and cracks in the basement, this house had a cracked ridge beam, a displaced chimney, a deteriorating roof, and may other problems. Needless to say, the client backed away from the deal. But get this. The selling agent and the buyers agent were both from the same agency. When the client offered to share the report, they both declined. I guess this means they feel that, if they don't see the report, they have no liabiltiy or reason to make sure the owner or next potential buyer knows that the place is a death trap and money pit. I don't feel good about this at all but I know, according to my contract, that I can not disclose any details to anyone without my clients permission. What do you suggest?

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Columbus GA
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    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    Your job is to report to YOUR client. Let the seller do whatever they want, you can't change that.

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    You can't save everybody Jim. It will be up to the next buyer to do their homework and get a home inspection as well. You did your work and got paid. Time to move on to the next one. Trying to force the issue may only create problems for you.


  4. #4
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    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    Very common here, Jim.
    The listing agent does NOT want to know about the defects much less see the report. They are legally bound to work for the best interest of their client, not the buyer. If they don't know, they can't be held responsible. Like everyone else said, pack it up and move on. You have done your job.

    Now IF the seller knows the defects, he liable to disclose (at least in my state). But if no one ever got a report and the new buyer can't prove it...
    You get the idea.
    Jim

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    "The listing agent does NOT want to know about the defects much less see the report. They are legally bound to work for the best interest of their client, not the buyer. "

    Ignoring the fact that defects exist doesn't exactly sound like working in the best interests of the client. Sure, the listing agent wants the seller to get as much as possible for the house. But ignoring the issues or not wanting to hear about them will in many cases only delay the sale even longer. If they allow themselves to find out why the buyer walked and what is wrong, they can either have the seller get repairs completed or adjust the price of the house to reflect the necessary repairs. Otherwise, the house will just sit, and sit, and sit and often force the seller to carry two mortgages.

    Not the type of realtor I would want to represent me in the sale of my house.


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    Jim,

    I guess you could always print off 20-30 copies and place in that information box on the Realtor sign out front of the house.


  7. #7
    Jim Dull's Avatar
    Jim Dull Guest

    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    I hear you all but it still bugs me. The seller has supposedly only been in the house for 3 years and I doubt that she received a disclosure which detailed the problems and obviously she didn't have a home inspector. If that house continues to shift and ruptures a gas line and someone dies, I am going to feel terrible. However, I know you guys are right and I need to forget about and move on. By the way, my clients were pretty astounded that the realtor didn't want to know and have lost trust in that realtor. They plan to change realtors but I doubt that they will find anyone around here that is any better.


  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    Jim, There is a little item called Disclosure and it comes with a signed form.
    A seller must truthfully disclose any known defects with their house. If they do not they are liable in the future. The broker is also.
    If you never want anything to do with either broker or the office again then call the office manager and tell them where they stand in the law suit that could come back on them. As a friend of coarse, not on the offensive.
    The coarse of action I prefer on these type of people is this.
    I mention to the selling broker that if the deal falls through I will be coming back the house in 6 months after it sells and will be consulting with the new owners to make sure all was disclosed properly. If they have not they will have my testimony to help them take the broker and owner to court.
    This stuff pisses me off also.
    I always ask for client to get numerous disclosures from the owners on different items that come up in my reports to make sure they stay honest.
    This is also called, Make sure someone else is holding the ball when the **** hits the fan! Anyway, that was about 4 cents worth and way too much info, wayne


  9. #9
    Jim Dull's Avatar
    Jim Dull Guest

    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    Thanks Wayne.

    I couldn't care less if I have anything to do with the realtors. I don't even offer my business card to realtors at inspections. If they ask, I will give them one but that's it. I am polite to them when they are at the inspection but do not offer information. If they overhear what I'm telling the client (which this one did), then I feel they should be liable for disclosure. Calling the office manager wouldn't do much good in this case since both the seller and buyer realtors were from the same company and the seller realtor is the owner and broker of the company. I do like your idea though. If I see that the house is sold, I will certainly let the new owner know that I am available for testimony if they should happen to go to court.


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    Quote Originally Posted by wayne soper View Post
    Jim, There is a little item called Disclosure and it comes with a signed form.
    A seller must truthfully disclose any known defects with their house. If they do not they are liable in the future. The broker is also.
    If you never want anything to do with either broker or the office again then call the office manager and tell them where they stand in the law suit that could come back on them. As a friend of coarse, not on the offensive.
    The coarse of action I prefer on these type of people is this.
    I mention to the selling broker that if the deal falls through I will be coming back the house in 6 months after it sells and will be consulting with the new owners to make sure all was disclosed properly. If they have not they will have my testimony to help them take the broker and owner to court.
    This stuff pisses me off also.
    I always ask for client to get numerous disclosures from the owners on different items that come up in my reports to make sure they stay honest.
    This is also called, Make sure someone else is holding the ball when the **** hits the fan! Anyway, that was about 4 cents worth and way too much info, wayne
    Not all states have disclosure laws on the books. Caveat Emptor!

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    One needs to be careful though since, at least in this state, inspectors are prohibited from sharing the inspection/report with anyone but their client without their approval.
    Now, I doubt that the client would have a problem disclosing information on a property they did not buy, but you never know. Lawsuits have been filed for less and they tend to take the shotgun approach, naming everyone involved, possibly including your client.
    Sometimes the old adage to let sleeping dogs lie is good advice.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Dallas, Texas

  12. #12
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    Yes I understand not all states have disclosures and I didn't recommend sharing the report, Just whatever useful information that may stay in my small brain. HAhA and thanks wayne
    Have you ever scared the pants off a broker? No, me neither and I'm not looking forward to it. Ugh! what a picture I jsut got in my minds eye. I have to go throw up, Bye


  13. #13
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    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    I would ask my client if I may share the information, and when they say 'Yes.', find some reason to get back into the house 'to retrieve something I forgot', and leave a copy of the report in the attic ... so the next inspector cannot miss it.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  14. #14
    Tim Moreira's Avatar
    Tim Moreira Guest

    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    I would think that the buyer would be great full for what you just saved them from and would most likely love to give you permission to share the report with whomever.

    I do like Jerry's suggestion of leaving it in the attic for the next inspector to read.

    Hopefully he's not the $99.95 buyer's agent that will be there for a one hour inspection.

    Rest assured, some pour unsuspecting SOB will get stuck with that money pit. Hopefully they can go after the seller for failure to disclose.


  15. #15
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    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    I've done a few things, sly at times, like once when I sent a copy in a plain brown envelope (no company name on it), return receipt requested, marked 'Confidential - dated material, open immediately' (or something like that).

    Of course, *I* had a receipt showing the received the package, and *they* just had to open it *immediately*, and now they had to disclose what was in the report.

    I know, I got a phone call about it, which, I informed them, was my evidence that *they* *read* *it* ... you should have heard the silence on the other end of the phone when it sunk in that they should *not* have called me, but just pretended to 'not have opened or read' the contents of the package.

    Oh, what fun I had at times ...

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  16. #16
    Tim Moreira's Avatar
    Tim Moreira Guest

    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    Jerry,

    I'll bet there a few folks that are out there looking to beat you up.

    I hope you have a Florida CWP


  17. #17
    Richard Rushing's Avatar
    Richard Rushing Guest

    Default Re: Help Please - Revisited

    Jim Luttrell wrote:
    "One needs to be careful though since, at least in this state, inspectors are prohibited from sharing the inspection/report with anyone but their client without their approval."


    That is partially right. The exception is: "for observed immediate safety hazards to occupants exposed to such hazards".
    Which is reasonable and should be done if the folks in the home are exposed to a safety hazard. I certainly make it a point to let the occupant (seller) know about a safety condition that could prevent them from harm. This both helps them and hurts them-- it helps them obviously from a safety stand point. It hurts them because they now have to fix it or disclose to the next buyer if mine walks.

    Rich






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