Common problems home sellers do not tell potential buyers

On Behalf of | Apr 15, 2024 | Real Estate Disputes

If you are planning to buy a home, you need to be extra vigilant about inspection because there are sellers who will do anything to close a sale – including not disclosing problems with their homes. As a buyer, you need to be vigilant in knowing every single issue with the home you are planning to purchase. Not doing so can cost you a significant amount of time and money in future repairs. Doing a thorough home inspection before buying can alert you to the following problems home sellers might hide from you.

But what happens when the buyer discovers serious issues with the property after the deal is done? There are times when legal remedies may be available. Three examples of issues that can qualify include the following.


Mold grows in the home or building’s darkest, dampest spaces. Apart from being a cosmetic problem, it can contribute to health issues and cause allergies and infections. Watch out for black, white, spotted or green spots in your home that appear powdery, velvety or cottony. Mold also has a musty and earthy smell.

Water damage

Water damage often hides behind walls and spreads underneath carpeting and may not always be obvious until it becomes serious. It is important that you spot water damage in its initial stages to avoid costly repairs in the future. Keep an eye out for water stains, paint damage, pooling water, dampness and humidity.

Foundation cracks

While small cracks around a home are completely normal or safe, deep cracks in the foundation are often a cause for concern. Watch out for hairline, horizontal, diagonal, stair step and vertical cracks. You might need to consult the services of a structural engineer to prevent further damage.

Legal remedies

As noted above, in certain cases legal remedies are available after a buyer discovers mold, water damage, or foundation issues. New York state law generally requires sellers to fill out a Property Condition Disclosure Statement. The buyer could likely hold the seller accountable if they failed to disclose and/or attempted to hide known issues. An attorney experienced in this area of real estate law can review the situation and provide guidance.