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Real estate dispute from a defect that was hidden intentionally

Many real estate transactions in South Florida go smoothly, with the buyer and seller working together to push the deal toward a successful closing. People who find themselves a party to this type of transaction can consider themselves lucky, because not all real estate transactions go from start to finish without a dispute popping up.

Potential buyers in South Florida may know about the phrase "buyer beware" and its context while looking for an ideal piece of property. In general, the burden is on the buyer to determine whether there are any potential problems with the home they are going to buy. However, a real estate dispute can arise when a seller intentionally hides a defect that the seller knows about and knows is a major problem.

Previous posts here have described some of the circumstances in which a seller has a duty to disclose information about the property to potential buyers. But, the unfortunate reality is that some sellers may attempt to skirt the rules, deliberately concealing a problem with their home in order to get the deal done. In most cases, the sellers probably hope that the problem won't become apparent to the buyer for several years.

So, what options do buyers have if a defect is discovered years after they purchase a home? Well, first it must be determined that the issue existed at the time of the purchase of the property - and that the seller knew about it. From there, litigation may be necessary in order for the buyer to recover some form of compensation.

Source: FindLaw, "Questions to Ask When Buying a Home," Accessed Nov. 8, 2015

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