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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Good day, i have purchased a house, it needed a bit of TLC,

Resolved Question:

Good day, i have purchased a house, it needed a bit of TLC, i got it for a bargain, it was also a bank repo house. the house has only been registered now in September, after starting to do the repairs to the interior of the house we had a lot of rain, so i discovered that the roof has a leak on the knock, it made some damage and i put in a claim, assessors were sent out and it was now said that the claim will not be paid as a result of a lack maintenance. how can i be held responsible for this as the house was theirs for two years before i bought it, how did they then evaluate the house with my application and how did they approve finance and insurance, were they not ment to look at those things, yes i did look at the roof and walls when i decided to buy and i did not see any broken or loos tiles, only now with the rain did i get in the roof and see that a patch was the cause of the leak, does this maintenance mean that i will not be able to claim for anything cause the answer will always then be " we do not pay out dew to a lack of maintenance. what can i do who can i speak to as i find this is unfair.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 3 years ago.
Alex Watts :

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.

Alex Watts :

For now please let me know whether you purchased the house at auction?

Customer:

no it was not at auction, in fact it was a bank repo house and we looked at it, we did however have to put in a offer to purchase the house, but there was a problem with tha as well as there was a dispute between the bank and the previous owners on who had to accept the offer.

Alex Watts :

Ok - did you have a survey?

Alex Watts :

And you took out insurance and then the roof was poor?

Customer:

no there was no survey, the house was financed and insured by the same bank, they accessed the house and then they financed it, just after registration they congratulated me om my purchase and informed me of the insurance also being activated on the house, i then started with the renovations inside the house as i have three kids and want to get finished with the renovations as there was a lot of dust involved, after the inside is done then i would move the the outside of the building., the rain came now a month after registration, i then found water marks on my wall after a two day non stop rain, i then proceded into the roof and found a leak on the knock, and like i said i did look at the house before making an offer and i looked for the obvious things. i looked at the walls and the roof, i looked an saw that the roof needs paint but all the tiles were in place, the walls needed some paint on the outside but thee most work was inside, but never was i given any indication from the bank with regaurds to the insurance stating that there is other things that they looked at and that before they are attended to will they cover me.

Alex Watts :

Is there a clause that allows them to exclude for lack of maintenance?

Customer:

when i was in the bank to ask assistance it was said,"sorry a repo house is sold as is". all that i am mostly concerned about is the fact that seeing they are coming with the story of a lack of maintenance does that then mean i can never claim until the house is 100% fixed, i mean there is a lot of proof that i am busy with renovations, but i started inside. the house installments make a big dent in your pocket so i do a bit at a time, the outside paints are alot more than the inside.

Alex Watts :

The problem you have is this.

Alex Watts :

You purchase the house.

Alex Watts :

Unless they made actual representations that the roof was fine you have a problem

Alex Watts :

You did not have a survey, when you could have had one. This may have identified the problem

Alex Watts :

The bank are right, any house you buy is sold as seen, whether it is at auction or even a private sale.

Alex Watts :

The responsibility is on the buyer to satisfy themselves as to the condition of the property, just like when buying a car

Alex Watts :

You could try and raise a claim in the county court but based on the information you have provided, this is likely to fail

Alex Watts :

I am sorry if this is not the answer you want and certainly not the one I want to give you, but I have a duty to be honest

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer:

there is somewhere a clause that i read about the lack of maintenance, but who is responsible for the maintenance, as i just bought and am busy with maintenance, the house was the banks property for two years before i bought it, was it not for the bank to keep it maintained as it is unattended, how will a buyer know if the roof needs fixing if there is no indication of damage, the indication was only made visible now with the rain so now it can be attended to. a golden rule states if it aint broke don't fix. yes the roof needed paint that is just for a face lift but like i said there was no indication that it was faulty. you may come back to me.

Alex Watts :

You are responsible. The day contracts are exchanged you are responsible for the property.

Alex Watts :

The bank has no duty to maintain. You are responsible if you want to purchase to satisfy yourself as to the condition and any survey.

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