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Old 02-25-2006, 11:18 PM   #1
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


First off I'm sorry if this is not a good forum to ask such a question. If so admin please delete post but figured why not.

here's my story:

Just purchased a house for sale by owner on Dec 15, 2005. Seller is a "flipper". Seller explained that "new roof" was put on house. Inspection showed that yes new shingles but inspector could not gain access to crawl space to see if any damage occured. Anyway within a few weeks of moving in we get a leak. We look look look until finally we gained access to the attic/crawlspace where we find a wet roof. The underside of the plywood is soaked in water and dripping. We call a reputable roofer to come inspect. He gets up there and walks. Certain section of the roof feels "spongy" and weak. Roofer explains that this indicates rotted plywood. He says has to scrape off the two layers and remove rotted wood and replace and lay down new mod-bit system shingles. He offered to do only one section but explained that there could be other sections that are damaged/leaking. Only way to find out is to remove all shingles. For now we have a tarp nailed in to prevent further damage. Also the flashing around the chimney was done incorrectly as well.

Now the headache. Contacted seller to notify problem and to find out who did the roof. Seller would not disclose and says, "they are not here, i'll have to call you back" Waited 10 days with no word from seller, so in the meantime that's when the roofer came, tarp secured, etc... I contacted my closing attorney to let him know what's going on. Attorney sends seller's attorney a letter and a copy of the proposal. Also called the town and find out seller never took out permits.

Well to make a long story short seller refuses to do anything as he alleges he had no idea the roof was bad and disclosed this in the disclosure. Offered to send out his "people" to inspect roof and fix leak but I do not trust. Says there is nothing wrong with roof and now that we have secured a tarp with nails we have compromised the whole roof, etc...

thoughts?

again if this is not the appropriate area to post something like this i am sorry. just didn't know where else to go! thanks guys!

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Old 02-26-2006, 06:11 AM   #2
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


You don't say what state you're in, but you've already done the first three things that you should do in any case...get a professional inspection of the problems, take temporary steps to prevent further damage, and contact an attorney.
Depending upon the circumstances, you may (or may not) have recourse against the seller and your first inspector, who failed do a proper inspection (a layover roofing job should have rung his alarm bells).
That's what courts (or the threat of) are for.
To correct the problem, there needs to be a complete tear-off of the old layers of shingles, all damaged roof decking repaired, and new roofing felt, shingles and flashing done properly.
Although I always represent sellers only, I also always highly recommend that all buyers have three things done...a pest inspection by a licensed pest control orperator, a general home inspection by a licensed GHI or a general contractor, and get title insurance (usually the only thing that a lender requires now).
Far better to deal with such issues prior to closing than to discover them later. It is the seller's responsibility (and their agent, if they have one) to fully disclose all defects, and the buyers right and responsiblity to have everything fully inspected.
It would be best to let your attorney negotiate a compromise, than to take it to court, which can be an expensive and time-consuming endeavor.
Good Luck!
Mike
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Old 02-26-2006, 01:48 PM   #3
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


thank you for your thoughts Mike.

I am in CT

Well i will see what an attorney has to say but i am willing to take this to court as i really feel the seller knew what he was doing. The seller never disclosed that it was a layover just a "New roof, no problems". So yes its our fault as well.

Here we go, in for an expensive and frustrating ride! I welcome any more comments, thanks!!!!
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Old 02-26-2006, 05:24 PM   #4
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


Did your home inspector go on the roof, or use binoculars from the ground? Either way, he should have noticed the improper flashing around the chimney. Did he make note of multiple layer shingles in his report? How badly blocked was the attic access on the day of inspection. I'm guessing he didn't walk the roof, or he would have noticed the soft sheathing underfoot.
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Old 02-26-2006, 10:25 PM   #5
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


the home inspector did not go on the roof. he did use binoculars from the ground but did not note there were two layers. Only the roofer knew this. He said the first layer is rolled roofing while the second is asphalt shingles. The attic/crawlspace is very hard to access as the second floor was the attic. So the only way would be to open up the celing to see.
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Old 02-27-2006, 02:16 AM   #6
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


imetal,
I think that you have a good case here, so let your attorney go after the seller.
Good Luck!
Mike
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Old 03-01-2006, 10:57 AM   #7
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


well i'm in the process of consulting with various litigation lawyers for free consultations. trying to find the right lawyer in itself is tough. but it does seem like we have a case against the seller. lots of things are not adding up. and its leaning towards he knew that the roof was damaged when he purchased the home to flip. the guy was a good con man. nice as can be, answer to anything i threw at him, always 10 steps ahead of me. live and learn. wish me luck guys!
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Old 03-02-2006, 09:03 AM   #8
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


Hi Mike, if I may ask...

I noticed this seller used a real estate agent originally before he "went FSBO". I noticed the seller left their sign in our garage. For whatever reason I remember him saying, "I don't want to use agent, they are no good, blah blah blah, they want so much money, horrible people, blah blah blah so i sell it myself!"

i'm thinking maybe something came up with the two and maybe the agent might have some evidence to support my case. Maybe the agent knew about the roof??? Told him he had to do things by the book? Just curious if I can call this person listed on the sign and ask questions? Thanks Mike!
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Old 03-02-2006, 10:53 AM   #9
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


well no dice, agency would not offer me any info in regards to the seller/agent relationship. the only thing they said was that it is weird that the sign is still on our property.
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Old 03-02-2006, 04:11 PM   #10
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


If the listing has expired, the agency most likely will not provide any information, as they would be required to do with an active listing.
You might try to speak informally with the listing agent, if they will tell you who that was, to see if they know anything about the roof.
Good Luck!
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Old 03-05-2006, 11:31 AM   #11
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


Take pictures of the roof (outside)
Take pictures of the damaged plywood inside (attic)
Is the insulation in the attic water damaged from the leak?
You mentioned that the first layer was a rolled roof. What is the slope of this roof? Is it almost flat? If it is almost flat than it will have a tendency to leak without a rubber roof.
Take any pictures of the attic floor that may show that the problem has existed longer than seller claims.
Do you see any repair of a leak below the leaking area? Does it look like the ceiling below the leak has been stain blocked with paint and repainted? Has the drywall on the ceiling been replaced but only in this room? Does this room have a drop ceiling and all the the seller had to do was to replace the drop ceiling tile when the roof did leak before closing?

Did the seller mention nay other work that was performed on the house after he purchased it?
I would double check all his work.
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Old 03-05-2006, 09:03 PM   #12
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Seller covered bad roof up, suggestions?


We have taken pics but we need to wait for the roofer to come to take off the shingles to expose the actual roof. then we'll get a clear pic of where the damage is, etc...

As far as I can see some of the insulation in the attic is damaged. So that will have to be replaced.

The roof is near flat.

When we looked at the house before closing there was no indication of a leak. The ceilings in the downstairs were NEW. so... I know the seller said there use to be a drop ceiling but he took it out and put in a regular ceiling. The leak follows a path and always goes to the downstairs bathroom. It opened up in the seam (where the two pieces of sheet rock come together). But the day before closing i saw no indication of water coming through.

You have some good points, thanks for your comments!

Quote:
Originally Posted by redline
Take pictures of the roof (outside)
Take pictures of the damaged plywood inside (attic)
Is the insulation in the attic water damaged from the leak?
You mentioned that the first layer was a rolled roof. What is the slope of this roof? Is it almost flat? If it is almost flat than it will have a tendency to leak without a rubber roof.
Take any pictures of the attic floor that may show that the problem has existed longer than seller claims.
Do you see any repair of a leak below the leaking area? Does it look like the ceiling below the leak has been stain blocked with paint and repainted? Has the drywall on the ceiling been replaced but only in this room? Does this room have a drop ceiling and all the the seller had to do was to replace the drop ceiling tile when the roof did leak before closing?

Did the seller mention nay other work that was performed on the house after he purchased it?
I would double check all his work.

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