New Haven, MO asked in Contracts and Real Estate Law for Missouri

Q: If you are fairly certain that a seller lied on the disclosure form, is there any action you can take against them?

We are in the process buying a new house. This home was listed as being an “as is” sale. We had a home inspection preformed for our protection as it’s an 110 year old farm house. The listing stated the product had a septic system. The inspection revealed there is only a discharge pipe that is not very far into the woods behind the house. We looked back on the disclosure form and they had written “unknown” under the septic question on the form. The pipe is definitely not 110 years old and looks like it was placed fairly recently. I also found out that one of the sellers is a building inspection in our county. There are two couples selling the house, a brother and sister and their spouses. I seriously doubt that they did not have any idea about this pipe and tried to hide it by using unknown. How can their agent, who is also their niece, list it as septic and then fill out the disclosure form like that? We are in Missouri.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Ronald J. Eisenberg
Ronald J. Eisenberg
  • Chesterfield, MO
  • Licensed in Missouri

A: It is unclear from your post whether at this point you can back out of the sale. If the seller's disclosure statement is inaccurate but you are aware of the issue and still go through with the sale, you may face a challenge, if you were to sue, proving that you were damages as a result of the inaccurate statement. A house if usually a huge purchase, so I suggest that you hire an attorney review the disclosure form and contract and to provide you with legal advice.

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