When Oregon residents buy a home, they expect that they’re buying a home in good condition. If the home is not in good condition, buyers assume that all information about any defects has been properly disclosed and accounted for in the sale price. In most cases, this is exactly the way real estate transactions work. In some cases, however, sellers don’t disclose home defects.

What types of defects are often undisclosed?

There are many different types of defects that go undisclosed during real estate transactions. Most of them are defects that are difficult to detect or notice unless they’re pointed out.

Many people fail to disclose things like rusted pipes or damaged sewer lines. Unless an inspection is done, this type of damage can be hidden away very easily. Another type of moisture-related damage that often goes undisclosed is hidden water damage. If there’s a leak somewhere inside the house, it’s very likely you won’t find it until long after you’ve moved in. Windows that don’t provide much ventilation are another major issue. If you visit the home you’re interested in buying in the warmer months, you may not realize that the windows are not working as they should. You may only find this out when the colder weather hits.

Wiring that has gone long past its prime is another type of defect that’s often left undisclosed. When you buy the house, the wiring may be working, but it could be on its last legs. Other frequently undisclosed issues include those related to HVAC, plumbing or electrical systems. Not disclosing issues with these types of systems can end up becoming an extremely costly issue for a new homeowner, and it means the seller has run afoul of real estate law. It is the seller’s responsibility to list out all material defects on a home. If a new homeowner is able to discover the defects before the sale of the house goes through, they may be able to cancel the sale.

How can someone get help if they’ve discovered that there were undisclosed defects in a house they’ve just bought?

Buying a home is a major purchase, and discovering undisclosed defects in that home can be very devastating. People who are in this position may benefit by working with attorneys who have experience dealing with this type of law.