Can homeowners seek compensation for nondisclosure of termites?

Termites, those silent destroyers, can wreak havoc on a home’s structural integrity.

Unbeknownst to many Alabama homeowners, these pests can lurk in the shadows, causing damage that may not be immediately visible. But what happens if the previous owner fails to disclose a termite infestation?

The duty of disclosure

When selling a home, Many homeowners sign and complete a Seller’s disclosure statement, and if they do, there is an expectation that the seller will disclose any known issues, including termite infestations.  Failing to disclose such information  after completing a seller’s disclosure statement could lead to complications for both the seller and the unsuspecting buyer.

Uncovering the infestation

Upon discovering a termite infestation in your newly acquired Alabama home, it is natural to feel a sense of frustration and concern. The first step is to gather evidence of the infestation, documenting the extent of the damage and any attempts to rectify the situation.

Time matters

One key factor in seeking compensation is the timeframe of the termite infestation discovery. If you unearthed the issue shortly after purchasing the property, it strengthens your case that the infestation was present and not disclosed prior to the closing. However, the longer it takes for the infestation to surface, the more challenging it may be to establish a connection to the previous owner’s non-disclosure, or the non disclosure of  the termite company.

Pursuing compensation

Alabama law generally supports the notion that a seller who voluntarily signs a seller’s disclosure must disclose known issues, including termite problems. If proven that the previous owner was aware of the infestation and failed to disclose it, you may have grounds to seek compensation.  In addition, termite companies who perform Wood Infestation Inspection Reports must disclose all visible and accessible signs of an active or previous termite infestation.

Every year, property owners spend more than $2 billion to treat termite infestations. If you find yourself grappling with a termite-infested home due to the previous owner’s lack of disclosure, you have avenues to get compensated.

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