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Many things missed on home inspection

We bought our house about 6 months ago.  We like the house but as first time homeowners, we wish our agent had been more helpful.  We basically found all the listings we saw ourselves, and he called the sellers and did paperwork for our sale.  When we asked him to suggest houses for us, his response (direct quote) was "I think you're doing fine by yourselves".  We should have fired him then.  He "gifted" us a home warranty which we took, but never received any information on it until several weeks after we bought the house, and then only after asking a few times.  We did some negotiations with the sellers but our agent advised not to ask for too much because otherwise the sellers' feeling would be hurt and they may walk away from the sale.  We also used the home inspector he recommended.  He found some things, but missed several, including the presence of asbestos that was not covered or contained (there is asbestos around our air ducts but it's covered appropriately), our furnace is not installed properly and violates safety codes, the water heater and furnace are way too close together and violate code, and there was an ongoing slow gas leak near the furnace.  The home warranty doesn't cover any of this, I believe.  I can understand missing little things but the asbestos can be seen from across the room.  If I knew what I was looking at I'd certainly have asked the sellers to fix it.

We are going to fix everything and we still like our house, but I would like to at least let someone know I am very unhappy with missed safety violations.  We did ask our real estate agent but he basically said we should be grateful for his home warranty gift and there's nothing he can do about it.
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February 27 - Woodland
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Answers (2)

Profile picture for Dan Tabit
It sounds like you have two issues, a lazy (and potentially incompetent) agent and a poor inspector.  I'm sorry you're going through this.  Too often people put very little thought into selecting their agents, we're all licensed, friendly and seem to be knowledgeable, but that isn't enough.  80% to 90% of the business is done by 20% to 10% of the licensed agents.  The average licensee doesn't make a living at it. 
Finding a really good agent is really important.  The best agents put your needs first.  They have experience and know what to look for in a house and to watch out for.  We refer our clients to the best inspectors because we'd rather lose a deal at inspection, then have issues like this after the fact when it's too late to do anything about it.
You could let the agent know you're disappointed and notify their managing broker as well.  This doesn't sound like an agent you would ever refer people to or use again, so don't.  You may be years away from needing a great agent, but if you keep your eyes and ears open now, you may find one along the way. 
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February 27
Its hard to say much on the Realtor without knowing if he made proper disclosures, offered several home inspectors, etc.

Certainly if the home inspection company had nothing in their report pertaining to serious flaws, possible asbestos, etc. all it would take is one demanding phone call and your check for that home inspection would be in the mail to you (they far prefer this than risk you coming at them in court for much more).

I understand you don't (and should not) like the fact the Realtor did not help lead you. You can certainly write a letter to his broker on that end of it so its known by someone.

Depending on how the Realtor did in terms of disclosures, leading you to one inspector or possible errors in a more serious regard than simply being a lazy Realtor, etc. you may have a more serious violation... If this is the case a complaint can be filed with the state lic. board, a civil action can be filed, or maybe you would have a little more solid ground to make request of his Broker. 
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February 27
 
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