Failed by seller disclosure

Home Sale Hindsight

Q: I bought a property in Florida about two years ago. Apparently, there were lots of pending problems with the property that the seller did not disclose. I’ve had to pay heavy assessments, and think that it’s only fair to hold the seller accountable for the lack of disclosure at the time of purchase. I’m trying to decide how to proceed on that, but am interested to know what you think I could have done differently.

A: When listing agents work with sellers, they often say, "disclose, disclose, disclose." With buyers, the mantra is different: diligence, diligence, diligence.

Of course, every buyer is absolutely, 100 percent entitled to know any "material" information about the property that the seller knows, or should know, in time to make an informed decision whether to proceed with the purchase of a property.