Agent

Beware when buying ‘as is’

The $20,000 mistake

DEAR BARRY: Before we purchased our home, the sellers hired their own home inspector. We were given a copy of the report and bought the house "as is" because no major problems were disclosed. Two months later, we had a sewage backup. We snaked it out, but two weeks later it happened again, and then again, and then again … Our plumber says the main sewer line has major root damage. A new line is needed, and the repair bid is $5,000. That's problem No. 1. Problem No. 2 is the large deck and retaining wall in the backyard. The structure is totally rotted, and replacement is estimated at $15,000. Shouldn't these problems have been disclosed by the sellers and their home inspector? --Michael DEAR MICHAEL: Some disclosures should have come from the sellers, and some from the home inspector. So let's sort through the details. A home inspector cannot know about internal problems in a sewer line. All an inspector can do is report defects that are apparent at the time of...