Misrepresented listing gives buyers wiggle room

Future-Proof: Navigate Threats, Seize Opportunities at ICNY 2018 | Jan 22-26 at the Marriott Marquis, Times Square, New York

DEAR BARRY: We bought a home in Virginia but did not actually see it during the escrow because we are serving in the military. The house was listed as 2,300 square feet, with four bedrooms and a "lake view." During the escrow, we learned that the house is only 2,000 square feet; one of the bedrooms was added to the building without a permit; and the "lake" is actually a retention pond because of drainage problems in the area. We contacted our agent and he advised us to consult an attorney. None of the local real estate attorneys would represent us because they had a conflict of interest with the agent. We hired an attorney who was not familiar with real estate law, and he didn't have any definite answers. We were afraid of losing our deposit, so we closed the deal. What can we do to recover our losses? --Doug DEAR DOUG: It is always disappointing to hear of someone closing a deal because of perceived financial pressure. In your case, it is particular...