Noah Seidenberg, Chicagoland and Suburbs (800) 858-7917 (Coldwell Banker)

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Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

Noah, as diplomatically as possible I wold let the seller know that he is opening himself up for potential lawsuits later on if he doesn't disclose this fact.  If his neighbors know about this, they will surely tell the new owners and they could and will come after him financially.

Feb 14, 2015 07:11 AM
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

I let my clients know taht they need to disclose this issue because I have to because I know about the issue.  that usually solves it.

Feb 14, 2015 12:45 PM
Jill Murty, Realtor - Orange County, CA
PREA Realty - Laguna Niguel, CA

I'd mention to the seller they might have accidentally forgotten to disclose the leak and the repair.  

I always advise my seller clients "If in doubt, disclose."   Things that sellers think may be horrifying to buyers are often seen as no big deal to most buyers.  Even if a disclosure causes a buyer to walk, another buyer won't be bothered by the same issue.

Gabe Sanders makes awesome points about the risk of lawsuits and neighbor's potential knowledge of material facts.

Noah Seidenberg - Have the talk with the sellers after the listing agreement is signed.

Feb 14, 2015 07:35 AM
Noah Seidenberg
Coldwell Banker - Evanston, IL
Chicagoland and Suburbs (800) 858-7917

Gabe Sanders that is really a right on answer. There is no doubt the new owners are going to meet. There is a good chance that through conversation this could come out. Thank you.

Feb 14, 2015 07:21 AM
Richard Robibero, ABR, SRS
Panorama R.E. Limited - Toronto, ON
Selling Your Home as if it were My Own!

I think Nina Hollander 's response is best. It's the same up here. If something was repaired then let them know. No use hiding this fact. It is what it is.

Feb 14, 2015 09:48 PM
Nina Hollander
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

Noah -- in North and South Carolina if a defect was repaired and there are no ongoing issues, it does not have to be disclosed. You only disclose what has not been repaired. However, if it was something serious enough, I'd still encourage my seller to disclose along with repair information.

Feb 14, 2015 08:46 PM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


I would disclose and encourage the sellers to give you the paperwork and proof that the work was done.  I would let them know that you know about this.  Maybe, it is my California sensitivity knowing the litigious nature of our state and its constituents, we always disclosed as much as possible, and if repairs were made asked for the paperwork.  It avoids a lot of headaches later on.  A

Feb 14, 2015 06:10 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hi Noah -- in California one of our many disclosures is the Seller Property Questionnaire which asks a seller about repairs that have previously been made. If I notice a discrepancy in what I know(or have been told) on any disclosure, I point it out.  We also have a disclosure where the listing/selling agents write their observations and what they know about the property.   


As Alexandra Ron & Alexandra Seigel commented we live in a highly litigious state so when in doubt disclose disclose disclose upfront --- it may be a reason that a buyer does not purchase but it save time, money and aggravation in the long run.


Feb 15, 2015 08:49 AM
John Helmick
John Helmick Success & Ohio Property Inspection Services - Dayton, OH
Realtor Personal Growth/Success Coach

As an owner of a home inspection company...what happens when the inspector puts a note in the inspection report that there was this issue - but that it appears it has been repaired correctly?  (We have had buyers tell us straight up that they now suspect that the seller is trying to hide things from us.)

Feb 15, 2015 01:04 AM
Vera Gonzalez
RE/MAX Suburban, Inc. - Sterling Heights, MI
Gonzo For Real Estate

Noah Seidenberg sorry you lost the listing. Here we have to disclose. It is not fun to lose, think of all the other things you could have lost if you would have moved forward, sleep, reputation, and piece of mind. If the seller planned on being dishonest about this, who knows what else later on. 

Feb 14, 2015 11:11 PM
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce

Calll the listing agent...many "assume" repaired means no need to disclose.

Feb 14, 2015 10:50 PM
Debbie Reynolds
Platinum Properties - Clarksville, TN
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent

Oh I handle this before they fill it out. I tell them to disclose everything they know about the history of the property and how it was corrected. I use specifics and in this case I would directly mention the foundation leak. I also tell them that most buyers are not overly concerned when they see it disclosed and know that it was repaired. There is a comfort level in the honesty of it.

Feb 14, 2015 10:37 PM
Alan May
Coldwell Banker Residential - Evanston, IL
Helping you find your way home.

In Illinois, if the defect has been repaired and is no longer a problem, there is no requirement to disclose.  IF the leak has lived through a few good strong rains, then it's no longer a problem, and no longer needs to be disclosed.

Nothing wrong with disclosing the "repair" if that's what the seller wants to do, but if they don't want to, they don't have to, and you, as their agent, are not representing a lie by going along.

In fact, in Illinois, we agents are not really supposed to "advise" our clients on what to answer on the Illinois Property Disclosure form.  If they have questions about their answers, we are supposed to refer them to their real estate attorney.

Like you, I tend to try to err on the side of "overdisclosure"... but I'm not going to insist that a seller disclose a defect that's been repaired.


Feb 14, 2015 10:35 PM
Scott Godzyk
Godzyk Real Estate Services - Manchester, NH
One of Manchester NH's Leading Agents

I would speak with my seller to make sure they properly fill out the form. 

Feb 14, 2015 09:58 PM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

I alwasy advice  sellers to be honest when filling out the seller's disclosure.

Feb 14, 2015 09:36 PM
Dee Toohey
Innovative Realty Solutions Group - Longwood, FL
Broker, ABR, AHWD, CIPS, FMS, ePro

If they don't disclose, you must. Tell them about their liability. That usually solves the problem. If it doesn't, have them sign stating they aware aware of their liability. Your attorney can draw it up for you. 

Feb 14, 2015 08:56 PM
Richard Burge Realty/ Burge Homes
Richard Burge Realty/Burge Homes - Conway, SC
Broker in Charge/Owner

Disclose is always the best way to keep out of trouble.  We have a box that can be checked no representation if they do not want to disclose.  I think that is why the home inspection is so important to bring to light things that are not seen.

Feb 14, 2015 06:43 PM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Noah Seidenberg it better be disclosed or get ready for a law suit.....of course, that need to be told nicely... 

Feb 14, 2015 02:37 PM
Evelyn Johnston
Friends & Neighbors Real Estate - Elkhart, IN
The People You Know, Like and Trust!

You remind them that by saying no to this kind of repair it opens up liability issues against them.  Suddenly they are anxious to correct the "error".

Feb 14, 2015 12:06 PM
Ron Marshall
Marshall Enterprises - Saint Michael, MN
Birdhouse Builder Extraordinaire

You really have some great answers here, Noah.  And, I understand that here in Minnesota, any agent or broker is required to disclose if asked.  So the owner might as well fess up.

Feb 14, 2015 07:54 AM
Larry Johnston
Broker, Friends & Neighbors Real Estate and Elkhart County Subdivisions, LLC - Elkhart, IN
Broker,Friends & Neighbors Real Estate, Elkhart,IN

I would bring it to the attention of the listing agent, so they could have the seller correct the disclosure.  If the buyer wants to make an offer, it would be listed as a condition to have the leaks repaired.  Of course you always insist on an inspection.

Feb 14, 2015 07:51 AM
Noah Seidenberg
Coldwell Banker - Evanston, IL
Chicagoland and Suburbs (800) 858-7917

Alexandra you are right but I am afraid it is a little less clear here. I have lost a listing because of mentioning the fact that I questioned in a friendly manor that work was done. Yes our honesty is the most important issue and because of that, another agent has that property listed.

Would I represent a lie? No but it does not make it any easier to take mentally.

Feb 14, 2015 06:59 AM