Results 1 to 6 of 6
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Posts
    23

    Default Seller Didn't Disclose Important Issues with Hvac Prior to Closing

    My question involves real estate located in the State of: Texas

    The house I purchased was built in 2017.

    The seller didn't initially appear shady, was willing to work with some things. For example initially the sprinkler system had a few cut wires. They fixed that. I went with the realtor's recommended inspector and had the house inspected late November. The closing was set right after Christmas. They did give me a repair bill they paid to have the Heat Pump replaced in late December (~$342). Admittedly that should have raised a red flag given it failed and the house is so new but I said okay fine, new Heat Pump.

    Fast forward about 2 months later. Last night I noticed my thermostat failed to climb over 70* when I had it set for 75*. I turned it off and on, no avail. I knew it was cold but we had pretty cold nights before and it had no problem. Later on the temperature dropped into the high 60's while the temp was still set to 75*... it didn't get 'freezing' but it was it was much cooler than it should have been.

    I took heed to the receipt thinking maybe it was the Heat Pump failing again and that the HVAC contractor may need to have another look given the previous repair was less than 3 months ago when the seller was still in possession of the house.

    Well during the course of interacting with the HVAC company, I come to find that there were numerous attempts (many more than the single receipt that the seller provided me) during the course of only a few months to service the HVAC, many due to shorted wires, fuses and relays blowing and eventually the heat pump. The HVAC company eventually ruled out that the ventilation system on the house was faulty and causing the system to short. During the course, they had to replace:
    -- The main circuit board
    -- Several breakers / fuses
    -- Wiring
    -- Heat pump
    The ventilation system is not the liability of the HVAC system but the builder of the home. Supposedly the warranty of the home expired and the only thing currently covered is the foundation, thus the seller didn't get the ventilation system fixed. Instead he disconnected before the inspection which the HVAC company verified because they determined it was the root cause of the shorts but left it connected, then later the heat pump failed after the inspection and they also found the ventilation system disconnected which they themselves did not do. The inspector also did not note on the inspection report that the system was disconnected, nor did the seller note that he was having problems with it on the seller's disclosure.

    Although the ventilation system remains to this date to be disconnected from the system, the initial surge is what is suspected to have caused the HVAC system so many problems and is suspected to have drastically reduced its lifespan. Knowing something like this, I definitely would have considered other options before purchasing, and it sounds like the seller was not only fully aware of the problem but rigged it to pass home inspection.

    I chose to hold off on repairing the HVAC because I dont want to throw money away at a system that may continue to fail prematurely...

    meanwhile, do I have any recourse? I don't know Texas law on disclosure on condition of the home and I also know Texas is an as - is state but this still seems very shady.

    My main issue isn't the HVAC but that the seller chose to hide it and not disclose it and also the inspector also somehow missed that the ventilation system was disconnected from the HVAC.

    These are the comments on the repair orders. I most of this was happening during the purchasing process, I only came to know about one of them during the process, the rest of them I found out today.

    11/27/19
    Red wire on heat pump was shorted and causing 3 amp fuse to pop. Replaced wire and system would come on in heat pump mode for few mins then pop 3 amp fuse. No
    visible damage to wires. Not seeing any burnt marks on defrost board. After replacing fuse system is popping fuse as soon as heat pump starts. Disconnect heat pump
    wiring and let system run in emergency heat. Will need to return to look further into system to find the short(s)..
    11/28/19
    Customer had a short killing 3 amp fuse, found out customer disconnected his home Honeywell ventilation system, had an inspection 2 days ago a,d hooked it back up,
    found ventilation system causing a short, disconnected ventilation system, rewired system as a 2 heat 1 cool, tested system, system ran with out blowing fuse, system is
    heating properly at this time
    11/29/19
    Fuse popped again. Narrowed the short down to the defrost control board. Tested Contactor and reversing valve. Both working normal. Need to replace defrost control.
    Will follow up Monday on pry availability.
    12/3/19
    Replaced defrost control board. 14HPX-036-230-21. 1917F22473. Part under warranty. Replaced contactor as well. System is back online and working normal.
    1/1/20 (right before closing)
    Customer has had issues with the control fuse blowing in heat mode. I tested the system in heat an in defrost and wasn’t able to replicate the issue. The fuse did not blow
    while testing the system. Today’s visit is covered under warranty and there will be no charge to the customer
    Now here is the other issue, the dates of these repair visits per invoice all align about a week AFTER the inspection, even on the 11/28 - the inpsection was performed 11/19...so I'm not sure if the invoices was created late or if he meant he had the ventilation system disconnected for 2 days while they did the inspection. The inspector is of course denying any liability.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    17,809

    Default Re: Seller Didn't Disclose Important Issues with Hvac Prior to Closing

    I went with the realtor's recommended inspector
    That was a big mistake. Home inspectors that live or die by realtors referrals avoid doing anything that could sully the deal and cause the realtor the commission. Inspectors who do that go out of business.

    I'm guessing that your contract with the inspector has a bunch of disclaimers.

    do I have any recourse?
    Beats me. I suggest you take your situation to an attorney and review your options.

    You're going to have to fix your house. Might as well bite the bullet, document everything, get it done and then you'll know how much you spent if you want to sue somebody.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Seller Didn't Disclose Important Issues with Hvac Prior to Closing

    Quote Quoting adjusterjack
    View Post
    That was a big mistake. Home inspectors that live or die by realtors referrals avoid doing anything that could sully the deal and cause the realtor the commission. Inspectors who do that go out of business.

    I'm guessing that your contract with the inspector has a bunch of disclaimers.



    Beats me. I suggest you take your situation to an attorney and review your options.

    You're going to have to fix your house. Might as well bite the bullet, document everything, get it done and then you'll know how much you spent if you want to sue somebody.

    Yeah... I get what you mean. (and TBH I didnt know this about inspectors) Live and learn I guess.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    342

    Default Re: Seller Didn't Disclose Important Issues with Hvac Prior to Closing

    Did the seller fill out a TREC OP-H?
    https://www.trec.texas.gov/sites/def...rms/OP-H_1.pdf

    If so was anything listed on the bottom of page 1?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    6,840

    Default Re: Seller Didn't Disclose Important Issues with Hvac Prior to Closing

    Quote Quoting Kaiden
    View Post
    Yeah... I get what you mean. (and TBH I didnt know this about inspectors) Live and learn I guess.
    I frankly don't understand what you are trying to tell us about the ventilation system being turned off. I'm not going to get into telling you how a heat pump system works (there are plenty of websites that will explain it) but basically, there are two components, the air handler (inside the home) and the compressor (outside the home). They are not two separate systems in terms of you have, a heat pump and you have a ventilation system. Maybe you could explain?

    The air handler unit inside the house is the ventilation system. It has coils that act as either a condenser or an evaporator depending on whether you want heat or cooling. It also contains the blower that moves the air through the ducts in the house. The air handler and the compressor work as one unit. If the temperature drops (usually below 30 degrees) the unit will stop delivering warm air and the outside unit goes into defrost until the ice on the coils melt off. Then it should resume normal operation. And if the outside compressor continues to ice up, there are electric heating coils on the air handler that will take over. Sounds like your installation is all screwed up.

    I suggest that you start with getting a different HVAC company in there to trouble shoot the problem. The company that did the repairs is using a haphazard trial and error approach. Get it fixed then you can concentrate on who should pay for the repairs.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Seller Didn't Disclose Important Issues with Hvac Prior to Closing

    Quote Quoting budwad
    View Post
    I frankly don't understand what you are trying to tell us about the ventilation system being turned off. I'm not going to get into telling you how a heat pump system works (there are plenty of websites that will explain it) but basically, there are two components, the air handler (inside the home) and the compressor (outside the home). They are not two separate systems in terms of you have, a heat pump and you have a ventilation system. Maybe you could explain?

    The air handler unit inside the house is the ventilation system. It has coils that act as either a condenser or an evaporator depending on whether you want heat or cooling. It also contains the blower that moves the air through the ducts in the house. The air handler and the compressor work as one unit. If the temperature drops (usually below 30 degrees) the unit will stop delivering warm air and the outside unit goes into defrost until the ice on the coils melt off. Then it should resume normal operation. And if the outside compressor continues to ice up, there are electric heating coils on the air handler that will take over. Sounds like your installation is all screwed up.

    I suggest that you start with getting a different HVAC company in there to trouble shoot the problem. The company that did the repairs is using a haphazard trial and error approach. Get it fixed then you can concentrate on who should pay for the repairs.
    Admittedly I'm not very savvy on HVAC systems. The way the contractor explained it to me is that the ventilation system were ducts on the roof that controlled humidity and air quality by opening / closing depending on what was necessary. Supposedly when the system is connected to the HVAC system, fuses, amps, relays, circuit boards on the HVAC system incur a surge, and sometimes instantly give out. Per the contractor the ventilation system was installed by the builder of the home and not themselves.

    1. Sponsored Links
       

Similar Threads

  1. Seller Disclosure: Seller Did Not Disclose Inadequate HVAC Ductwork
    By Kla84 in forum Buying, Selling and Conveying Real Estate
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 01-14-2016, 08:52 AM
  2. Seller Disclosure: Seller Did Not Disclose Major Issues with the House
    By fuzzysig in forum Buying, Selling and Conveying Real Estate
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 06-17-2013, 03:55 PM
  3. Seller Disclosure: Seller Didn't Disclose Soil Contamination
    By eseller01 in forum Buying, Selling and Conveying Real Estate
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-23-2013, 04:29 AM
  4. Seller Disclosure: House Hit by Car: Seller Didn't Disclose
    By freerider78 in forum Buying, Selling and Conveying Real Estate
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 01-05-2010, 08:20 PM
  5. Seller Disclosure: Water in Basement - Seller Didn't Disclose
    By Anonymous in forum Buying, Selling and Conveying Real Estate
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 05-02-2005, 10:04 AM
 
 
Sponsored Links

Legal Help, Information and Resources