Real Estate Gone Wrong


Hi jim! I’m a disabled vet and my wife and I purchased a home with VA loan in October. It is a riverfront home and last week we lost over 100+ feet of land. We were told by neighbour that the owner knew the land had issues and there were previous flooding and there were structures that dropped into the river. My home now is less than 15 feet away from the water and the sheriff is meeting with me tomorrow to see if evacuation is needed. There was a box on the form17 that he did not check off asking if there were previous flooding. I spoke with the river and flood engineer earlier today and he even mentioned he told the previous owner that the home is unstable and by summer it will be engulfed by the river. Do you know anyone who can help? I’ve used all my savings for this place and now have a $2200 mortgage for a place we can’t even reside in. Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you sir

Jim's Reply:

You need to hire a lawyer, there's just no way around it. Nobody will provide a free lawyer because you're a disabled veteran, that only happens when you're dealing with VA benefits. Your disability didn't interfere with you purchasing the place and it won't help you with the problem you now have. A VA loan doesn't guarantee you a great deal, in doesn't promise you anything. The VA loan certificate guarantees the lender who financed you that they will get paid one way or another.

The old adage of, "Let the buyer beware" is never truer that when we purchase a home.

I'm a homeowner and I've used my VA home loan certificate a number of times over the years. When we enter into a real estate transaction we can't depend on others to do our due diligence for us. If there are unchecked boxes or spaces left blank, it's our responsibility to ask questions before we close a deal. I've looked at a number of "Form 17" documents and I can't find one that has any reference to flooding so I'm not sure what document you have. But I can't understand why you confess to accepting an incomplete contract?

I'd have to assume that if you bought waterfront property that you purchased flood insurance. If you don't have insurance that would cover such a catastrophe, I'm not at all sure what to tell you other than you need professional legal help and you need it now.

  • PS from StatesideLegal: Use the "Find legal help" directory to contact the "LRS provider" near you and request a low-cost consultation with a private attorney who handles real estate purchases for home buyers.