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Latent Defects—What Are They Exactly?

For many people, buying a home is the expense of a lifetime. After all, this is where you’ll get up every morning, share meals with friends, spend Sundays relaxing, and who knows, maybe even start a family. So after having spent an age hunting for your dream home, the last thing you want is to discover latent defects. That’s why it’s important to understand what a latent defect is and avoid any unnecessary stress.


Firstly, what is a defect?

A defect is defined as a major fault that causes serious inconveniences and prevents the owner from using or fully enjoying their property.

So how do you know you are dealing with a latent defect?

  • The defect must be so significant that you would not have paid the agreed price or simply would not have bought the property if you had known about it.

  • Of course, the defect must be latent (hidden). More specifically, it could not have been discovered by a prudent and diligent buyer, i.e., there was no indication of its presence during visits prior to purchasing the property.

  • The defect must therefore be unknown to the buyer at the time of purchase. If the seller mentioned the defect before the property was sold, it is not a latent defect.

  • The defect must exist prior to the sale. Even if the seller was unaware of the defect at the time of sale, they are still liable for it.

Still struggling to get your head around all this? The Integri-T program, exclusive to RE/MAX, is a guarantee offered to buyers and sellers who want to protect themselves against latent defects. This unique coverage provides financial protection to buyers and sellers in the event of a claim. 

Contact your RE/MAX broker for more information.

Visit for full details.

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