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How Ready Are You to Buy a Home?

Determining Your Dream Home and Finding It!

Factory Built Homes Are Worth a Look

Purchase Manufactured Homes with FHA Loan

How to Buy a Foreclosed Home

Pros and Cons of Corner Lots

Know the Neighborhood Before You Buy

Tune in to an Open House on the Radio

Finding a Qualified Broker or Agent

Shopping for a Loan and Choosing a Lender

How to Improve Your Credit

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Making an Offer and Signing Contracts

Cancel Your Contract in 3 Days

Understanding the Closing/Settlement Process

Choosing Home Inspection and Settlement Professionals

Double Check Your New Home - The Walkthrough

Know Your Consumer Rights

Seniors Have Many Housing Opportunities

Preparing for the Big Day -- Relocating Moving

Make Your Home Your Castle - Cost Effective Redecorating Ideas



There are several things you should know.

Three Typical Types of Warranties

Here is a brief introduction:

Warranties are promises or guarantees concerning the quality, acceptability, performance or otherwise worthiness of a particular item, product, service or act. A warranty also guarantees that the buyer can get action from the seller (or the seller's agent) in the event of a problem.

There are three typical types of warranties when it comes to homes. These are the:

  • Implied Warranty

  • Express Warranty

  • Imposed Warranty

Implied Warranties:

They apply to new construction. The implied warranty applies to new construction homes. Law imposes this warranty. It states that the builder or seller be held accountable even though the no written promises are included in the contract.

The implied promises refer to the fact that consumers buying new homes should be able to assume that the home is built in a "good and workmanlike manner" and that the home will be "reasonably fit" for its intended purposes. That means that if the roof caves in two months into the life of the home, the builder has to replace it and repair the damage caused by the cave-in despite the fact that there was no clause in your contract to that effect. Homes must be "livable" to be sold. If the house becomes unlivable within the first year (normally), the builder is responsible.

The problem with this type of warranty, as with all warranties, is interpretation. What defines "good workmanlike manner?" Would "reasonably fit" mean the same thing to you as it does to the seller?

The best thing to do in this case is to call the builder first. See if he is willing to make the repairs. If not, seek legal counsel.

Express Warranties:

A little more to work with. Express warranties are a little more stable. They are specifically written into the contract and apply equally to new homes as well as older ones.

An express warranty is a promise or guarantee from the seller. It may be a statement to the effect that "all mechanical and electrical systems are in good working order at the time of closing." If you close on the house in the morning and have water running down the walls that night, you can seek action against the seller.

All express warranties should be written in clear language. Either the seller or the buyer can add them. They can cover any time period you wish. You can say for two years, five years or one year. That is up to the two parties involved. Obviously, for the buyer, the longer time frame the better.

Express warranties can also cover items not normally covered under the implied warranties. For example, they can cover the quality of the weather-stripping in the house. They should always include a way to seek remedy for problems that occur.

The remedy should include contact information, name, number, etc. It should also state the terms in which repairs will be made.

Imposed Warranties:

These have legal authority...and outweigh all legal mumbo-jumbo! Imposed warranties are those that are imposed by law. They cannot be negated even with contract language. They are really more laws, regulations and restrictions than warranties. They apply to the house itself.

Imposed warranties will vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. They are pulled from things like local building codes.

Implied and imposed warranties normally only apply to new construction. This is one reason it is extremely important to search the title to make sure you really are the first owner of the home. Some unscrupulous builders sell the home to a buyer who immediately sells it back to the builder for resale. This prevents you from using any of the new construction warranties.

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