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[b] CHECKLIST: Purchase of new residence Client ________________________ Date of Interview______________

The property

Location of property: Lot and block number; street address Tract house or custom home
- -If custom home, did client provide plans and specifications to builder
[If client provided plans for house, then it will be necessary to determine whether defects are due to faulty design or construction or both.]

Who is the seller


The contract/ representations

When was the earnest money contract signed Were any waivers contained in the contract Who was the listing broker/agent Who were the co-brokers/agents Were any other licensed agents involved
[If a licensed real estate agent or broker is involved, one source of recovering damages assessed against the agent or broker is the Real Estate Recovery Fund. See 5.23 infra.]

-Did contract permit/require property inspections; if yes, who


inspected property
[If property inspection was poorly performed and caused damages, one source of recovering damages assessed against the property inspector is the Real Estate Inspection Recovery Fund. See 5.24 infra. ]

Was the seller also the builder How much earnest money was paid What representations were made about the house, by whom and when Did client see advertising; if yes, where and when -Was client advised in writing that any information given to
client was obtained from a third party
[If information was obtained from third party, the person making the representation may have a defense under DTPA 17.506.]

Purchase information

Date of closing and closing agent Purchase price Downpayment Written warranties given HOW/HOME Warranty given -Did client receive a Certificate of Participation or other
similar evidence of coverage
[See 5.21 infra, for a review of the elements of a claim under a homeowners warranty or insurance claim.]

Who is the mortgage company Type of mortgage: fixed or adjustable rate Interest rate/term of mortgage Monthly payments: how much principal, interest, insurance, taxes Are payments current - If not, how delinquent - -Have any demand letters, notice of acceleration, or notice of
foreclosure been received
[If client is delinquent, upon receipt of notice letter, the prospective defendant may file suit against client in an inconvenient forum. Consideration should thus be given to a preemptive common law action to fix venue and to insure that the client is the plaintiff.]

Construction

When was the house built -Was house purchased (contract signed) before construction was
complete

If construction was in progress, - did client inspect property - did any person inspect property with or on behalf of client - what defects, if any, were noticed during construction Were there any delays in construction: weather, strike, etc. Who were the subcontractors on the job
[If a list of subcontractors was not provided by the builder, one should be requested from the builder since subcontractors who actually did the faulty work are equally liable to the plaintiff.]

Improvements made by client: description, value


Construction defects in house

When were the defects first noticed


[The discovery rule will avoid the statute of limitations only if the client exercised reasonable diligence. See DTPA 17.565.]

-How were the defects noticed, e.g., did client simply see them
or was there some event problems in the house that prompted an investigation of

What are all of the defects/symptoms of defects


[TEX. PROP. CODE 27.004(a) suggests the need to include all defects in the notice letter to insure that damages can be recovered for all of the defects.]

What are the workmanship and materials defects (one-year warranty) What are the defects in the plumbing, electrical, heating and
air-conditioning delivery systems (two-year warranty)

What are the defects in the foundations and major structural


components (ten-year warranty)
[TRCCA 426.006(a) requires SIRP request no later than 90 days after the applicable warranty periods expires.]

Notice of defects to builder

Has builder been notified of defects in writing Have defects been discussed verbally with builder; if so, when Has builder inspected property What was builders response to the notice of defects Did builder make an offer to repair or pay for repairs; if so, - Was the offer sufficiently detailed - Has an independent expert examined the offer - Will offered repairs cure the defect(s)
[The offer to repair should be compared to the requirements of TEX. PROP. CODE 27.004(b). See TEXAS CONSUMER LITIGATION 2D 2.15.]

Has the client requested an SIRP for the Residential Construction


Commission

Has an SIRP inspection been performed or scheduled Has an SIRP report been issued Has an SIRP appeal been commenced

[Refer to TRCCA Chapter 428 for the various deadlines for requesting an SIRP, issuing an SIRP report and appealing an SIRP determination.]

Repairs made

Have any repairs been made; if so, by whom Were repairs effective Who paid for repairs
Expectations of client

What does client expect to accomplish through litigation


Explanations to client

Anticipated cost of litigation Attorney-client agreement Requirements of discovery, assistance with case Required attendance at depositions, trial Outcome of litigation is unpredictable
Documents to obtain from client
[Client should be advised to bring all documents that in any way relate to transaction; however, the following list is illustrative of the type of documents that must be provided if they exist.]

Advertising seen Point of sale brochures or documents Earnest money contract Surveys of land Warranties, warranty brochures, certificate of participation Deed, deed of trust -Any documents provided to or signed by client in connection with
sale

Closing statement Letters to or from anyone involved in transaction Reports of experts All documents reflecting losses from transaction Repair estimates or invoices