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Homeowners left with hundreds of thousands in repairs after inspection failed to find mold outbreak

Home owners face extensive repairs, question home inspection
Published: Dec. 28, 2021 at 5:21 PM EST
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BOLIVIA, N.C. (WECT) - Home inspections typically provide peace of mind for new homebuyers, and are often required along with an appraisal in order to secure a mortgage; but, as one family is finding out, just because you pay for an inspection it doesn’t mean there aren’t still issues with your home.

Rachele Hennessey and her family found that out the hard way when they purchased a home back in April. It didn’t take long for them to discover something wasn’t right with the home.

“After three nights of being here, it all just crumbled. Everything — straight hopelessness. I can’t even explain to you,” Hennessey said.

Her daughter went into anaphylactic shock three nights in a row. That’s when Hennessey knew there was something off and began investigating the situation.

“We start pulling apart the walls and — the mold throughout the entire home — I was like no, there is something more than this,” she said.

She was right.

“Well, we found that it was a — from my neighbor — the house had been flooded. It was purchased as a salvaged home so it was already flooded and sold,” she said.

She said the home inspector never saw any of these problems and there was actually a large hole in the roof letting rainwater in. After firefighters responded to the home for another issue, she found out there was more.

“They got here and they told me that this house was flooded during Hurricane Florence, up to their chests. So that’s not one but two times that this house has been flooded.”

But it’s not just the fact that the house had water damage and was flooded in the past. Hennessey says the home isn’t what she was told she was buying — which was a home built in 2000. Property records show something much older.

“They have this house as a 1984 double wide for this house. All the information on this does not match the actual serial numbers underneath the home,” she said.

So, she did some digging and research of her own.

“The house is actually a 1996 champion — so not 1984 or 2000. It is a 1996.”

Hennessey hired an attorney to try and get their money back but said that was easier said than done. The attorney sent two letters on her behalf before asking for more money — money that could be spent trying to make their home habitable.

As far as the cost goes, two restoration companies offered Hennessey quotes: one was just shy of $200,000, while the other one was slightly more than that.

WECT has reached out to the inspection company to find out more about the inspection process and what is, and is not, included. So far we have not had a response, but will update this story if that changes.

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