Purchasing a home is not only the biggest financial transaction of our lives but also a long-term lifestyle investment. One crucial factor to consider is the construction and building warranty, often overlooked. Knowing the laws related to these warranties not only helps protect our rights from potential post-purchase problems but also enhances our understanding of the seller’s responsibilities.
In this article, we will take you to understand the relevant legal matters. For the seller's liability for defects First of all, do you know that Laws regarding guarantees for new homes located in registered housing developments There are differences with second-hand houses or houses that are not in a registered project. Therefore, we would like to separate it into two parts as follows.
NEW HOME WARRANTIES IN REGISTERED HOUSING PROJECTES
Seller's guarantee under the land allocation project
The warranty from the seller under a registered land allocation project must be in a project legally permitted for registration. The seller must be a licensed developer, and the buyer is the one directly contracting with the project owner.
Therefore, if you buy a new home that is not under a licensed allocation project, or a second-hand home from the previous owner, whether in a registered project or not, the warranty laws for land allocation do not apply to the seller in this case.
Even though the law does not directly mention the seller’s warranty for defects, the Land Allocation Act B.E. 2543 (2000) authorizes the concerned officials to set standard contracts for buying and selling allocated land. This is to be used as a standard template for contracts between licensed developers and land buyers.
The buying and selling contract (with buildings) drafted by the officials includes terms about the seller’s liability for defects. It states that once the seller transfers the property and buildings to the buyer, they are liable for damages and defects that devalue the building or diminish its suitability for use, as follows:
The buyer must notify the seller in writing, and the seller must rectify within the timeframe specified in the contract and complete the repairs within a reasonable period. If the seller fails to start repairs within the specified time, or delays, or in urgent cases where the delay could cause significant damage, the buyer has the right to make repairs themselves or have someone else do it. The seller is then liable for the costs incurred by the buyer.
Warranty as per Contract
While making the contract, if the developer as seller and the consumer as the buyer agree on warranties for the building structure, components, or fences and walls different from what the land allocation law and standard contracts specify, the agreement will have different implications:
-> If the seller’s warranty is “better” than the law and standard contract, this advantageous agreement for the buyer as a consumer is enforceable.
-> If the seller's warranty agreement is "lower than" the land allocation law and the form Contract standards set That part of the agreement will have no effect at all. It is considered that there is no agreement between themselves in that part. About that guarantee, it is considered that the seller agrees to guarantee as specified by the standard form of the contract. In other words, it is a legal guarantee.
SECOND-HAND HOMES or OTHER TYPES OF HOMES
The seller's guarantee in this case applies to both purchasing a new home, even if it is a home in a project. However, the project was not registered as allocated. Land Allocation Act 2000 or new houses outside the project or second-hand houses whether or not they are in a housing project
This guarantee is also governed by the Civil and Commercial Code This requires the seller to provide a warranty for a period of 1 year from the date the buyer sees the damage or defect. (This is different from the case of insurance according to the land allocation law and the standard contract which specifies that the insurance period starts from the date of ownership transfer) with the following criteria.
The house is damaged and defective to the point of deteriorating its suitability for use. But if the defect does not cause the house to depreciate or deteriorate its suitability for normal use or according to the contract, the seller will not be liable.
The defect must "pre-exist" or "while" making the sales contract or at the time of delivering the house. If it occurs "after" delivery, the seller is not liable. Because it is not a defect within the meaning of this law
However Although some cases fall into the nature of defects within the meaning of the law. The law also provides for exemptions from sellers' liability. This makes it possible that even though there is a defect, the seller is not liable as follows:
Results of the seller delivering a house that is in a defective condition.