A pair of Fort St. John realtors are pleading buyer beware over a lawsuit against them that alleges they misled and withheld information about critical defects in a rural home they sold last fall.
Stacey Goode and Kimberley MacKay filed a response to a civil claim against them in BC Supreme Court on July 3, denying a long list of allegations made against them for negligence, and breach of contract and professional duties.
“At all material times during the sale of the property, the defendants took every step to full advise the plaintiffs of the condition of the home, the valuation of the home, and the prudence of seeking their own legal representation and an independent inspection,” the response reads.
Derrick and Jolene Laychuk filed their suit against Goode and MacKay in late May, seeking damages over a $575,000 home and acreage purchase on Pine Road they bought from the two last November and say turned out to be a bad deal. After buying the home, the Laychuks allege the home had structural and water problems, roof damages, and problems with its electrical, gas, and plumbing systems.
The Laychuks allege these problems were not acknowledged to them in a property disclosure statement. They also allege they were advised against getting their own independent home inspection, in favour of trusting one done by Daniel Bastiaansen, who was hired by Goode and gave the house an overall good bill of health.
Goode and MacKay, however, refute these claims.
Their response states the Laychuks were made aware of the age of the home — estimated at 88 years old — and were advised to get an independent inspection, and to meet with Bastiaansen to review the property.
The realtors also say the home had none of the alleged defects during their eight-year ownership of the property between 2006 and 2014, but do admit a sump pump malfunction caused a flood in the basement of the home in spring 2010.
That damage, they say, was repaired by a professional restoration company hired by their insurer, and that they had no further water troubles with the home. They say this information was disclosed to the Laychuks in the property disclosure statement.
They add that the disclosure statement was not incorporated into the contract for the purchase and sale of them.
“The defendants deny the damages claimed and put the plaintiffs to the strict proof thereof,” the response reads.
“The damages claimed are excessive, too remote, and the plaintiffs have failed to mitigate.”