Threat Posed by Pit Bulls Should Have Been Noted

Question:  At the time we purchased our Laveen home, the seller said that there were no neighborhood problems. After we moved into our home we learned that two houses down from us there are two pit bulls. A neighbor told us that these pit bulls have gotten loose several times, and on one occasion these pit bulls killed our seller’s cat and terrorized our seller’s 12-year-old son. The neighbor also said that our seller told him that the presence of these pit bulls in the neighborhood was a major factor in selling his home. We have two girls that are 4 and 6 years old. We are now concerned about living in this neighborhood. If we move and lose money on the sale of our home, does the seller have liability to us?

Answer: Yes. Both Arizona law and the Seller’s Property Disclosure Statement used in most Arizona residential transactions require disclosure of any neighborhood nuisance — for example, nasty neighbor or partying college students — or any other material and adverse fact a reasonable buyer would want to know. If the presence of these two pit bulls was the reason that the seller decided to move, disclosure by the seller was required.

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