Comprou uma casa há menos de 10 anos Conheça a garantia de imóveis usados

Bought a house less than 10 years ago? Learn about the warranty for used properties.

If you have bought a property less than 10 years ago and encountered a defect, know that there is a warranty. The warranty for used properties applies in cases where non-conformity was detected after the purchase of the house, at the signing of the deed. Learn how the law works in this article.

11 Aug 20234 min

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If you are looking for a house, have questions related to the acquisition or sale of real estate, turn to the real estate services of Casa no Minuto. And in case you have doubts regarding housing credit, also count on the credit intermediation of Poupança no Minuto. To better understand what the law on the warranty of used real estate implies, we explain next.

The law protects property owners who detect defects after purchase.

Since January 2022, a law (Decree-Law No. 84/2021) has been in force, which determines a warranty period for purchased properties, equivalent to 10 years. In other words, if an owner has purchased a house and, within this period, detects nonconformities in the construction and structure of the property, they can demand repair from the builder/seller.

This is when writing of purchase and sale of urban buildings for residential purposes between professionals (individual or collective, public or private, operating in the commercial, industrial, artisanal or professional sector) and consumers (individual not operating in the commercial, industrial, artisanal or professional sector).

So, the professional must respond if any nonconformity related to structural constructive elements is detected over the 10 years following the contract signature.

What are the covered nonconformities?

However, there are specific nonconformities covered by the law, related to structural construction elements to be claimed. The issue concerns quality, safety, habitability, environmental protection, and functionality characteristics, which can be found in the housing technical data sheet.

According to the law, the defects that can be claimed are related to nonconformity:

  • From the professional's description, lacking qualities of the good that they have identified as a sample or model;
  • For specific use for which the consumer intends the property, or not suitable for the usual uses of goods of the same type;
  • Of the usual qualities and performance in goods of the same type, expected by the consumer regarding the nature of the good and identification of specific characteristics indicated by the professional, builder or representative.

If any of these conformities are identified in the real estate property, the consumer can demand that it be repaired or replaced, at no cost to them. Then, the professional must replace the goods within a reasonable time, according to the nature of the conformity, and without causing inconvenience to the consumer.

How long can I demand the replacement of nonconformities?

From the moment the nonconformity is detected, the consumer has a maximum of one year to report the defect to the professional. This is provided it is within the 10 years in which the warranty can be activated.

Within this period, the consumer has the right to repair, replacement, price reduction, or contract cancellation.

If you do not report the defect completely, or within the deadline for doing so, the professional is no longer responsible for resolving the nonconformity.

How to activate the property guarantee?

To activate the warranty of the property, in case of detection of noncompliance, the professional must send a registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt to the professional or builder, referring to the detected defects.

You must also do so by email, with proof of delivery, as well as a read receipt. This is so that you have evidence, for legal purposes, of having reported the nonconformity, obliging the professional to fulfill their obligation of replacement.

Since there is no defined deadline for the repair or replacement of defects, only the indication of a reasonable deadline, you should mention a time limit for the process in the letter and email.

Can the professional refuse the request?

Yes, the professional can refuse the request. However, in this case, the consumer can resort to judicial pathway, through peace courts and tribunals.

If you are within the warranty period and the seller refuses to proceed with the replacement of the real estate, there may be legal consequences.

But be aware that, to proceed with a legal action, you only have three years starting from the date you complained about the defect. After this period, legally you can no longer move forward with a lawsuit.

If you have doubts regarding buying a house, Casa no Minuto can help you; and if your questions are related to housing credit, Poupança no Minuto is also available to assist you. Through free, fast, and reliable services, they solve any real estate or financing challenge you may encounter.

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