Real Estate Glossary

What is Caveat?

Caveat emptor is a Latin phrase that means "let the buyer beware." It's a legal principle that's often applied to real estate transactions, and it means that buyers are responsible for checking the condition of a property before they purchase it.

In the context of real estate, caveat emptor means that buyers need to be diligent in their inspections of a property. They should hire a professional inspector to look for any structural or mechanical problems, and they should also check for things like water damage, mold, and pest infestations.

If a buyer fails to properly inspect a property and later discovers a problem, they may not have any legal recourse against the seller. The principle of caveat emptor puts the burden of due diligence on the buyer, so it's important to do your homework before making a purchase.

Of course, this doesn't mean that sellers can misrepresent the condition of a property. They still have an obligation to disclose any known defects or issues. But buyers can't rely solely on the seller's word.