The water lines are faulty in my new home, so should the inspection have caught that?
I am unable to provide a legal opinion on the merits of a claim. Real estate disclosure laws vary by local area. Generally, a realtor isn't liable for house defects unless a warranty was provided or they knew of the defect. Cases from a few states hold that the broker is not liable for incorrect information provided by the seller if the broker has no basis to know or suspect the information is inaccurate. The prudent broker should ask the seller to provide written information and documentation if it exists. Information provided to the buyer may include the written qualification that the broker is not warranting the accuracy of such information. Often the real estate disclosure statement will insulate the broker from liability. However, not all property conditions or representations are covered by the standard disclosure statement.
Whether you can hold the home inspector responsible for missed defects depends upon whether the problems were visually discernible and within the scope of the inspection. The answer depends partly on the terms of the contract for the inspection and what was covered by such inspection. If not addressed in the contract, the court will judge whether such a defect should have been discovered based on the circumstances involved and inspection industry standards. Home inspectors routinely disclaim liability for property defects that are located below ground, under slab floors, beneath insulation, within walls, behind personal property, inside fixtures and appliances, or for any reason whatever, not fully exposed and readily accessible at the time of the inspection.