SW Legal studies in Business

Buyer of Land Smaller Than Advertised Has No Recourse
Description Appeals court affirmed that the buyers of land advertised as 280 acres who learned after the sale it was 20 acres less, had no cause of action against the seller since the contract and deed did not specify acreage, but listed the property boundaries. There was no evidence of intent to deceive, so the contract stands.
Topic Real and Personal Property
Key Words Real Estate; Size of Parcel; Warranty
C A S E   S U M M A R Y
Facts The Kuehls bought land from the estate of Meyer through Petersen Realty Company. When advertised, the property was listed as "to be taken from the abstract" and asserted to be 280 acres. After the land described in the abstract was conveyed by warranty deed, which did not state the number of acres, the Kuehls learned that there were 260 acres. They sued for breach of contract, breach of warranty, negligence and fraud. The trial court dismissed the suit. The Kuehls appealed.
Decision

Affirmed. The entire agreement of the parties did not specify the number of acres; the Kuehls received marketable title to the real estate described in the agreement. The Kuehls did not investigate the property, did not have a survey done, nor did they check with the county assessor or treasurer about the acreage in the tract. There were no false representations in the public record. The contract for sale and the deed were proper and agreed upon by the parties. There was no evidence that the seller knew the land was not 280 acres since it had not been surveyed since 1948, so there was no intent to deceive.

Citation Kuehl v. Meyer, 2001 WL 1579967 (Ct. App., Iowa, 2001)

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