The terms “patent defect” and “latent defect” are important in real estate. A patent defect is a flaw in the structure or property that is plainly evident during a reasonable inspection. The general rule is when the defect is obvious, like a cracked window, the seller has no obligation to point it out. A latent defect is a flaw in the structure, land or title of a property that is hidden and not easily discoverable during a reasonable inspection. Sellers must disclose the existence of all known latent defects in writing, especially if they are serious or “material” like an unregistered easement, before the buyer makes an offer. If they don’t and it can be proved they knew of the defect, the buyer may rescind the contract and pursue additional action for damages. The seller’s agent is under the same obligation. They must disclose in writing to the buyers’ agents any material latent defects before the buyer makes an offer.