Will this be consider a cosmetic defect?

In many real estate sale contract, the buyer can built in a certain % of repair limit and require the seller to fix problems.
Usually the contract will state that it includes things not in working conditions. Meaning AC not working, or roof leaks etc...
It is pretty obvious a nail hole or a peeling wall paper is not included.
What about a wood deck where 1/3 of it "caved" into the ground? It is a low spot seems all the water is directed there. Don't know if it is a sink hole or not being in Miami Florida. Is this also considered a "cosmetic" defect? The agent seem to think so. I am not so sure. The wood deck is definitely "NOT in working condition" but is the wood deck part of the "structure"?
Also if I buy this property and decide to fix this, can I call my home owner's insurance to fix this, or am I stucked with this since it was a "pre-existing" condition when I bought the property?
Thanks in advance,
O
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Simply write a stipulation in the contract that the deck must first be repaired.

If it happened to the previous owners as a single incident (tree falling on it for example), *they* may have a claim. You wouldn't.
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says...

If the damage is readily visible, you'd better check with your insurance agent before buying the house -- your insurance company might decline to insure it if they think the deck presents an unreasonable risk of either liability or property damage claims.
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orangetrader wrote:

I would not consider the home, until I had a definitive answer about that. You may find your kitchen sinking into the hole a couple of years after you buy it. I had a neighbor with just such a problem. It turned out that the home was built over a private dump. After the deck, came the kitchen to the point the ice maker leaked because the frig was not level.

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Joseph Meehan

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It is a structural defect not cosmetic, no the insurance co does not pay for maintenance, they never did. Get bids on all repairs yourself and the soil if you are worried about a sink hole or bad soil. You would be better off repairing it and deduct it from the price plus a bit extra. Then you will know the repair was done right not just a hack job. It could be as logical as untreated wood rotted or as complex as a sink hole . Get some pros out nobody here can come by today.
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I totally agree with this idea, repair it yourself, if you ask them to fix it they will do it in the cheapest way possible. right in an allowance into you sale contract and get it done right!

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The contract only has to mention things that are not reasonably obvious to the buyer. A collapsing deck probably is is pretty obvious. You are free to require them to fix it as part of your purchase offer. They may have presumed a buyer would do so, and have priced the house accordingly. Only one way to find out.

Insurance may or may not cover a deck falling into a sinkhole, but it will certainly not cover a deck that had done so prior to your purchase.

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