In a real estate sale and purchase, there are some voluntary disclosures obligated on the part of sellers. These disclosures must not be taken casually as the impact could lead to serious consequences even after the date of closing. This disclosure could mainly be associated with the following besides others:
Latent or material latent defects– The material latent defects must be disclosed by the seller. If such defects in the listed property are known to the Real Estate Agent or brokerage, then it becomes their obligation to bring such defects to the attention of the prospective buyers.
Stigmatized property– It amounts to disgrace or factors negatively affecting the values of property. These factors may include incidence of murder, suicide in or on the property, or purported existence of ghost. These kinds of situations must be disclosed.
Existence of UFI (Urea formaldehyde foam insulation) – If existed in the property, and known to the sellers, must be brought to the notice of the buyers to avoid any future litigation.
Grow House-illegal growing of marijuana or growing of any banned substance. Such activities typically are associated with residential homes. Some noticeable indications of the house used for grow house could be: excessive moisture, rusting in the furnace and flues and chimneys, unusual staining on walls and floors, bath room alterations, unusual smells, utility line alterations, etc. There are specific regulations and law governing to these kinds of situations and the real estate agents should be careful while processing Agreement of purchase and sale.
Termites: If the property has history of termite issues.
Major repairs– Could be to the foundation, roof or structure of the property.
Water damage and mold– If the home has had a leaky roof, a flooded basement or dampness and mold in certain areas
Although it is not mandatory requirement or selling obligation on the part of the seller to get his home inspected by a certified home inspector, however, as part of good selling strategy and to avoid future litigation it might provide relief to the seller. Any issues pointed out by the inspector, get such observations attended to fix and disclose and let people know what you have done to resolve such issues. It makes you like a serious, honest and conscientious seller.
From legal point of view, the sellers’ strategy must be to avoid any future litigation costing thousands of dollars and let the issues must be disclosed to the prospective buyers which are materially important to decide the market value of the property.
(Please note, these contents of the newsletter are in brief and only for general information and cannot be construed as legal advice. If you have any real estate relating transaction coming up, please contact me in confidence to discuss in detail)