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Pier to Pier Brokers Real Estate

The information source for local LA real estate

By Blake Roberts | Broker in Manhattan Beach, CA

What a Home Seller Must Disclose to their buyer

Recent legal decisions and new legislation provide that you, the seller have a responsibility for revealing to your real estate agent(s) the true condition of your property.

The concept of selling property “as is”, with the buyer assuming all responsibility for determining the property condition, is not acceptable in the present marketplace. The seller must always disclose the known condition of their property to the buyer.

Mr. and Ms. Seller
Having lived in your property for a while, most likely, you have become accustomed to the peculiar conditions that may have developed. But for the buyer, that peculiarity may be more than an inconvenience. It may be an irritant, which the buyer cannot tolerate.

It is important for you to review the condition of your property with your agent, and take special note of any problems on the Disclosure Statement. Civil Code Section 1102 requires that the seller provide their buyer with a completed “Real Estate Transfer Disclosure Statement.”

A basic assumption on every sale is that the house and systems in the house are functional. For example, the roof will keep out the rain and sun, the hot water heater will provide hot water, and the heater will provide heat. If it is known that any of the systems do not function properly, such facts should be included in the purchase agreement and acknowledged by the Buyer.

It is required that the seller disclose any knowledge they have of environmental hazards in the home or areas such as asbestos or pollutants.

The consequences of lying to, or failing to disclose to a buyer can be severe. If a buyer can prove that the seller and/or real estate agent knew, or should have known about a problem, the buyer may be awarded damages in a court of law. 

Mr. and Ms. Buyer
If you have specific concerns or issues that come up during your home purchase, have your agent ask the seller to provide written explinations. 

Questions like the following are all normal:

  • do the neighbors always park their camper (or boat) in front of the house?
  • how often does the neighbor reherse with his band
  • any pending tram/rail/tram developement that could impact the property
  • do the streets ever flood
  • almost anything else that is a concern to you
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