Home Buying in Los Angeles>Question Details

Julie Anders…, Home Buyer in Los Angeles, CA

If a property says it is a trust sale and the seller will not provide a termite report, does that mean that

Asked by Julie Anderson, Los Angeles, CA Sat Feb 2, 2008

that can't be a contingency? Is it suspicious or SOP for trust sales? Thanks.

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Hello Maeve, Yes, it's true that the termite report may not be required. It's a decision made by the seller(s). But at what point are you in your transaction? Did you already sign a contract, and if so, what was agreed upon concerning a termite report and any termite work. If you're negotiating still over the terms, then, as stated in the first answer, a seller may sell a property as-is without providing a report, or doing any of the pest control repairs. But a lender may require the work be done before the close of escrow, however. A termite company may provide a report at no cost, and even if they charge $75 dollars, it's not a huge expense outlay to you to obtain one, and well worth it to find out the condition of the property during your buyer investigation period, which is your primary contingency period. Even if the seller were to pay for and provide you with a termite report, it could well be within your own best interests to hire a company of your choosing and obtain an additional report. It is not unheard of for termite reports to differ in their findings, and ultimately, costs.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 2, 2008
There is no reason to be suspicious. There is reason to be thorough in your contract and inspections. The seller will probably not provide much information, mostly because they have limited info and were not residents there. You can certainly make any inspections contingencies in your offer.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 17, 2008
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Brick, NJ
Hello Maeve,

Many trust sales that I see do not pay for a termite report. This is because many of them are in poor condition and are priced well to reflect that. That doesn't mean you can't make it part of your inspections. You have a right to a termite inspection but you my have to pay for it yourself. If the property has been on the market a while I would ask for them to pay for the termite inspection and the work it may need.

Monique Carrabba
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 17, 2008
Hi Maeve,

An "AS IS" sale simply means that a seller is not willing to pay for any repairs or make any concessions. You should always have a physical investigation contingency in your contract with "AS IS" sales. This way you can get an inspector in to tell you the condition of the house especially important systems like A/C, plumbing, roof. If the inspector finds items that are very costly or that you are uncomfortable with, you can back out of the contract.

Even though, the seller is marketing the property in AS IS condition, it doesn't stop you from asking the seller to make repairs or give a price concession. Your agent should be able to guide you accordingly.

The seller though is under no obligations to pay for any repairs.

Having a Physical Inspection contingency will give you a choice to either go forward and close the sale or to back out.

Good luck!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 2, 2008
Just means that seller is exempt as a trust from some disclosures. You still should have an inspection contingency in your contract to allow you to get termite and any other inspections you need. Liz
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 2, 2008
Beyond the replies about termite reports, is the seller responsible for old kitchen equipment such as dishwasher, stove. What about electrical 2-plug versus 3-plug outlets?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 14, 2013
Everything on the market is as is if you don't ask for anything. Your realtor should get you all the inspections you need. If the seller doesn't provide a certain inspection, you are able to order whichever ones you would like.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 4, 2008
I have specialized in Probate and Trust Sales for over 25 years. Often in Probate and Trust Sales the seller will not provide a termite report. That does NOT mean that you cannot do your own termite report. Selling something "as is" is not the same as selling something without a contingency.
Every situation is different and you need a real estate professional to guide you through your purchase.
The Sanborn Team would be happy to assist you. Please feel free to call me at 310-777-2858
Web Reference: http://www.sanbornteam.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Feb 3, 2008
Maeve, yes, you can ask for seller to pay repairs, sometimes they will say "yes" even if they said no to begin with, but be prepared for a "no". Basically, you can make an offer saying you want to find out the dollar amount on the repairs before you removed all your contingencies. But really, you can do that anyway without having to say that to the seller up front, because the basic pre-printed terms allow you to cancel the transaction without giving a reason and without losing your deposit, AS LONG AS you cancel within your buyer investigation period, which gives you that right. This way you have the opportunity to find out everything you want to based on your physical inspections, and then decide if you're proceeding with escrow or not. Please let me know if I can help you personally by calling me a 562-896-2609. I go over all these clauses and buyer protections when I first begin with with a buyer so that you understand these issues before putting in an offer.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 2, 2008
Maeve, When the offer is written, state in the contract that the purchase will be AS IS subject to inspections. That means if there is something that comes up, there's still room to negotiate. Or you can state that you will purchase the home AS IS with the exception of Section I of the termite inspection. The seller doesn't have to repair the items up front, they can give you a credit for the repairs in escrow and the termite company or the company who makes the repairs will be paid from those funds. So yes you can ask for a credit for repairs up to whatever dollar amount seems fair. Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 2, 2008
Julia and Cheryl -- thanks for your answers. I have not made an offer yet, but what I do not understand is how to make an offer on an "as is" sale. Can you, for instance, make a contingency that your offer is only good if the amount of repairs found in the inspections does not exceed a certain dollar amount? I know that in a regular sale you can negotiate an problems found, but how does this work if the property is "as is"?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 2, 2008
It means that the original owner died (hopefully not at the property) and the home is in probate. The trustee could be a family member, attorney etc.... When an offer is received then the trustee may have to consult with the heirs about accepting that offer. The sale is being conducted and sold in AS IS condition. Here in California, buyers are responsible for conducting their own investigations of the property, and a termite inspection is one of those investigations. There is nothing wrong with not providing a termite report. Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 2, 2008
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