Home Selling in Whiting>Question Details

Kgfleming, Home Seller in Whiting, NJ

What contract provisions are legally binding when a house is offered for sale in "as-is"condition ?

Asked by Kgfleming, Whiting, NJ Fri Aug 28, 2009

If a home is listed for sale in "As-is" condition does the contract provisions referring to inspectionclauses and condition of appliances remain in full force or does a disclaimer need to be added restating the "as-is" condition of home?

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Kg: A contract is a contract. What it says you can or must do, you can do. What it says others can do or must do for you, that's what you can get. Most New Jersey contracts allow the right of inspection and the right of the seller to remediate defects, as-is or not. After all, a house is a large and somewhat mysterious place, even to professional inspectors. Just what is behind those walls, anyway? A small repair or a small credit MAY keep a deal together.

Bottom line then, with ANY contract. Know what its says and what it means. If you are not sure, if there are conflicting clauses, if you want something "a little bit different,” consult legal counsel. I believe there are a bunch of people anxious to help you out, for a fee of course.

Now you also have very kind advice from people in Illinois and North Carolina. They are foolish enough to waste their time. Don't let them waste yours. There are plenty of experienced agents in New Jersey who can steer you in the right direction. Laura and Jeanne have proven themselves in many responses. They are very good on this one as well. I can't speak for or against the others.

Bill Holt
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 28, 2009
Although this is an "as-is" sale if the property has an underground heating oil tank it is important to have the tank and soil around the tank evaluated. If the tank is found to be leaking and the soil is contaminated a "spill number" is assigned by the state of New Jersey and the current owner is responsible to have the site remediated. Even if the tank is found not to be leaking you can purchase tank insurance that will pay up to $100,000. If after you move in and you decide to remove the tank New Jersey will give you$3000 to remove and install a new tank. The grant of $3000 should cover most of the cost.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 28, 2009
Some one answered this and suggested that the buyer have a well test done. In New Jersey the State requires the seller to have the well tested. You are not allowed to sell without the well being tested period.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 28, 2009
Hi,
I am not sure how your contracts are written in NJ, so your attorney is your best resource for getting the legally most correct answer. In my experience in my area, let's say I am working with a buyer who makes an offer on an "AS IS' property...... the understanding is that the Seller/Owner is not willing to negotiate anything based on a potential inspection, although it never hurts to try - the answer can only be no!
whether offered as is or not, the buyer has the right to have an inspection done at buyers expense and then
the buyer after he actually knows a bit more about the condition of the home, can make the educated decision if he wants to proceed with the purchase contract or if he wants to get out of it, based on the inspection results...

And the decision heavily will depend on the originally negotiated purchase price, and the kind of potential problems the inspector found. Often the as is, is related to minor items, that add up though, like refinishing hardwood flooring, or new carpeting, new appliances, new countertop, new windows etc., but if those items have been included in the originally negotiated purchase price, then it may be ok to continue, but if
with the inspector one finds major problems cracks in the foundation, mold, new roof, new furnace new A/C
a lot of more expensive items that were not clear when making the offer, then potentially getting out of the contract based on the inspection is a better way to go.

But always always, make sure that the contract as is or not includes the right of the buyer to have an inspection during the A/I period given in the contract for inspection and attorney approval.

I hope this answers your question even though you are the seller....
As is or not the buyer can have an inspection and can during the A/I period get themselves out of the contract!

Take care and all the best to you.
Edith Karoline YourRealtor4Life!
& Your Chicago Connection
EdithSellsHomes@gmail.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 28, 2009
You always have a right as a buyer, according to your contract terms, to have all inspections made on any homes-including short sales and foreclosures, and to cancel the sale if the conditions are not acceptable. Generally speaking all homes are sold "as-is" but there may be negotiating of the price if certain major repairs or conditions exist.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 28, 2009
I encourage my buyers to do all inspections, including well testing and a home inspection even if the home is listed for sale "as is, buyer responsible for all certifications". The buyer can then have an additional contractual provision added that states inspections are for informational purposes only. I also encourage buyers to limit their liability for home repairs needed for a Certificate of Occupancy or to clear unclosed building permits, well pump and equipment repair and septic system repair, among other things. I also document the items included in the sale.

This is not legal advice, so be sure to get the advice of an attorney.

Laura Giannotta
Keller Williams Realty - Atlantic Shore
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 28, 2009
Hi there - I advise buyers to retain their rights and protection of the inspection contingency in all cases. Even in cases where "as is" is clear in the listing and the contract that follows, when it comes to inspection the buyer has the right to ask, and the seller has the right to respond. Specifying "as is" and/or dollar limits for repairs can provide a good framework and boundaries for the inspection negotiation. The inspection clause and any parameters set offers guidelines for negotiation and also gives either party an "out". In terms of the specifics of legal enforceability, you need to consult your attorney.

Good luck,
Jeannie Feenick
"Unwavering Commitment to Service"
Search the MLS at http://www.feenick.com
Web Reference: http://www.feenick.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 28, 2009
In our area of North Carolina, buying "As-is" you can still have your home inspections and have a maximum repair estimate that will allow you to get out of the contract and get your earnest money back, IF the repairs required are GREATER than the contract calls for. Buying "As-is" you are on notice that the seller will do NO REPAIRS AT ALL, therefore you would not present the seller with a repair request. Usually it is just noted on the contract 'buyer acknowledges as-is condition'.

D.M.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 28, 2009
You are still allowed your inspections. As-is means the seller will not make any repairs even if you find a problem in the inspection. You do have the right to walk away and have your earnest money returned to you if the contract is written up to say you want that right..
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 28, 2009
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