Real Estate Wholesaling

Real Estate Sellers: Be Aware of Property Disclosure Laws

Expertise:
22 Articles Written
Background of Property Disclosure Laws In the wake of the consumer-rights movement and the increasing influence of realtor organizations around the country, many states began to draft and implement property disclosure laws in the 1980’s that were designed to protect buyers of residential properties. The goal was to protect uninformed and inexperienced buyers in an [...] View the full article: Real Estate Sellers: Be Aware of Property Disclosure Laws on The BiggerPockets Blog. This content is Copyright © 2017 BiggerPockets, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Want more articles like this?

Create an account today to get BiggerPocket's best blog articles delivered to your inbox

Sign up for free
    Beachbum
    Replied about 12 years ago
    Sadly, many sellers choose to try and avoid responsibility by simply indicating IDNK (I do not know). For forum readers, education is the key. YOU need to be diligent, and ask questions. Don’t accept IDNK! If the seller resists, lower your offer accordingly, assuming the worst.
    Dallas Homes
    Replied about 12 years ago
    Great Article. I think this will espicaly help for sale by owners, who are trying to save money, however don’t really understand real estate law.
    Kathy Helbig
    Replied over 11 years ago
    Thanks for some great information. Sellers need to realize the enormous consequences that can affect them when issues arise that have not been disclosed. Rather it be intentional or by omission.
    Patti
    Replied about 10 years ago
    Are disclosure laws the same when you purchase an estate home?
    John Barney
    Replied about 10 years ago
    I need some advice…..I am aware of caveat emptor, however we have bought some property advertised as waterfront …lakefront property..when we looked at the property the wk youaterfront was at the property setback and at 2800ft.After building a home ,weekend place we discovered in a few months the lake was receding quite a bit.We asked the realtor about it. He told us that it was normal evaporation of the lake,especially because of the California drought.we believed him……This lake we found out is actually a agriculture resevoir and farmers can use the water up until October each year. By june of the following year there is no lake……it totally drys up and you can actually walk across it for more than a mile to the otherside. We are furious…..what can we do about this that should have been discloed to us ????than
    Terry
    Replied over 9 years ago
    Does a right of way access accross the sellers property need to be disclosed under the diclosure law?
    Ms. Stolte
    Replied almost 9 years ago
    Quick story. Last week of Dec, I moved into a rental house purchased by my parents. Just as I was finished moving in the last batch of my stuff after two weeks, the furnace started having problems. When I say problems, I mean serious stuff, it was starting to explode!. It had to be shut down and then it left toxic soot and fumes all over the house. I had just moved in so I decided I’d organize and then see about the mess and besides I needed to make sure my former apartment was ready by the first so I’d get my deposit back. About week later, I happened to look online to find tips about cleaning up the mess. I happened to find out by accident browsing that I needed to have professional cleaners come over and clean it up. Which lead to me finding out it was unsafe to stay in my new rental house. MY goodness….a new rental house that has been recently inspected and is a health hazard to be in as soon as I move in?. That’s not really what most people expect after being told the house was inspected and not to worry!!!!!!. To sum up problems caused by the dishonest former owners: – Property damages by the toxic soot/fumes. – Among the property damaged, my years of art-work as I had been a working artist prior to what I’ll call the attack. – Loss of income as my massage gear was all contaiminated and un-safe for me to start my massage room as planned. – My life revolves around cleaning up the mess and repacking my items to be moved around for the professional cleaning so it’s a waste of time for me when I could be doing other things, like say getting a new job to replace my massage income. – My pets died as a direct result of what I suspect was being poisoned. This really feels like a personal attack. – Health hazards from being exposed to toxic fumes without my knowledge until I happened to look up the risks on the internet at my parents. How was I supposed to know how bad it really was?…Really I lived with the problems from day one when I moved in so I didn’t have much to compare to. Upon further inspecting the malfunctioning furnace, there was a tag on the outside that said it had not been cleaned in four years since 2007. No warning for the problems was ever given that there was a malfuctioning furnace so I am seeking a disclosure lawsuit now. I hardly know where to start as I’ve never done this. I only want fair compensation for what the negligence of the former home owners have caused when they could have so easily warned us and the furnace could have repaired.
    Omni Chaparala
    Replied almost 8 years ago
    Property disclosure laws help the sellers and the buyers complete a transaction honestly. Without them, it would be really difficult to conduct business. Thanks to these laws, buyers are better protected.
    Omni Chaparala
    Replied almost 8 years ago
    Property disclosure laws help the sellers and the buyers complete a transaction honestly. Without them, it would be really difficult to conduct business. Thanks to these laws, buyers are better protected.
    Emily
    Replied almost 7 years ago
    I moved into a house in 2006. In the disclosure statement it read, “…hard blowing rain may get small amount of water in front of basement (oil tank room) note: occurred when gutter was clogged/overflowing”. When asking my agent about it, she replied, “The water in the basement occurs when rains are particularly heavy, as they have been recently.” After moving into the house we discovered the basement floods at a level, nothing can be stored down there. This occurs even during a mild rain or snow melt (or the neighbors draining their pool water). During a bad real estate market, we decided to move out of the house and rent. The renter’s loved the house and the neighborhood, but at the end of the lease did not want to buy due to the flooding. We are now unable to sell our beautiful house in a beautiful neighborhood, due to this factor. What are the statue of limitations on making the seller and their agent responsible for this false statement in the disclosure?
    David Robey
    Replied almost 7 years ago
    I am going through something right now regarding my house. The small issues are that they claimed NO on foundation repairs, but there is CLEAR foundation repair after deep inspection. His mother died in the home (which I’m not angry about). But the main thing: The house is grandfathered in as “conditional Use’, being zoned as commercial now (it was built in 1935). This fact was not divulged prior to, during or after the sale, I found out by accident. I have learned that if my home burns to the ground, I will NOT be able to rebuild a home (anything over 60% damage will nullify the residential status use. I cannot expand my home in any way (but can remodel existing structure). If I had know this, I never would have purchased this house and because I am honest, I will probably not be able to sell it – will divulge this fact. Do I have any recourse? Were they required to divulge this on the disclosure sheet? Or, am I just screwed? David