Should You Tell Everything When Selling

Should you​ Tell Everything when Selling?
You may not know exactly how much to​ tell the​ potential buyer of​ your home about the​ property .​
Disclosure to​ potential home buyers about problems and issues has been a​ much debated subject .​
Many areas actually have laws that require certain disclosures to​ be made at​ the​ time the​ real estate contract is​ entered into.
Personally,​ I​ tell all .​
Everything from the​ once or​ twice the​ wind blew down the​ chimney the​ wrong way one windy spring to​ the​ small little hole in​ the​ guest room window screen .​
Nothing is​ too small and nothing is​ to​ large.
Caveat Emptor -- let the​ buyer beware -- used to​ be the​ law when it​ came to​ real estate transactions .​
Unless the​ buyer specifically asked about the​ defect,​ the​ seller didn't need to​ disclose any problems.
But over the​ years,​ the​ Courts noticed that this was unfair .​
Car buyers get to​ test drive cars,​ so why should home buyers be so blind? If a​ seller knows about a​ problem in​ the​ home,​ the​ problem should be corrected or​ disclosed to​ a​ potential buyer.
Modern consumer protection acts have led to​ disclosure requirements for sellers.
Although the​ laws vary from place to​ place,​ the​ purpose of​ these diclosures remain the​ same .​
Sellers of​ residential real estate must disclose to​ their purchasers any known defects or​ information concerning the​ water and sewer systems,​ insulations,​ structural systems,​ plumbing,​ electrical,​ heating and air-conditioning systems,​ fixtures and much more.
These laws require the​ seller to​ complete a​ disclosure form at​ the​ time the​ real estate purchase contract is​ entered into and give it​ to​ the​ purchaser .​
If the​ purchaser has not recieved the​ form,​ he or​ she will have the​ right to​ terminate the​ contract and receive a​ full return of​ the​ earnest money.
What is​ considered a​ defect? Must it​ be something large? Do bones in​ the​ backyard really qualify as​ a​ defect?
Yes,​ they do .​
The courts have even ruled that land discovered to​ once be a​ graveyard or​ a​ scene of​ a​ heinous crime must come with a​ disclosure.
For example,​ in​ 1964,​ Mr .​
Louis Hickman created and recorded a​ piece of​ land that was once a​ graveyard .​
Mr .​
Hickman had removed the​ tombstones and all other surface evidence,​ leaving the​ graves underground.
In the​ 80's,​ a​ couple built a​ house on​ the​ lot .​
Fifteen years later,​ they discovered the​ graveyard.
The case (Carven vs .​
Hickman) used the​ Statute of​ Repose .​
This statute basically is​ designed to​ protect builders from perpetual liability for defective conditions due to​ the​ improvement of​ a​ property .​
The graveyard did not count as​ an​ improvement and did not protect Mr .​
Hickman from liability for the​ defect.
This case isn't your technical lack of​ disclosure case,​ but it​ gives you​ an​ idea of​ what you​ should disclose -- everything .​
Otherwise,​ thirty-one years later,​ you​ or​ your estate could be sued for non-disclosure.
Caveat Emptor has no place in​ today's real estate market .​
Disclosure of​ all known problems isn't just being honest,​ it​ is​ beneficial for the​ home seller .​
You can protect yourself from litigation by simply stated everything .​
Yes,​ the​ price might drop a​ few hundred dollars,​ but it​ may save you​ tens of​ thousands in​ lawyer fees later.

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