A Disclosure statement is important to both home buyers and sellers. Home sellers often provide their disclosure statement to potential buyers before an offer is made or once an offer has been accepted. This is a document that is primarily used to provide all the necessary information regarding the property to the buyer. When a seller discloses a current or past issue about the home, the buyer will then have to investigate the property and check the mentioned issues themselves. Without the disclosure statement or if the home seller lies in his disclosure statement, he will then be held liable for any accidents that may occur once the buyer resides in the property.
What Does A Disclosure Statement Contain?
When you go shopping for a new home and make an offer on a chosen property, the seller will have to provide you with a disclosure statement. This is where the seller describes his history as the owner of the home you wish to buy, the general condition of the entire property and its age. As an important document, it will also contain –
- Details about any property features shared with neighbors
- Information about any structural modifications and alterations made without the necessary permits
- Notes if hazardous materials has been used in the home
- Copies of all inspection reports
- Copies of warranties, permits and repair bills
- The type of heat and air conditioning used in the home
- Details about the age and materials used for roofing
- Location of exhaust fans
- List of all the kinds of appliances used
- Details about emergency alarms
- The type of swimming pool, pool heater and other pool accessories
- Details about window treatments and window security options
- Information about the facilities or systems that are not functioning properly
- Notes about any defects in the interior and exterior walls, flooring, ceiling, insulation, doors, foundation, driveway, sidewalks, windows and other structural components
Nevertheless, aside from the disclosure statement that the seller will give, your realtor will also provide you with detailed information regarding the property from the beginning.
How A Disclosure Statement Influences Your Decision To Buy
As a buyer you must review the disclosure statement as it will help you decide whether to buy or pass and it will also be useful in court should any problems arise once you move in the home. It is important that you read it carefully, understand everything written and ask if you have any doubts, even if the seller is in a hurry to close the transaction.
When you are aware of the exact condition of the home you are purchasing, you will feel confident and comfortable about the property you will be investing in. It will also prevent you from having to deal with certain issues involving mold, pests and electrical problems. Sadly, if all these detail are included in the disclosure statement, but you had missed them when you read it too fast, you will not be able to defend yourself in court. Be completely informed by taking your time with the disclosure statement and if you are unsure about certain information in the document, your realtor can explain everything to you and help you decide if the home is right for you.
About the Author
Valerie Summers is a freelance writer specializing in real estate. She writes about homes and other real estate related articles for Ventura Real Estate where realtors can be consulted about properties that suit your needs and budget.