Selling Your Home - Disclosure
Whose obligation is it to disclose pertinent information about a
In South Carolina the seller who must disclose all material facts and latent defects of the property. Under the strictest laws, you and your agent are required to disclose all facts materially affecting the
value or desirability of the property which are known or accessible only to you.
This might include: homeowners association dues; whether or not work done on the
house meets local building codes and permits requirements; the presence of any
neighborhood nuisances or noises which a prospective buyer might not notice,
such as a dog that barks every night or poor TV reception; any death within
three years on the property; and any restrictions on the use of the property,
such as zoning ordinances or association rules.
What are the standard
Most purchase offers include two standard contingencies: a
financing contingency, which makes the sale dependent on the buyers' ability to
obtain a loan commitment from a lender, and an inspection contingency, which
allows buyers to have professionals inspect the property to their satisfaction. Also a buyer and seller could agree on a DUE DILIGENCE arrangement which would allow the buyer to end the contract for any reason. There are costs associated with this special privilege.
purchase contract must include the sellers responsibilities, such things as
passing clear title, maintaining the property in its present condition until
closing and making any agreed-upon repairs to the property. Orangeburg Homes provides the South Carolina Purchase agreement which addresses all facets of contract contingencies.
Do I need
an attorney when I buy a house?
In South Carolina the law requires that all real estate transactions be attended by an attorney. The buyer chooses the attorney unless the seller agrees to pay buyer's closing costs which could include legal fees.
What repairs should the seller
If you want to get top dollar for your property, you probably need
to make all minor repairs and selected major repairs before going on the market.
Nearly all purchase contracts include an inspection clause which allows the home buyer the right to have a home inspected by a licensed and bonded home inspector.
Do sellers have to disclose the terms of other
Sellers are not legally obligated to disclose the terms of other
offers to prospective buyers. In fact the law protects the confidentiality of offers made by buyers and counter-offers made by sellers.
How do I get the real
scoop on homes I am looking at?
Home inspections, seller disclosure
requirements and the agent's experience will help. South Carolina law requires the seller to complete a SELLER PROPERTY DISCLOSURE and the buyer is entitled to have a copy before making an offer.real estate
transfer disclosure statement. Here is a summary of the things you could expect
to see in a disclosure form:
* In the kitchen -- a range, oven, microwave,
dishwasher, garbage disposal, trash compactor.
* Safety features such as
burglar and fire alarms, smoke detectors, sprinklers, security gate, window
screens and intercom.
* The presence of a TV antenna or satellite dish,
carport or garage, automatic garage door opener, rain gutters, sump pump.
Amenities such as a pool or spa, patio or deck, built-in barbeque and
* Type of heating, condition of electrical wiring, gas supply and
presence of any external power source, such as solar panels.
* The type of
water heater, water supply, sewer system or septic tank also should be
Sellers also are required to indicate any significant defects or malfunctions
existing in the home's major systems. A checklist specifies interior and
exterior walls, ceilings, roof, insulation, windows, fences, driveway,
sidewalks, floors, doors, foundation, as well as the electrical and plumbing
systems. The form also asks sellers to note the presence of environmental
hazards, walls or fences shared with adjoining landowners, any encroachments or
easements, room additions or repairs made without the necessary permits or not
in compliance with building codes, zoning violations, citations against the
property and lawsuits against the seller affecting the property. Also look for,
or ask about, settling, sliding or soil problems, flooding or drainage problems
and any major damage resulting from earthquakes, floods or landslides.
People buying a condominium must be told about covenants, codes and
restrictions or other deed restrictions. It's important to note that the simple
idea of disclosing defects has broadened significantly in recent years. Many
jurisdictions have their own mandated disclosure forms as do many brokers and
agents. Also, the home inspection and home warranty industries have grown
significantly to accommodate increased demand from cautious buyers. Be sure to
ask questions about anything that remains unclear or does not seem to be
properly addressed by the forms provided to you.