What Exactly is a Property Disclosure Statement?
Disclosure laws vary depending on what state you live in, but ultimately are required to some extent for every home sale. Essentially, a Property Disclosure statement is meant to disclose to the buyer any problems a home may have that would affect the home’s value. If a potential buyer is concerned with any of the issues brought up in the Property Disclosure, they may choose to renegotiate or even withdraw an offer. Sellers are required to disclose any problems in the home they are aware of, but cannot be held accountable for issues they didn’t know about.
There are some federal regulations that will apply no matter where you live, such as disclosing any lead paint or asbestos present in the home, but otherwise regulations vary widely. And depending on what type of property, you may have additional forms to complete in conjunction with the Property Disclosure statement – for example, if you’re selling a condominium or multi-family home. To prepare to complete a Property Disclosure statement, you’ll want to gather information about when systems and utilities in your home were last serviced and any work or renovations you had done. Completing all the necessary forms for a home sale may seem overwhelming, but ultimately it's just about reading closely, gathering all the information you need, and working with an experienced REALTOR® who can help guide you through the process.