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Selling a Home? Here’s What You Need to Tell Prospective Buyers

Mockaitis Law Group LLC Jan. 12, 2018

Whether you are buying or selling a home in Illinois, it is a significant legal and financial step. Many people underestimate the serious nature of this type of transaction, assuming that they only need an experienced real estate agent to navigate the potential complications of this process. In reality, even as the seller, it can be helpful to understand how you can protect your long-term interests.

Selling a home is typically more involved than just listing the house for sale. You may have to clean, rearrange furniture, paint and do other things to attract the attention of a potential buyer. In addition to the cosmetic issues you may have to address, it could also be useful to understand the things you are legally obligated to disclose to any potential buyer.

Are There Problems with Your House?

There are certain things that you, as the seller, must tell any person who makes an offer on your house. This may worry you, as every house has small problems, but failure to do this could lead to legal complications in the future. You may need to know the following about required disclosures as the seller:

  • You do not necessarily have to go searching for problems with your house, but you do have to let buyers know about issues of which you are aware.

  • While an inspection of the property may not be a requirement, it is possible that the buyer could ask for it as a contingency in the purchase agreement.

  • It may make a potential buyer more likely to make an offer if you fix certain problems, but it may not be a legal requirement to do so. Repairs could be a contingency in the purchase agreement.

Disclosures are necessary, and if you do not do so, it could result in the purchase of your home falling through or other complications in the future.

Selling an Old Home

If you are selling an old home and the presence of lead paint is possible, you must tell buyers about the potential hazards. Buyers also have the right to an inspection of the house. You must also include warnings in the contract, and it is prudent to be very careful that you follow all legal requirements when disclosing the presence of lead paint.

Protecting Your Interests, Start to Finish

Selling a home could be an exciting step for your family, but it is helpful to have guidance as you walk through this process. This can ensure that you have the necessary support for challenges that may arise, as well as ensuring that you meet your legal obligations as the seller.