11 Crucial Details to Disclose Before Selling Your Home

March 20, 2023
Ella Martin
Ella Martin

Congratulations if you've had an offer on your home! You are prepared to proceed to the selling process' last steps, which include meeting your disclosure duties. Sellers of real estate are obligated by law to advise prospective buyers about any repairs, defects, or other issues that can lower the property's value. You might be sued and prosecuted if you knowingly conceal facts about the worth of your house.

It's never too early to complete your disclosure paperwork to cover any of the following concerns, even though disclosures normally take place when a house is in escrow—the buyer typically receives this information as part of the closing process. Here is a comprehensive list of all the information you will need to disclose to your buyer before you seal the deal!

1. Mold

Your potential buyer should be the first to be informed if there is a mold issue with your home. Inform potential buyers about the existence of dangerous substances like black mold that need to be removed or remedied by a nearby firm. Although mold is a pretty typical home issue, it may quickly damage an investment. To detect the infestation before it gets worse, look for warning indications of mold, such as a strong odor or discoloration on the walls or ceiling.

2. Termite Harm

You must reveal the specifics of the infestation and treatment if your home has ever undergone termite damage treatment. It's also advisable to reveal the problem early rather than trying to cover it up because most house inspections include a probe for termite damage, both recent and historical. To prevent any surprises in the home inspection report, you might wish to engage a nearby pest treatment business to examine the foundation boards before you put your house on the market.

3. Water Damage

A real estate transaction may be made or broken by water incursion. Interior floods or leaks can deteriorate the home's structure, harm personal belongings, and even promote the spread of mold. In light of this, sellers should inform prospective purchasers of any previous or present leaks or ongoing water damage. Some jurisdictions demand that you declare any flooding damage, roof leaks, plumbing issues, water in the basement or crawl area, and other issues.

4. Paint made of Lead

If your home was constructed before 1978, it can still contain lead-based paint, which might be hazardous to your health. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development mandates that all sellers inform potential buyers of the existence of lead-based paint since lead exposure from paint, paint chips, and dust can result in a variety of health problems in both children and adults. A qualified home inspector can check and test your walls for lead-based paint if you're unsure whether your house has the dangerous substance.

5. A Mortality at Home

Follow your state's regulations when it comes to the touchy matter of publicizing a death that occurs at home. While some jurisdictions simply demand disclosure of prior violent crimes or suicides, others require sellers to acknowledge whether any form of death occurred in the property Even if your state doesn't require it, it can be a good idea to be open and honest with prospective buyers and err on the side of caution. By doing this, you steer clear of any negligence claims and foster trust with your customer.

6. Area of Natural Disaster

Let's say you reside in a region where natural disasters like earthquakes and hurricanes are common. Before selling your home, you'll probably need to complete a Natural Hazards Disclosure form if the property is near a natural disaster zone.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency's designated flood hazard zones, potential flooding zones or dam failure inundation areas, high fire hazard severity zones, wildland fire areas or state fire responsibility areas, earthquake fault zones, and seismic hazard zones are the six zones that are covered by the California code. To find out if you have to give your customer this crucial information, check the law in your jurisdiction.

7. Environment related risks

Existing and recognized environmental pollution in your home? If so, you must give your house buyer all pertinent information in line with the rules of your state. For instance, several jurisdictions demand that sellers declare if their house has ever been cited for serving as a methamphetamine manufacturing facility. You may also be required to tell whether the property has ever been a landfill or whether dangerous material leaks or radon have ever occurred on it.

8. Neighborhood Irritants

Moving to a new area only to find its surroundings unpleasant is the worst possible situation. Because of this, property owners are required to disclose any annoyances nearby that could annoy or hurt potential new residents.The list of "nuisances," which varies by state, includes places like landfills, farms, airports, shooting ranges, and any adjacent industry, commercial, or military establishment that can emit aromas, smoke, or noise.

9. Homeowners Associations serve as the Government

You must tell prospective purchasers if your house is governed by a homeowners' or neighborhood organization and what its bylaws are. Membership in a homeowners' or neighborhood association sometimes entails yearly or monthly dues as well as regulations that can make it difficult for a buyer to make any modifications they may desire in the future. You must provide them with the whole breakdown of HOA or NA facts because these factors influence their decision to acquire a home.

10. Homemade Fixes

Imagine that you replaced the entire deck on your own since the old one had rotted to the joists. In order for purchasers to understand what repairs have been completed and what possible problems—like water penetration in the wooden deck boards—to be on the lookout for in the future, you will need to disclose that type of significant repair. The upgrades you've performed to support your asking price might also be mentioned here.

11. Additional Potential Disclosures

You should give your buyer any extra information regarding the property that would be useful to know along with the key disclosures mentioned above. There is information to give if there is a creek or walkway nearby to your home. If your house is regarded as historic or is situated in a designated historic area, you should also disclose this information to the buyer since it may impact the type of exterior improvements or adjustments the new owner is permitted to make.