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What Do You Have to Disclose When Selling a House in Dallas Texas



home selling sale tips real estate agent realtor southlake colleyville coppell frisco castle hills dallas

Did you know that when you sell a property, you’re required to disclose information about its condition that might negatively affect its value? If you willfully conceal such information, you could be convicted of fraud in addition to being sued. Selling the property “as is” will not exempt you from these disclosures.

These rules affect anyone selling a home. Here are some types of information you might be required to disclose – or might want to disclose, even if your state’s laws don't require it – so your buyer won’t have a reason to file a lawsuit against you.

1. Death in the Home

Some buyers may have concerns or superstitions about purchasing a home in which someone has died, so it’s important to know if your state requires sellers to disclose a previous death in the home.

In Texas deaths from natural causes, suicides, or accidents unrelated to the property do not have to be disclosed.

2. Neighborhood Nuisances

A nuisance is a noise or odor from a source outside the property that could irritate the property’s occupants. North Carolina requires sellers to disclose noises, odors, smoke or other nuisances from commercial, industrial or military sources that affect the property.

3. Environmental and Natural Hazards

If the home is at an increased risk of damage from a natural disaster or has known or potential environmental contamination, you may be required to disclose this information to the buyer.

Texas law requires sellers to disclose the presence of hazardous or toxic waste, asbestos, urea-formaldehyde insulation, radon gas, lead-based paint and previous use of the premises for the manufacture of methamphetamine.

States may also require disclosure of mine subsidence, underground pits, settlement, sliding, upheaval or other earth-stability defects.

While most disclosure requirements are governed by the states, the federal government mandates one: the disclosure that lead-based paint may be present on any property constructed before 1978.

4. Homeowners' Association Information

If the home is governed by a homeowners' association (HOA) you should disclose that fact. You also need to know about the HOA’s financial health and provide this information to the buyer so that he or she can make an informed purchasing decision.

5. Repairs

What have you repaired and why? Buyers need to know the home’s repair history so they can have their home inspector pay extra attention to problem areas and be aware of probable future issues. Texas law, for example, requires sellers to disclose previous structural or roof repairs; landfill, settling, soil movement or fault lines; and defects or malfunctions in walls, the roof, fences, the foundation, floors, sidewalks and any other current or previous problems affecting the home’s structural integrity. You may also need to disclose electrical or plumbing repairs and any other problems you would want to know about if you were going to buy the home and live in it.

6. Water Damage

When water gets in where it shouldn’t, it can damage personal possessions, undermine the home’s structure and even create a health hazard if it encourages mold growth. Sellers should disclose past or present leaks or water damage.

7. Missing Items

Sometimes homebuyers have so much on their minds that they might not notice that a home is missing an essential component until after they move in. Some states’ disclosure laws attempt to prevent this problem. Texas for example, requires sellers to disclose whether the property comes with a long list of items, including kitchen appliances, central air conditioning and heating, rain gutters, exhaust fans and water heaters.

8. Other Possible Disclosures

Buyers need to know if the home is in a special historic district because it will affect their ability to make repairs and alterations, and it might also increase the cost of those activities.

Texas law requires sellers to disclose active termites or other wood-destroying insects, termite or wood-rot damage in need of repair, previous termite damage and previous termite treatment.

You may also be required to disclose problems with drainage or grading, zoning, pending litigation, changes made without permits, boundary disputes and easement.

How to Disclose

Some states, such as Texas, require sellers to use a specific disclosure form. The form may be more or less comprehensive than what state law requires. If the form isn’t comprehensive enough for your situation, supplement it with a list of the additional items you wish to disclose. The seller should make all disclosures to the buyer in writing, and both the buyer and seller should sign and date the document. Be sure you review what you need to disclose, and how it should be worded, with a real-estate attorney.

The Bottom Line

Even if a particular disclosure is not required in your area, if you have a piece of information about a house that might make a buyer unhappy, you might want to disclose it anyway. In addition to the moral reasons for being honest with prospective buyers – and the desire to avoid the expense and hassle of a lawsuit – you have a reputation to protect. If you have any concerns about whether you’ve disclosed the property’s condition correctly, contact a real estate attorney in your state.

Are you a first time home seller in Coppell, TX? If so, make sure you take good note of the above tips and tricks. By following the above tips and tricks, selling your first home will seem much easier and less stressful! If you have no selected a top Coppell, TX Realtor to represent you in your home sale ,contact me, and I’d love the opportunity to interview for the opportunity to get your home sold!

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