Your Home Disclosure Statement

Agency Relationship Disclosure

This is not a binding contract . It is a one-page form that explains your rights regarding representation.

Seller Property Information Report

This is a multipage document that the seller fills out to list any known defects in the home as well as information that the seller knows about the home. When a buyer puts an offer on the home, s/he will review the report and sign it.

This protects the seller. The buyer can’t come back to the seller after the closing and try to get damages based on lack of seller disclosure. The signature on the report is proof that the buyer knows what the seller knows. Disclosure includes defects that are not obvious! Eventually the defect will be found and, if not previously disclosed, the sellers have opened themselves to a lawsuit.

Exclusive Right to Market Property

This contract is between you and the real estate company (represented by your agent). In this contract you agree to the price you will list your house at, the amount of commission you will pay and the length of time you will commit to listing with the company.

There are also places to indicate if you will have a sign and a lockbox on your house, whether you grant permission to put your house in the Multiple Listing Service database and whether or not you require the listing agent to be present when your home is shown.

One key to a quick sale is access. You will want a lockbox on your home so agents can gain access. The more viewing appointment restrictions you put in the way, the longer it will take to sell your home. When an agent goes out showing property, typically s/he has a number of homes lined up. If one of those homes has too many hoops to jump through and the buyer doesn’t have the time to jump through them, then that house will be dropped off the list. That might have been the buyer who would have made an offer.

Lead Paint Statement

If a home was built before 1978, the seller indicates whether there is lead paint present in the home. If the seller doesn’t know, there is a place to indicate that.

Smoke Detector Certificate

This document indicates that the home has a sufficient number of smoke detectors and that they are in operating condition. State law mandates that homes have a specific number of operating smoke detectors.

A Helpful Hint

It serves the seller to have any documents on the house available for the Realtor to take for the office file. Copies will be made and the originals returned. This includes (but is not restricted to): energy certificate, warranty deed, building permits, condo docs, the most recent septic pumping receipt, recent appraisals or inspection reports. If the documents are in the office file, they can be accessed immediately when they’re required