AS-IS and Inspections: What you May NOT Understand:
To be sure, both buying a horse property or selling one is serious business and you need
to read and understand what is called out in the inspections and disclosures, especially
if you are thinking about buying
AS IS. In this 21-century disclosure world, the word disclosure is now
synonymous to both buying and
selling, and especially in real estate.
If you are the seller and are adamant about not wanting to fix anything, selling WYSIWYG (i.e., what you see is what you get) seems to be the way to go. However, in order to sell AS-IS successfully, you should be knowledgeable of the possible ramifications. From I have always been advised by my personal real estate attorney, (who was especially knowledgeable and taught classes for the California Association of Realtors, CAR), you should always spell-out to the buyer exactly what your As-Is, "IS". In other words, you should spell out what you mean by AS-IS by giving the buyer official inspections (or a full written disclosure.) However, your so-called own personal, and FULL WRITTEN DISCLOSURE will more than likely not cover you in court. You may not mention things that the buyer later discovers and feels you should have known about and most certainly should have told him.
In these days with so many attorneys, with many looking for work just like this, it is not "Buyer Beware" but also "Seller Beware." Attorneys often take cases on a contingency basis, so there is certainly a chance of you, the seller being called into court later after close of escrow when the buyer discovers something he thinks you, the Seller, SHOULD HAVE known about and TOLD HIM about. There are things you will have to tell him yourself like your neighbor's loud barking dogs or that someone was killed in your home, a haunted barn, or disputed boundry. On most things, however, if licensed inspectors did the inspections and overlooked something, let him be on the "hook" and not you. Again, the seller can disclose things themselves, without furnishing inspections, but this is not the safest thing to do in today's real estate world. It is no longer proper to say "You must take my home in its present condition." You must fully spell-out what your present condition is and what the buyer can expect to experience living there. Full disclosure is now almost universal and best be done with complete honesty and with licensed, knowledgeable inspectors.
I repeat, for the safest way of selling or buying AS-IS, first, order all your inspections then read them, knowing that what you READ is what you HAVE (and for the seller, what you are selling). If the buyer wants to order additional inspections himself, other than the ones you hopefully furnished him, let the buyer do it. You want to hide nothing.
IMPORTANT TO NOTE:
NEVER advertise you home "AS-IS" up front in your ads OR on the Realtor's listing agreement that may or may not go into MLS (Multiple Listing Service.) If you do, that will scare off good buyers, or worst, encourage NO offers or only very low one. If you want to sell AS-IS, (and many sellers would prefer this if they could get away with it) let the buyer make his offer FIRST, then have his inspections, then tell him you might fix one or two of the things on his list, but basically you want else to go "AS-IS." It is here you can negotiate. You will probably discover there are more things on the "to do list" of inspections than you thought so you have a chance to considering the price of your property if he agrees to take responsibility of all the deferred maintenance, i.e., buying "AS-IS". If you advertise AS-IS upfront, there may never be an OFFER that you can negotiate with, or even consider. It is always better to have choices.
FINALLY, buyers and sellers should all sign and date each and every report and initial all pages. For the seller, to be absolutely safe, if there is any doubt about your liability in selling AS-IS, and you want to guarantee that all your money stays in your bank after close of escrow, have one of those attorneys I mentioned to look everything over before you sign away your home and any possible fortune you make from selling it or future lottery or investment.
By using licensed and insured inspectors, the inspectors may well be on the hook themselves
for missed items rather than either
the buyer or you, the seller. However, if the seller knows of something serious that the
inspectors overlooked, the seller
should always disclose it anyway and then he is fairly safe selling
AS-IS if they buyer
signs off on all the
reports and all the area required disclosures you have given him, then you know the buyer is
prepared to take the home with
its imperfections. Keep those signed copies for a few years. You might be happy you did.
Most Realtors are good at handling this kind of sale and folks usually have no need for an attorney to look it over unless the Realtor advises them to do so. To be super-safe, check with your attorney on the exact wording.
Article by: Marie A. Griffith, 2018 ---Marie is now retired from selling real estate and markets her website full time. She has been a licensed residential real estate agent since 1975 (practicing primarily in California and briefly in New Mexico as a Real Estate Broker). Over the years, she did not hesitate to pay her real estate attorney (out of her own pocket) for his expert advice on any and all important matters. As a result she has never been named in a lawsuit nor have any of her hundreds of clients. You can read Marie's "bio here."
DISCLOSURE: Different parts of the country may have
their own additional requirements or customs; Some more,
AND SOME LESS. My experience is mainly in California (which tends to be stricter than some
areas of the country) with some experience as a NM Broker. It is best to check with your
and/or a local real estate attorney for any differences of laws or area customs and perhaps
obtain even more CURRENT information. Also, Appreciate hearing from
leading Realtors in other areas of the country, nationally, or internationally, if you have
any information to
add to this. Email Marie at: firstname.lastname@example.org
--- Copyright: 2018 by Marie Griffith
BuyHorseProperties.com: Website Founded 2002
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Disclaimer: All information deemed reliable but not guaranteed and should be independently verified. All properties are subject to prior sale, change or withdrawal. Neither listing broker(s) nor Garden Valley Enterprises, BuyHorseProperties.com, or Marie Griffith shall be responsible for any typographical errors, misinformation, misprints and shall be held totally harmless. Copyright 2018. All rights reserved.