An expensive “oops, I forgot”

Seller’s Disclosures seem like an annoying check-list sheet of paper attached at the end of the Contract. But it is far more important than that. The Seller’s Disclosures is something for both the buyer and the seller to review impeccably. 

Say you, the seller, have a furnace that is twelve years old.  A year ago you had a servicing company come take a look at it because you felt like it may not be working as well as it used to, and they invoiced you for a couple small fixes. But the problem didn’t seem to go away. You have the servicing company come out again. They give you a quote of $6,000 for replacing the furnace and clearly state in their invoice that the furnace must be replaced before it is used again.

Several months later, you decide to put the house on the market. In the Seller’s Disclosures, you indicate you aren’t aware of any issues with the furnace. You sell your house.  A week later, the buyer tries to turn on the furnace and realizes it’s completely nonfunctional.  

If the buyer does some digging and learns about the repair company’s evaluation, it could end up being very expensive for you.  Depending on the language of the contract and the law of the state that governs, you could be on the hook not only for the repair cost, but also other damages and attorneys fees.  Suddenly, a four-figure problem could become a five-figure problem.

Morale of the story: honesty pays off. Be upfront because that “…oops I forgot” could get very expensive.

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