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Do sellers need to disclose anything to potential buyers?

On Behalf of | Mar 31, 2023 | Real Estate |

First-time homebuyers understandably go into the process with a lot of stress, even if they are fairly well informed. After all, there are a lot of things to remember, like usage restrictions and building codes.

It is important for buyers to arm themselves with as much knowledge as possible when facing their first purchase, and this means starting from the basics.

Disclosure forms in Georgia

Though it is normal in many states for a seller to have to complete a disclosure form, this is not the case in Georgia.

Fear not, though. The courts have still ruled that sellers must divulge any information about material defects on the property, so as to prevent a seller from unfairly offloading the burden of a defective property onto an unsuspecting customer.

As noted by the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors, material defects in a home count as anything that has an adverse and significant impact on the overall value of the property.

As an example of what is and is not necessary for disclosure, a property owner does not have to disclose “surface issues”. This can include things like peeling wallpaper. They do, however, have to disclose structural issues like a sagging foundation or leaks.

Do exceptions exist?

In some ways, yes. As mentioned, sellers do not have to disclose surface issues. They do not have to disclose things that are apparent and obvious, either, such as a damaged roof or missing windows.

Working with a qualified home inspector can make it easier to detect these exceptions, too. They have expertise in the area and can pick out “obvious” defects that you may not have noticed on your own, thus saving you time and money.

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