Tag Archives: Real Estate Attorney

Selling Your Home? Be Aware of Your Legal Duty to Disclose Defects

Real estate prices are up again, and you are considering selling your home. It’s a great home and you feel that you’ve done an admirable job maintaining it, but it does have its flaws and defects. Do you need to disclose these defects to your buyer? In Wisconsin the answer is “Yes”. The law requires persons who transfer real property located in this state to furnish a completed Real Estate Condition Report to the prospective buyer no later than 10 days after accepting a sales contract.  Whether you are represented by a realtor or selling your home as a For Sale By Owner, you must comply with these legal requirements.

What is a Defect?

Under the Wisconsin disclosure law a “defect” is defined as any condition that would have a significant adverse effect on the value of the property; that would significantly impair the health or safety of the future occupants of the property; or that if not repaired, removed or replaced would significantly shorten or adversely affect the expected normal life of the premises.

What Defects Must You Disclose to Your Buyer?

The Real Estate Condition Report required under Wisconsin law lists several defects and conditions that could potentially apply to a property. When completing the report a seller must honestly identify the applicable defects or conditions of which the seller is aware (of which he or she has notice or knowledge). Such defects or conditions include things such as: defects in the roof, electrical system, plumbing, heating and cooling system, cracks or seepage in the basement walls, boundary line disputes, unsafe levels of radon, along with a long list of other possible defects. The report also has a catch-all question that asks the seller to identify any “other” defects affecting the property of which the seller is aware. Continue reading

Real Estate Law: Protect You Real Estate Investment with a Real Estate Attorney

For Sale By Owner Attorney

The real estate market is finally beginning to recover. Whether you’re working with a realtor, or venturing out on your own to buy or sell a property, it’s always a good idea to consult with an experienced real estate attorney. This is especially true with a For Sale by Owner transaction, also know as a FSBO.For Sale By Owner

A real estate transaction often begins with a document referred to as an Offer to Purchase.  While this document may appear to be a fairly innocent looking form, it is in fact a legally binding contract that consists of several important provisions. Unsuspecting sellers and buyers often have no idea of the legal consequence of these provisions. Great care must be taken to ensure that a real estate offer is properly prepared, and that all necessary contingencies and terms are included. Each contract should be custom tailored to each set of circumstances.

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