How contingencies and disclosures work when buying a home

On Behalf of | Nov 17, 2020 | Firm News

When you buy a Georgia home, you want to make sure you know as much about the property as possible. Once the sale becomes final, you have limited options in the event that you find something wrong with the place. You may, too, want to make an offer on a particular property, but you need to make sure certain terms come to fruition before doing so. 

In real estate, the term “disclosures” refers to the potential defects, risks or other things the seller has a legal obligation to inform you about before the property changes hands. Contingencies, on the other hand, outline what conditions or terms must come to be before you agree to move forward with the home purchase. 

Common real estate disclosures

Georgia’s disclosure laws are somewhat lax. The seller has an obligation to tell you about any major material defects that exist on the property. The seller must also answer any direct questions you ask about the property truthfully. He or she does not, however, have to tell you about any crimes that occurred in the home or whether you would have any sex offenders for neighbors. So, it is important that you research such matters yourself. 

Common real estate contingencies

You may agree to buy a particular home with a mortgage contingency in place. This means you plan to buy the home as long as you get a loan for it. You may, too, make an offer on a property contingent upon it passing inspection or your existing home selling first, among other common contingency examples.