What information do you need to disclose to buyers when you sell your home?

If you do an online search about lawsuits and real estate, you’ll find a long list of lawsuits that mostly pertain to seller disclosures. So what sorts of things are you not required to disclose?

  1. Visual defects. These are defects that can be easily found with a good eye. If you or an inspector can see these defects, then they don’t need to be disclosed. If you’re a buyer, I’d look at everything in the home before writing an offer, including under countertops and appliances, and checking for stains and water damage.
  2. Psychological defects. The home may have been the site of a murder, or be allegedly haunted, but you won’t necessarily have to disclose this. If these are concerns for buyers, they can do an RCMP website search on the property. In the case of ghosts, they can hire a feng shui master, which are becoming more and more common in Vancouver.

Now, what sorts of things are you required to disclose?

“You are required to disclose any latent material defects.”

You are required to disclose any latent material defects. These are defects that cannot be seen with a home inspection, including mold behind the walls, the presence of underground oil tanks, as well as recurring defects like a basement that floods when it rains.

When in doubt, it is always a good policy to disclose. The buyer can sue the seller after moving into the property if they can prove that they defects were known by the seller.

If you have any questions about disclosures, please feel free to reach out to me. I’d be happy to help you.