Disclosure Requirements for Selling South Carolina Real Estate
In South Carolina, home sellers are required by law to disclose any issues they are aware of that would affect their property’s value. This protects you from any potential lawsuits down the line. No one wants to damage their sale, so it is necessary to disclose any damages before a contract is signed. These disclosure requirements include big problems like flooding or major environmental hazards.
In the state of South Carolina, all sellers are required to disclose information about buyer warranties or insurability of their property. No one wants a lawsuit. While laws vary from state to state, here are the disclosure requirements for selling in South Carolina.
What Are Real Estate Disclosures?
What are real estate disclosures? And why are they so important? There is no perfect property in existence. The laws of entropy dictate that things break down and systems fail over time. To create a clear picture for home buyers, sellers must disclose problems and issues with their homes upfront. This protects both buyer and seller – the buyer can make an informed decision, and the seller establishes goodwill with potential buyers by honestly disclosing any issues with their property
As a seller, you may have heard about the disclosure requirements of your state. In most cases, it’s best to disclose everything that could be pertinent to the buyer. This means disclosing everything from information on mold or asbestos in the home to a death that has occurred in the home. You can always ask for more time after signing a contract if something comes up, but don’t be surprised if this leads to a lower sale price or causes buyers to look elsewhere.
South Carolina is one of those states that requires a seller to tell the complete truth when they are selling their property. If they are not 100% honest, they could end up in court and face a hefty lawsuit over it. Be honest, disclose any problems you might have with your property, and you won’t end up in court over it.
Failing to disclose a property defect can lead to legal trouble for both you and your agent. Some states are much more lax about what must be disclosed than others. To find out the disclosure rules in your area, contact your local real estate regulator or speak with an attorney who specializes in real estate law.
WARNING: South Carolina is not a “buyer beware” state. Hence, you are under no legal obligation to provide a home disclosure statement if you and the buyer enter into an agreement in writing that no statement is being provided.
The South Carolina Real Estate Commission has a sample disclosure form that you can use as a template to make sure your new clients understand exactly what they are signing up for. It is a simple 24-question form regarding any conditions of the home. Some of the questions include:
- Water quality, and pressure
- Roof and gutters
- Structural components such as chimneys, basements, etc.
- Electrical, plumbing, and HVAC
- Any pest control or unfixed damages
- Zoning laws, easements, legal actions, erosion or flood hazards.
- Hazardous materials such as asbestos, lead-based paint, etc.
- Rental agreements still in place at closing (if renting separate rooms)
- Any outstanding bills
This form is designed to help you identify problems with your home’s systems so that you can discuss these with the inspector. Simply answer yes, no, or N/A; however, if you did not have a specific problem but the question applies to your home, please note it.
Many states require a written disclosure statement for your home inspector to work in that state. If that is the case, you should ask for it before hiring the inspector. The disclosure method can also vary from state to state. Some states only require a verbal disclosure statement. However, that can be more dangerous for you in the event of a lawsuit. Of course, your statement will have witnesses, but a document in black and white is always better.
South Carolina requires that the disclosure be delivered in a written statement, which may be in any form sufficient to clearly identify the real estate and the rights, obligations, interests, and remedies created by this agreement. This can be done simply by emailing the disclosure to the buyer via email.
Disclosure Requirements with Grand Strand Law Group LLC.
At Grand Strand Law Group, we are here to help you through the sale of your home. That includes helping you deal with any disclosure requirements the state requires. We understand that buying and selling a home can be an exciting venture, and Grand Strand Law Group is here to make the process as smooth as possible. We are here to help you every step of the legal way. Give us a call at 843.492.5422 and learn about how estate planning can resolve these situations before they can begin.