Knowing the disclosure requirements for the state you're selling your house in will prevent any legal battles. Not only does it keep the buyer's health and safety in mind, but it keeps you from negative financial repercussions if you're dishonest.
Deciding to sell your home is the beginning of a lengthy but generally rewarding process. There are many crucial steps that are necessary to take, and partnering with a local real estate agent will help make this run smoothly.
Once you've gone through the listing process, staged your home for showings, and found a potential buyer, it's time to move on to the paperwork and legal requirements. After an offer has been submitted and accepted, home inspections are going to be done, which leads to more negotiations. Around this time is when you are legally required to disclose information that is pertinent to the buyers.
Each state has different requirements for various reasons, however, it's always recommended to err on the side of caution to prevent future legal disputes. An experienced local real estate agent will know the disclosure requirements for Oklahoma and help you be transparent with potential buyers. Here are the disclosure requirements for selling Oklahoma real estate.
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Water and Sewer
In Oklahoma, you are required to provide information regarding any water and sewer system defects. This ranges from where the water for the home is sourced and if there are any water treatment systems in place. You must also note if there had been any previous water seeping into the heating and air ducts. Drainage and grading problems are also legally required to be noted as well as the flood zone status.
Structural status are usually determined in home inspections but if they are not discovered at that point, you are required to disclose any information about it. This includes any defects with the roof, walls, foundation, floors, and any basement. If water damage was the source of the defect, this is going to be noted in the water system defects.
Plumbing, HVAC, and Electric
You are not required to note any damage to the HVAC system unless you have made the necessary repairs or replacements. If you had replaced any of these systems, you will most likely want to include this in your listing to attract buyers. However, any ongoing issues with plumbing, heating, cooling, and electricity must be noted.
You are required to note if there was ever any infestation or damage done by wood destroying organisms. Termites are very common and can often create more damage than some homeowners realize. Again, this should come up during a home inspection and would then need to be disclosed to the buyer.
Damage from Natural Disasters
Natural disasters are not preventable and can happen with little to no warning. Many people are lucky and walk away with little to no damage from a natural disaster. However, if your house sustained damage from a fire or tornado, this will need to be disclosed to the buyers. Even if the issue seems minor, there is a possibility that it could affect the safety and well-being of the potential buyers.
You are required to list any environmental risks such as contamination to soil, air, and water. If there is a risk of being exposed to hydrocarbons, asbestos, any type of mold, and radon gas, this needs to be listed as well. If your house was built before 1978, you are required to disclose if the house has any lead-based paint.
All of these risks could potentially negatively impact the health and wellbeing of the potential residents. Some of these risks you might not have been aware of and should come up during a house inspection.
Even though it might seem risky to disclose information like this to your buyers, it will save you from major legal battles. It is also the ethical thing to do to inform the future residents of your home what they should expect from buying the house.