When it comes to selling properties in Los Angeles, sellers are legally obligated to disclose possible problems to prospective buyers that may impact the properties' value. Also, it is not legal to purposely hide major property defects. If a seller fails to share with potential buyers any major problems that his or her property has, this is grounds for real estate litigation.
As a general rule of thumb, property owners must make disclosures only for those problems of which they are aware. This means that they generally do not need to have professionals inspect their properties before they sell them. However, hiring a professional can be helpful in that the seller may learn about a problem and then quickly fix it before putting his or her property on the market. This will help him or her to avoid potentially losing a good buyer to a problem that the buyer may discover when he or she hires his or her own inspector to examine the property for issues.
Of course, if sellers do end up discovering problems with their properties, they do not necessarily have to repair them. They only have to disclose the issues. Still, these unresolved issues could very well impact the valuations that appraisers or buyers place on their properties.
The state of California has very detailed requirements for disclosing real estate issues, with real estate litigation being a viable option for buyers if these issues are not disclosed properly. For this reason, an applied understanding of the state's laws in this area is critical for those wishing to sell property here. An attorney in Los Angeles can walk buyers and sellers through these requirements so that his or her best interests are protected during a real estate transaction in the Golden State.