When it comes to selling your property, you want to make it appear as desirable as possible in order for a quick sale at the correct value. But, what happens if the reason you’re selling is because something bad happened there? Do you have to tell prospective buyers?
Here our conveyancing solicitors in South Wales discuss your legal responsibilities:
Do You Have to Tell Buyers a Crime Was Committed in the Property?
The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 (also known as Consumer Protection Regulations or CPRs), details what a seller must legally disclose when marketing their property. This includes pertinent information that could influence a prospective buyer’s decision.
Pertinent information could account for any of the following information:
• Why any previous offers have fallen through
• Any major problems highlighted in previous surveys
• Any pending, approved or declined applications for planning permission
• Any proposals for nearby development and construction
• Whether the property lies beneath a flightpath, is within sight of a motorway or whether a power plant or substation is nearby
• Any public right of ways passing through the grounds
• Any ongoing problems with neighbours, including boundary disputes, or any neighbours known to have been served an Anti-Social Behaviour Order (ASBO)
• Whether there have been any known burglaries in the neighbourhood recently
• Whether any murders or suicides have knowingly been committed in the property recently
• Any outstanding debts associated with the property
• Any known pests in the property or any known issues with problem weeds
When declaring this information, it is important to be accurate and not to leave any details out as any omissions or misleading information could result in criminal charges being taken against the seller or estate agent.
Photos or floorplans must also be accurate – otherwise these may be seen as misleading.
How Do You Determine if Information is Relevant?
There is an element of subjectivity when it comes to deciding what is deemed to be pertinent or relative information and what is not. This is often treated on a case by case basis as there is a substantial grey area when it comes to making these decisions.
For example, the development of a nearby bar or club may be seen as a benefit to a young first-time buyer, whereas being very close could be seen as a negative to someone with a young family.
Generally, if a reasonable person would take a piece of information as a negative factor in their decision making process then it should be disclosed.
If you’re unsure about whether you should declare information about your property, we would always recommend consulting a trained solicitor.
Whereas, if you have any further questions about the conveyancing process, take a look at our conveyancing FAQs here. Alternatively, discover more about our services and how to get in touch with our knowledgeable team from our conveyancing page.
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