Thursday, May 7, 2009

Home Buyer Rights

  • As citizens of the United States we have the Bill of Rights and the Constitution to protect us!
  • What protects a buyer of real estate and what are their rights?
  • Let’s review them…keep in mind that local and state laws will have an impact on Buyer Agency and the nature of disclosure.
  • Also bear in mind the statute of fraud requires any real estate agreement to be in writing.
  • This offers the parties the greatest protection under the law.


Buyer has right to...

Choose neighborhood.
Select a lender of their choice.
Acceptable financing, closing costs, insurance, and interest rate.
Exclusive Representation, to use the REALTOR of their choice.
Choose their escrow company or closing attorney.
Choose their home inspector.
Inspect the property, to perform due diligence to their satisfaction
Request repairs or corrections, to resolve objections.
Cancel sale based on Due-Diligence, Financing, or Appraisal.
Fnal walk-thru inspection.
Take possession of the property with certain expectations.


Buyer has the right to choose neighborhood.
Even though this seems like a no brainer, it is important to reiterate the buyer should be picking where they want to live. REALTORS and sales agents have absolutely no business trying to tell a person where they need to live or where they think they should live. Stereo-typing, profiling, and steering are all a violation of state and federal laws and the REALTOR code of ethics.

Buyer has the right to select a lender of their choice.
A buyer has the right to choose a lender of their choice regardless of who their real estate agent is, who the listing agent is or who the builder is. Recommendations and referrals from friends, family or REALTORS are a good place to start looking for a great lender. Buyers would do well do ask for and compare good faith estimates (GFE)and Annual Percentage Rates (APR’s) from different lenders. Buyers should ask what type of loan they are being quoted on, ask for help or clarification to understand the different types of loans, terms and their purpose.

Buyer has the right to choose a REALTOR who will represent them exclusivley.
Buyer has the right to choose an agent to represent only them in the purchase of any real estate.
Having exclusive representation offers the greatest protection under the law for the buyer and does not cost the buyer anything. Buyer also has the right to participate in Limited Agency or make a purchase without representation. Buyers should ask their potential agent how their contract may be canceled if they are not satisfied with the service provided.

Buyer has the right to select an escrow company or closing attorney of their choice.
Escrow and Attorney fees vary and are negotiable. Referrals and recommendations are a great place to start.

Buyer has the right to select a home inspector of their choice.
Just like REALTORS, not all home inspectors are created equal. Services and fees vary, are negotiable and a buyer should shop. Referrals and recommendations are a great place to start.

Buyer has the right to inspect the property, perform due diligence to their satisfaction.
Buyer's Due Diligence may consist of and is not limited to Buyer's review and approval of the contents of the Seller Disclosures, and any other tests, evaluations and verifications of the Property deemed necessary or appropriate by Buyer, such as: the physical condition of the Property; the existence of any hazardous substances, environmental issues or geologic conditions; the square footage or acreage of the land and/or improvements; the condition of the roof, walls, and foundation; the condition of the plumbing, electrical, mechanical, heating and air conditioning systems and fixtures; the condition of all appliances; the costs and availability of homeowners' insurance and flood insurance, if applicable; water source, availability and quality; the location of property lines; regulatory use restrictions or violations; fees for services such as HOA dues, municipal services, and utility costs; convicted sex offenders residing in proximity to the Property; and any other matters deemed material to Buyer in making a decision to
purchase the Property.

Unless otherwise provided in the real estate purchase contract, all of Buyer's Due Diligence shall be paid for by Buyer and shall be conducted by individuals or entities of Buyer's choice.
Buyer agrees to pay for any damage to the Property resulting from any such inspections or tests during the Due Diligence.

Buyer has the right to request repairs or corrections, to resolve objections.
Up until the Due diligence deadline, the buyer may request the seller to repair or replace items or negotiate a dollar amount to satisfy the specific objections.

Buyer has right to cancel sale.
Up until the due diligence deadline specified in the purchase contract, buyer may cancel the purchase contract and retain all earnest monies if seller has failed to resolve buyers objections or buyers are not satisfied with the home they are purchasing.

Buyer's Right to Cancel based on Financing and or Appraisal.
At the Buyer's sole discretion, if not satisfied with the terms and conditions of the Loan, Buyer may cancel the purchase by providing written notice to Seller. The Earnest Money Deposit shall
be released to Buyer.

Buyer has right to final walk-thru inspection.
Buyer may conduct a final pre−Settlement walk−through inspection of the Property to determine only that the Property is "as represented." The failure to do a walk−through or to claim that an item is not as represented shall not constitute a waiver by Buyer of the right to receive, on the date of possession, the items as represented. If the items are not as represented, Seller agrees to correct the problem before settlement.

Buyer has the right to take possession of the property with certain expectations.
Seller shall deliver physical possession of the Property to Buyer as follows:
Seller agrees to deliver the Property to Buyer in broom−clean condition and free of debris and personal belongings. Any Seller or tenant moving−related damage to the Property shall be repaired at Seller's expense.

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