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Vol. 2007-03 | March, 2007

Real Property – Seller’s Disclosure Statement

Ohio’s Seller’s Disclosure Statement is, in effect, a statutory affidavit. Requirements of disclosure, under Section 5302.30 R.C., effective on March 19,1993, requires sellers of residential real property to make honest, full disclosure, “.in good faith.” , of all known defects, in writing, in an affidavit form, signed by the Sellers and presented to Purchasers.

The new rules apply to “.any transfer of residential real property that occurs on or after July 1, 1993, by sale, land installment contract, lease with option to purchase, exchange, or lease for a term of ninety-nine years and renewable forever. For purposes of this section, a transfer occurs when the initial contract for transfer is executed, regardless of when legal title is transferred.”

The form requires “.a statement of the conditions of the property and of information concerning the property actually known by the transferor; that, unless the transferee is otherwise advised in writing, the transferor, other than having lived at or owning the property, possesses no greater knowledge than that which could be obtained by a careful inspection of the property by a potential transferee; that the statement is not a warranty of any kind by the transferor or by any agent or subagent representing the transferor in this transaction; that the statement is not a substitute for any inspections; that the transferee is encouraged to obtain his/her own professional inspection; that the representations are made by the transferor and are not the representations of the transferor’s agent or subagent; and that the form and the representations contained therein are provided by the transferor exclusively to potential transferees in a transfer made by the transferor, and are not made to transferees in any subsequent transfers. If a transferee of residential real property .does not receive a property disclosure form from the transferor after the transferee has submitted to the transferor or his agent or subagent a transfer offer and has entered into a transfer agreement with respect to the property, the transferee may rescind the transfer agreement in a written, signed, and dated document that is delivered to the transferor or his agent or subagent in accordance with this paragraph, without incurring any legal liability to the transferor because of the rescission, including, but not limited to, a civil action for specific performance of the transfer agreement. Upon the rescission of the transfer agreement, the transferee is entitled to the return of, and the transferor shall return, any deposits made by the transferee in connection with the proposed transfer of the residential real property. A transferee may not rescind a transfer agreement under this paragraph unless he rescinds the transfer agreement by the earlier of the date that is thirty days after the date upon which the transferor accepted the transferee’s transfer offer or the date of the closing of the transfer of the residential real property.”

Not one shred of evidence supports the notion that life is serious.


AUTHOR / EDITOR: J. NORMAN STARK is an Attorney-at-Law, a Registered Architect, (AIA, NCARB) Registered Landscape Architect, Interior Designer, Planner and Senior Appraiser (ASA), admitted to practice law before the Bar of Ohio, the US District Courts, Ohio and Illinois (Central Dist.), the US Court of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court. He is a Mediator, Arbitrator and Litigator with experience in Business, Construction Law, and Public Works, and with additional experience in Real Estate, Construction Attorney (Legal Project and Crisis Management), and as an Expert Witness (Forensic Architect). His office is in Cleveland, Ohio.