These articles gives a general overview only and the legal position at the time of writing them. It cannot be relied upon in any particular case. Specific legal advice must always be considered to include consideration as to whether the legal position contained in this article has changed since going to print.
Sellers Property Information Form
Moving house is a costly business at the best of times. But if when you’re selling your house you fail to disclose something to the buyer that you should have mentioned it could prove financially disastrous. Any omission of information alternatively incorrect details will find you on the wrong end of a claim under the law of misrepresentation and/or breach of contract which could costs you thousands of pounds.
Sellers are required to complete a Sellers Property Information Form (SPIF) before they exchange contracts. The form warns that the buyer is entitled to rely on the information it contains, and that if the buyer is given incorrect information he or she may be able to claim compensation from the seller or even refuse to complete the purchase. Essentially, it forms part of the contract between the buyer and seller and so needs to be taken seriously.
“Too many people fill in the SPIF without due regard to its significance,” says Nita King, solicitor in the commercial litigation department of Wiltshire-based Lemon & Co.
“Sellers often think that it is all right to omit the bad things about their house and fail to disclose them in the SPIF. This is often motivated by a fear that they won’t achieve a sale if they do disclose such things.”
Nita says more and more disgruntled house-buyers are resorting to legal action because they feel that some important fact was withheld from them.
“A recurring problem seems to be the relationship people have with their neighbours,” says Nita. “If you’ve had a dispute with your neighbour about something and especially if you’ve written to them about it then it is likely that you’ll have to inform your potential buyer. If you don’t you risk a claim from them in the future. This could be several years after the property was sold though, so don’t be fooled into thinking the problem has gone away once you’ve moved out. The buyer would be entitled to and would claim for the loss suffered (as a result of your failure to disclose), commonly, the reduced value in the property. That could be an awful lot of money!”
We, at Lemon&Co can advise you upon any such breaches of your seller, which has resulted you in expenditure or loss of value of your property.
This article gives a general overview only and the legal position at the time of writing this article. It cannot be relied upon in any particular case. Specific legal advice must always be considered to include consideration as to whether the legal position contained in this article has changed since going to print. For further information and advice, please contact Marianne Johns on 0800 135 7917 or alternatively by email on Marianne.Johns@lemon-co.co.uk.
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<p><strong><a href="http://www.lemon-co.co.uk/article_sellers-property-infoform.php">Sellers Property Information Form</a></strong><br /> Sellers must complete a Sellers Property Information Form (stating buyers are entitled to rely on the information it contains) before exchanging contracts....</p>