When selling a property, broken fixtures can create dispute.

Why you should disclose broken fixtures on the Offer and Acceptance

If you’re aware of a fixture that is not working and will not be repaired before settlement, disclose it in the Offer and Acceptance to avoid incurring the cost of repair.

In a past settlement case, the buyers discovered at final inspection that the rangehood above the stove was not working. Their contract included a vendor warranty stating that all gas, electrical and plumbing fixtures and fittings would be in working order, so the buyers requested that the rangehood be fixed.

The seller, however, had previously informed the selling agent that the rangehood was broken and that they wanted to sell it ‘as is’. They were not prepared to fix it now.

In the end, to maintain a good relationship with the seller and to ensure the property settled on time, the agent paid the hundreds of dollars needed to repair the rangehood out of their own pocket.

With some foresight, this situation could have been avoided. Had the agent included a special condition on the contact stating something to the effect that “the buyers are aware the rangehood is not in working order and accept that it will not be fixed”, they could have moved responsibility for the repair to the buyers. *

To avoid having to pay for costly repairs, disclose any broken gas, electrical and plumbing fixtures and fittings to the buyer on the Offer and Acceptance.

* This is general information and does not constitute legal advice. Please see a legal professional for detailed advice on preparing contracts.

Image by Nicole Vaughan via Flickr.