What typical property disclosure forms are required for sales and lease transactions?

Don’t leave anything out when you are preparing an owner to sell a property. There are several forms required under various statutes. Here’s a rundown on the basic forms you need to be aware of.

  • One is the property disclosure form required under the Illinois Residential Real Property Disclosure Act which needs to be completed by the owner of residential property (from one to four dwelling units) to be sold in a transaction that is not otherwise exempt. This disclosure must be made even if the owner does not occupy the property.

The first question on the form asks if the owner has occupied the residence in the last 12 months. If the answer is “no,” it provides an indication to the prospective buyer as to the owner’s knowledge, or lack thereof, about the other conditions disclosed on the form.

The property disclosure form is not required in lease transactions. The key for licensees with this disclosure is to make sure the owner is aware of the form and his or her obligation.  Licensees should not be answering the questions on the form.

  • Another disclosure that must be made under federal law is the lead paint disclosure. This disclosure is required for sale or lease transactions of pre-1978 housing. There are very few exceptions if the property was built before 1978 and contains residential units.
  • The third type of required property disclosure is for radon in most residential sale and some residential rental transactions. The major exception for sale transactions is if the residential unit is on the third floor of a building or above.  Radon disclosure applies to residential properties containing four or fewer units.

In rental transactions, the radon disclosure does not need to be made unless there has been a radon test showing the existence of a radon hazard which has not been remediated. Once there has been a test showing that there is a radon hazard, then remediation by either the party that occupies the unit or by the owner would mitigate against any future radon disclosure.

For more questions and answers, check out the September edition of D.R. Legal News.

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