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MICHIGAN HOME BUYERS/SELLERS PROTECTED IN PROPOSED DISCLOSURE LAW

 MICHIGAN HOME BUYERS/SELLERS PROTECTED IN PROPOSED DISCLOSURE LAW
 LANSING, Mich., Sept. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Michigan consumers can achieve greater protection when buying or selling a home if the state's lawmakers place into law the use of mandatory property condition disclosure forms. Michigan House Bill 5106, Mandatory Seller's Property Condition Disclosure, calls for the use of such a form.
 MICHIGAN ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS DISCLOSURE LAW FACT SHEET
 WHO: Home buyers/sellers, Michigan Association of Realtors, state
 Legislature
 WHAT: Michigan House Bill 5106 -- Mandatory Seller's Property
 Condition Disclosure
 WHEN: Fall session of House and Senate
 WHERE: Currently in House Consumers Committee, chaired by Rep. Ken
 DeBeaussaert (D-New Baltimore)
 WHY: Michigan consumers can achieve greater protection when buying
 or selling a home if the state's lawmakers place into law the use of
 property condition disclosure forms as called for in House Bill
 5106.
 Places the buyer, seller and real estate agent on a level
 playing field, by providing them with the information necessary to
 complete a well-informed, well-documented real estate transaction.
 Completes circle of protection; state law and Realtor Code of
 Ethics already requires all material defects known by real estate
 agent be disclosed.
 Passage of this legislation will help ensure that one of the
 largest single purchases made in most consumers' lifetimes, their
 home, is accomplished with confidence and meets their expectations.
 "A home purchase is the largest single investment that most people will make in a lifetime," explained Woody King, president of the Michigan Association of Realtors(R). "This consumer-oriented legislation is designed to ensure that everyone is satisfied after the closing of a home sale."
 The Michigan Association of Realtors, supporter of House Bill 5106, is one of the state's largest trade associations, with over 23,000 real estate professionals representing all fields of real estate. The association works to protect the rights of property owners and the health of the real estate industry.
 "When making the commitment to purchase a home, wouldn't it be comforting to know that all known material defects on the property were disclosed to you before making your decision? And as the seller in this transaction, wouldn't it be reassuring to know that you haven't overlooked an item that you may be held liable for later?" King asked.
 Mandatory seller's property condition disclosure can provide that level of consumer comfort and confidence in buying or selling a home. "Seller disclosure is in everyone's best interest," explained King.
 The buyer who is provided with a disclosure form prior to making an offer on property is able to make a more informed purchasing decision. A disclosure form is a handy checklist for buyers, as their concerns about the property's condition are addressed on the spot.
 The seller completing the form not only can limit potential future liability, but can also identify last-minute home improvements that need to be made to help generate the highest price possible for the property. Since buyers know the seller had to make fairly detailed disclosures about the house and pledged to telling everything, the home may be more likely to sell faster.
 Ultimately, since most sellers become buyers, they are beneficiaries of disclosure a second time when they purchase their next home.
 "Because of case law erosion of the legal doctrine of caveat emptor, 'let the buyer beware,' sellers today are obligated to disclose existing defects relating to the value of the property," King explained. "Use of standardized disclosure forms can result in uniform procedures and better documentation for all parties involved in a property transaction."
 "Mandatory seller disclosure completes a circle of protection for the Michigan consumer," King added. "While the use of disclosure forms does require sellers to disclose information about their homes, Michigan Realtors are still obligated to perform all the duties that are presently required by law and the strict Realtor Code of Ethics."
 State law requires a real estate licensee involved in a residential transaction to disclose all known material defects about the property. The Realtors' own Code of Ethics states that "Realtors shall avoid exaggeration, misrepresentations or concealment of pertinent facts relating to the property or the transaction."
 "Seller disclosure provides greater consumer protection by placing the buyer, seller and agent on a level playing field, by providing them with the information necessary to complete a well-informed, and well- documented, real estate transaction," King explained.
 "House Bill 5106 is expected to go before Michigan legislators yet this fall," King said. "You can let your legislators know your views on this issue by writing or calling your state representative and senator. As a consumer, you not only expect, but demand high-quality products and services. Passage of this legislation will help ensure that one of the largest single purchases you make in your lifetime, your home, meets your expectations."
 -0- 9/14/92
 /CONTACT: Janis Haskell of the Michigan Association of Realtors, 517-372-8890/ CO: Michigan Association of Realtors ST: Michigan IN: SU: LEG


KE -- DE017 -- 9213 09/14/92 14:28 EDT
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Date:Sep 14, 1992
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