What to Know Before Buying Real Estate “As Is”
The law permits the transfer of property, including real estate in the condition in which it exists (often referred to “as is”). All buyers should be aware of what this term means, and its implications. Under the most commonly used Real Estate Purchase Contracts1 note the following:
Date of Acceptance-The condition of the property is to remain in substantially the same state in which it existed on the Date of Acceptance on the Contract.
Disclosure-Statements concerning the condition of real estate in the sale of most real estate in Illinois are mandated by law. Sellers are required to notify buyers of known conditions of the property, including matters involving safety and health. Some disclosed issues should include flood history, unsafe conditions and environmental issues, boundary line disputes and violations of municipal code. These disclosures provide the buyers with information necessary to make an informed purchase and should be considered when agreeing to an “as is” contract. Where an “as is” real estate transaction occurs, Buyers cannot rely on representations, warranties or guarantees from Seller other than those known defects disclosed by the Seller.
Inspection- In most real estate transactions, under the most commonly used contract form, in an “as is” transaction, Buyers may conduct a home inspection at their expense, but it is merely done for information purposes. There is no legal basis to make repairs or provide credit, but the Buyer may cancel the Contract within a short period of time if the real estate condition is unacceptable.
There are transactions that occur on an “as is” basis. Where circumstances warrant, parties will knowingly proceed on that basis with complete satisfaction. It is important to recognize that the nature of the transaction changes, particularly with respect to remedies available and a Seller’s obligation to disclose. Know the terms of your agreement and seek legal counsel to protect your interests.
If you are looking to purchase a home “as is,” contact our office for high quality representation throughout the process.
1Refers to Multi-Board Residential Real Estate Contract 6.1