November 1st didn’t just bring new laws about texting and driving to Oklahoma. It also brought changes to the Residential Property Condition Disclosure Statement used in the sale of real estate. If you don’t know, per Oklahoma Law sellers must complete, sign and date the disclosure form and make it available to a potential buyer prior to accepting an offer. It’s a pretty big deal.
The layout of the previously used form caused questions to often be missed and the wording of the questions were often confusing to both buyers and sellers. Very often, we would have to ask that sellers do-over the form until it was complete and correct.
The new layout is much easier to follow and the questions asked are straight forward.
A few new questions have been added (highlighted above) including;
- Is the property designated as historical or located in a registered historical district? I’m glad to see this addition to the document. designated Historical Preservation (HP) districts in Oklahoma City come with more expectations and rules that have to be followed. It’s important that buyers are aware of that by way of a disclosure signed by all parties.
- What is the floodway status of the Property? This question follows a question asking what is the flood zone status of the Property. It’s important that the two points are now separated. Flood zone refers to the code FEMA and insurance companies use to determine risk and coverage required. Floodway refers to the terrain near a waterway.
- Have you ever received payment on an insurance claim for damages to residential property and/or any improvements, which were not completed? Another great addition to the document. This can affect your ability to insure the property. Insurance companies can get access to the claim history on a property. If they see that a claim was filed, they may ask the seller to show invoices proving the work was complete prior to providing coverage to the buyer. If this is disclosed in advance, you may want to skip the house, write a lower offer or insist that repairs are completed prior to closing.
These new Oklahoma Property Condition Disclosure documents were just released on Monday and will take a little time to make their way into transactions. Homeowners listing their house for sale on or after November 1st will have to complete the form. Homeowners with houses listed for sale prior to October 31st are not required to update disclosures on file. Worth noting, in Oklahoma disclosures have a shelf life of 180 days. After that, they have to be updated.