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Jan 13, 2015

Junk Removal in a Real Estate Transaction

Did you buy a new property or one in foreclosure? Are you in the process of buying a home?

If you were told by the buyer’s agent that the seller is going to remove all the junk and trash prior to closing, get it in writing before the property is in your name. Otherwise you will own the junk. Then you may incur costs to remove the junk or further assistance from the buyer’s agent post sale. The seller is not legally obligated to remove what’s left behind.

The proper procedure would be for the junk removal to be put in writing as part of the contract, and for it to be gone before closing. If, during your walk through, the junk is still there, refuse to close. If the sellers agree to be responsible for removing trash and clutter after they vacate the premises, there has to be language that establishes their continuing obligation to do so. Post-closing obligations may not survive closing unless there is language in the purchase and sale agreement indicating they will.

Additionally, if the home has an oil furnace, the sellers should provide an environmental audit indicating the property is clean, the tank is in good working order, not leaking, or has been removed.

Few things upset a buyer more than learning the home he/she just bought is trashed or contaminated. We hope this helps. Contact us if you have questions about how we can help.

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