What is an SPDS?
It’s a Seller Property Disclosure Statement and if you’re buying an Arizona home you NEED these tips!
Welcome back! I’m Lindsay, with the Wise Move AZ Team at RealtyONE Group. If you want to stay up to date on all things Anthem and Real Estate then you need to subscribe to our YouTube Channel. Pro Tip: You’re also going to want to hit that little bell icon so that you’re the first to know when our new videos are posted every single Thursday!
As your Anthem, Arizona REALTORS® we have worked with a number of families to ensure a smooth purchase of their home. A lot of work goes into purchasing a home and making the most of your due diligence period is absolutely imperative. One important piece of the due diligence period is receiving and reviewing the Seller Property Disclosure Statement. You may hear the Seller Property Disclosure referred to as the SPDS or ‘spuds’. Truthfully, it doesn’t matter what you or your agent calls it, as long as you take it seriously.
At the end of this post we will give you access to a blank copy of the Seller Property Disclosure to ensure you are well prepared when the time comes to buy your Arizona home, so stick around!
The SPDS is designed to protect the Seller and educate you, the Buyer. This 8 page documents gives the Seller the opportunity to disclose important information about their home to you. Why is this important? Sellers are legally obligated to disclose all known material facts about the property to the Buyer. Also, on a lighter note, by putting everything is writing and handing it over to potential buyers it can help reduce the number of questions going back and forth. It’s a win-win, I promise.
The SPDS will basically tell you a story about one of the biggest purchases of your life. To say it’s important would be an understatement. In this document you will find information about the Seller’s ownership, building and safety information, utilities, environmental information, sewer or wastewater treatment, and more.
With all that being said, here are our top 5 tips to help you, the Buyer, get the most possible out of this one document during your due diligence period:
#1: Read it Thoroughly
The key to the SPDS is to read it! You don’t want to move in and discover a leak in the roof that was disclosed to you in writing during your due diligence period, but you just didn’t bother to read it. It happens! Take the time to read the SPDS cover to cover and make note of anything you are concerned about.
#2: Ask Questions
If there is anything you don’t understand or that doesn’t sit right with you, ask questions and do your research. One awesome tool to help you verify information is the Buyer Advisory. We did an entire video on the Buyer Advisory, so feel free to check that out here. If you aren’t able to find the answers you need or aren’t sure where to look let your REALTOR® know and they may be able to point you in the right direction. They can also liaise with the Seller’s agent if you need more information from the Seller directly.
#3: Verify, Verify, Verify
The SPDS is completed by the Seller, which means it’s subject to human error and inaccuracies. If something is really important to you, verify it! What do I mean by this? Well, if you are only buying this home so that your kids can go to a certain school, be sure to call the school to verify that the home is in the catchment area for that school, regardless of what the SPDS says. The Seller may never have had school aged children in the home and is just guessing! Another important piece may be verifying HOA dues. Do not leave anything up to chance. If it is important to you, do your research and verify it!
#4: Sign It
You will be required to initial every page of the Seller Property Disclosure Statement, as well as signing and dating the last page. But what does your signature on this document mean and should you be concerned? No, by signing you are simply acknowledging receipt of the document. Your signature does not mean that you accept the Disclosure or that you are ‘OK’ with the things they are disclosing. If there is anything disclosed in the SPDS that you disapprove of, you can include it in the BINSR or if it is more than you can bear, you are not required to move forward with the contract. I will be talking more about the BINSR process in future videos so make sure you subscribe to our channel and hit the bell icon so that you are notified when those videos are released.
#5 Share it with your Inspector
If anything in the SPDS causes you concern, be sure to share it with your inspector prior to the inspection. Let them know what things you are worried about and have them inspect those elements more closely. For example, if the Seller disclosed a leak at the front door during last year’s monsoon season, you will want the inspector to pay close attention to how the leak was repaired as well as how any damage was repaired.
So there you have it! What do you think? Are you one step closer to being ready to your Arizona home?
If you’d like to view a copy of a blank SPDS simply click here. This will help you to understand what important pieces to watch out for once you receive a completed SPDS from the Seller.
See YOU, next Thursday!