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Our goal is to save you hours of work during your real estate transactions in order to give you the advantage to solely focus on bringing more clients and expanding your business. This blog is dedicated to helping you grow and address some of the technical questions we repeatedly get from real estate agents and their clients.

We are true believers that knowledge is power! Knowledge breeds confidence and we want you to be all geared up when getting listings, explaining documents and answering common questions your clients may have during the transaction process.

Learn about the meaning behind disclosures and advisories

TDS- Real Estate Transfer Disclosure Statement

This video will give you a run through of the different sections of the TDS (Transfer Disclosure Statement) form use in the State of California. Below are three reminders and pieces of wisdom from our team:

  • The TDS is a Statutory Disclosure and waiving it is prohibited by Law.. unless the seller is exempt from the obligation.
  • Per the Residential Purchase Agreement under item 14.A, the seller has 7 days after acceptance to deliver this and all disclosures to the buyer unless other periods have been agreed in writing.
  • Most important of all! Section 1102.3 of the Civil Code addressed on the bottom of page 3 of the TDS.. gives the buyer the right to rescind a purchase agreement for at least three days after the delivery of the TDS so it is imperative for the seller to act within the agreed timeframes!

Keep in mind that there is no right or wrong answer, however, the seller is responsible to complete each question to the best of knowledge.

SPQ- Seller’s Property Questionnaire

Note that the SPQ (Seller Property Questionnaire) is not a substitute for the TDS (Transfer Disclosure Statement) but a means for the sellers to provide additional information about the condition of the home.

It is advisable to never waive the SPQ form from real estate transactions as it is protection to both the seller and the buyer.

At BloomFile, we have the seller complete all disclosures required by the State of California, local laws and property built.

  • We review line by line to make sure the seller has answered all questions.
  • We verify the seller has provided the explanations necessary to each statements marked as “yes”.
  • We take responsibility that all disclosures are turned in on time per the contract timelines.

After all, we know that unless it’s a party!! No one in real estate appreciates surprises.

ESD- Exempt Seller Disclosure

This is probably the most misconceived disclosure we come across during escrow.

Per law, the reasons mentioned are the only scenarios a seller can waive the TDS (Transfer Disclosure Statement) from the real estate transaction.

Not having ever lived in the property is not an acceptable exemption and the seller is still liable to turn in all disclosures.⁣

This is a major detail that cannot be overlooked, remember that as real estate agents, the property disclosures are also a protection to you and your peace of mind.

AVID- Agent Visual Inspection Disclosure

Word to the wise- Avoid using phrases such as:⁣⁣ “In good condition”, ”All looks great”⁣⁣, ”Nice size living room” ⁣.. Such statements can be subjective and possibly challenged.

The AVID (Agent Visual Inspection Disclosure) is not a place to note any admiration or personal opinions about the home.

When it comes to this form, facts are your best friend!!

..And when there is nothing to note well.. leave it blank

EQ- Earthquake Hazard Report

It is advisable to still deliver a copy of The Homeowner's Guide to Earthquake Safety Booklet in all real estate transactions even if the property is built after 1960 as it covers the steps to take before, during and after an earthquake.

If the seller is unsure if the property is located in an earthquake zone, the Natural Hazard Disclosure (NHD) report will reveal that. California State law requires the seller to provide the buyer with a Natural Hazard Disclosure statement that designates whether the home they are selling is located in a hazard area. Hazard areas include flood, fire, earthquake fault and seismic hazards zones. The NHD report can be purchased through a third party company and be paid at closing through escrow.

FLD- Lead Based Paint

Note that after the delivery of the Lead Based Paint Hazards Disclosure (FLD), the buyer has 10 days, unless otherwise agreed in the purchase agreement to conduct a paint inspection or a risk assessment.

It is recommended to hire a trained and certified testing professional who will be able to advised if the home currently as any lead hazards from lead in paint, dust or soil.

There are state and federal programs in place to ensure that testing is done safely, reliably and effectively. You can call 1800-424-LEAD for a list of contacts in your area

ENV- Environmental Hazards Booklet & Receipt

For your review, you can find a copy of the booklet on the following link

WCMD- Water Fixtures & Carbon Monoxide Detector Notice & WHSD- Water Heater & Smoke Detector

In California, it's customary for the seller to pay for the installation of smoke alarm detectors, carbon monoxide and water heater bracing.

If required by local law, the seller is to provide written statements of compliance for such items along with any other minimum requirements such as government inspections, reports and retrofit standards before the close of escrow.

It is advisable to verify what are the mandatory government requirements for the specific location of the property and negotiate such items in the purchase agreement to confirm they will be done at closing.

MCA- Market Conditions Advisory

As a real estate agent, you present information and guide your clients based on sales data mostly from the MLS. Such data can sometimes be delayed and prices may go up or down faster than you were expecting.

The Market Condition Advisory (MCA) makes your clients aware of the potential abrupt changes the market may experience. It is advisable to turn in the advisory to both buyers and sellers because at the end of the day one does not have control of the market.

SBSA- Statewide Buyer & Seller Advisory

The SBSA (Statewide Advisory for Buyer and Sellers) Is a total of 14 pages and addresses the following topics:

  • A. Investigation of Physical Conditions
  • B. Property Use and Ownership
  • C. Off-Site and Neighborhood Conditions
  • D. Legal Requirements (Federal, State and Local)
  • E. Contract Related Issues and Terms
  • F. Other Factors Affecting Property
  • G. Local Disclosures and Advisories