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What’s “due diligence” when you’re buying a home?

| Jul 13, 2021 | Real Estate Law

Buying a home can feel daunting. If you are a first-time home buyer in Connecticut, you are probably doing your homework to ensure you do not make mistakes. After all, you want a home you will love, but how do you ensure your dream home does not turn into a nightmare? Well, this is where due diligence comes in.

What is due diligence?

In the world of real estate, this refers to the buyer’s attempt to investigate the different components of the home either before expressing an interest or before closing the deal. If any defects are detected while carrying out due diligence, the buyer has a right to request that they are fixed before proceeding with the deal. 

There are many things that should happen before you purchase a home. Here are three big steps:

1. Get to know the neighborhood

Before even making an offer, it is important that you drive around the neighborhood to get an idea of what it feels like to live in the area. Have a chat with local residents and ask them if the home value in that neighborhood is rising or falling. Most importantly, check with the local police department if the neighborhood is marked as a low-crime area. 

2. Get home inspections done

There are different types of inspections that must be performed before you buy a home. These include:

  • General home inspection that looks into the home’s overall condition
  • Wood-destroying organisms inspection that looks out for wood rot due to water damage, termites, and other insects
  • Lead inspection that checks for lead-based paint both within and outside the home
  • Radio gas inspection that looks for the presence of radioactive gas within the home

If a home inspection turns up major issues, you may need to walk away — while minor issues can be addressed in your contract.

3. Read the seller’s disclosures

A seller’s disclosure is an integral component of the real estate contract. Connecticut General Statutes require property sellers to make certain disclosures to potential buyers. It is important that you read and understand every clause in this disclosure before making a commitment. 

Purchasing a home is a big deal. While due diligence when buying a home may seem overwhelming, an experienced real estate attorney can walk with you through the home purchase process to ensure that you get the best possible sanctuary for your family.