Disclosure of Gunnery Range is Required

By Christopher Combs | May 12, 2024

Question: We purchased our retirement home last August in far north Phoenix near the mountains. Our seller was an investor.  Thus, many of the seller’s answers on the Seller Property Disclosure Statement (“SPDS”) stated “unknown as never lived in house, buyer needs to do own research.” At that time of our home purchase we were unaware that the Ben Avery shooting range was across the freeway, although we went to the home several times before purchasing the home. We never heard gun shots as it was the middle of summer and 110 degrees. We are miserable in our retirement home…


Even if a Seller Knows Nothing about the Home, the Seller Still has to Complete an SPDS

By Christopher Combs | November 5, 2023

Question: My wife’s mother and father bought a home in Avondale 30 years ago. My wife’s mother and father both recently passed away. We have always lived in the Mesa area and, except for the Holidays, we never went to the Avondale home. Under the family trust, my wife is now responsible for selling the home, and she just wants to sell the home “as is” because my wife knows nothing about the home. The listing broker says that, under the standard AAR Purchase Contract, my wife must complete a Seller’s Property Disclosure Statement (“SPDS”). Is the listing broker correct?…


Recourse for Unknown Tenants

By Christopher Combs | May 14, 2023

Question: We recently purchased an investment home in the San Tan Valley for $425,000 cash. When our real estate agent showed us the home, this home had some furniture in the living room and in two of the bedrooms. Our real estate agent said that he thought that was furniture left behind by the last owner. Two days later we signed the purchase contract to buy the home. After escrow closed, and we had the keys, we went to the home with two contractors to start the repairs to the home. To our surprise, there was a family of four…


Listing Agent Has to Disclose Family Relationship With Buyer

By Christopher Combs | November 13, 2022

Question: We listed our North Phoenix home with our neighbor who is a real estate agent and also a Realtor. The next day we accepted an offer to purchase our home from a Limited Liability Company (“LLC”) buyer. This LLC buyer planned to remodel our home, and then “flip” our home to another buyer. Our Realtor recently said that this LLC buyer, however, may now not be able to buy our home because of problems getting a short-term remodeling loan from a hard money lender. While playing golf my husband recently learned from another neighbor that our Realtor’s brother is…


Seller Didn’t Disclose the Short-Term Rental Next Door

By Christopher Combs | June 26, 2022

Question: In the purchase contract for the sale of our Chandler home, there is a provision giving the right for a 10-day inspection. The purchase contract also said that the sale was “as is,” and “no repairs.” After the 10-day inspection period, the buyer deposited $35,000 earnest money with the escrow company. The 10-day inspection period expired, and the buyer said nothing about cancellation. A week later the buyer wants to cancel the contract and get their $35,000 earnest money back because the buyer learned that there is a short-term rental (“STR”) home next door. The buyer says that we…


Mediation Required Before Litigation

By Christopher Combs | January 16, 2022

Question: Before we bought our $800,000 Peoria home last summer, we only looked at the home during the day. We were never told by the seller that next door to our Peoria home was a short-term rental home and that there would be loud parties almost every night. When we complained to the owner of this short-term rental home, he just laughed at us and hung up the phone.  We now want to sell our Peoria home and buy a home in Glendale that is in an HOA community that prohibits short-term rentals.  Our real estate agent says, however, that…


Can Professional Negligence Be Waived In Advance?

By Christopher Combs | August 29, 2021

Question: Three months after we closed escrow on our Peoria home, we discovered major leaks in the bathroom plumbing. One of our neighbors said that two prior buyers of our home had cancelled the purchase contracts when they discovered these water leaks. When we contacted the real estate agent who represented both the seller and us in this transaction, she said that she had no liability because we agreed in the purchase contract to release her from any liability. Is she correct that she has no liability because of this release? Answer: Probably not. Lines 428-434 of the standard Arizona…


Should Barking Dogs Be Disclosed To New Owners?

By Christopher Combs | August 22, 2021

Question: We lived in our Glendale home for more than four years until we moved to our Sun City home. During the time that we lived in our Glendale home, we both worked during the day, as did our next-door neighbors, who had three dogs that were outside and barked constantly during the day. At night and during the weekends, however, the dogs were generally inside our next-door neighbors’ home. Three months ago, we sold our Glendale home. During escrow, the buyers came by our home several times during the day for inspections, and saw and heard the barking. The…