MAR Legal Hotline: Disclosure after Property Goes BOM

A frequent question of the MAR legal hotline… What needs to be disclosed to prospective buyers after a property is placed back on the market following a failed inspection?

Chapter 93A states that it is an unfair or deceptive act if a person acting in trade or commerce “fails to disclose to a potential buyer or prospective buyer any fact, the disclosure of which may have influenced the buyer or prospective buyer not to enter into the transaction.” Any newly discovered material defects that a listing agent becomes aware of must be disclosed to a prospective buyer prior to that buyer entering into a contract to purchase that property. If a Realtor® fails to disclose a material defect discovered in a home inspection to future buyers, there may be legal liability.

Realtors® must also be careful not to share an inspection report provided by the initial buyer with subsequent buyers without the permission of the buyer who commissioned the inspection report. The obligation to share material information does not extend to sharing the actual inspection report.