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Definitions & Resources for Real Estate Transactions

This information can be used on it's own to explain important terms and considerations.  It also provides an explanation of some of the information included in the Checklists provided in this site under the Help Page.

All Buyers Explained

  • This is everyone who want to be an owner of the property.

  • Ask them to confirm the spelling of their names.

  • This is usually simple when there are 2 buyers who are married to each other, even if only one of them will be the borrower on the loan.

  • It is more complicated for non-married individuals.  The parties need to seriously consider and discuss exit issues of the relationship terminates.


All Sellers Explained

  • How do you know you have everyone included? Pull the deed. Do not rely upon the tax records.  They are often incorrect.

  • How do you get a deed? All counties have the last 30 years of deeds available on  Other counties have their own deed sites that go back much further.

  • Be wary of a deed that the sellers have prepared themselves - usually when there has been a divorce. These deeds are often not correct. The clue is there is no attorney name in the top left corner of the document. The “Return To” is one of the individuals.

  • Has one of the owners passed away? The deed needs to have the words Joint Tenants with Rights of Survivorship after their names in order to automatically give full title to the surviving owner. 

  • Thomas and Brown can pull a deed using the request form.


Legal Description for Contracts

  • The best legal description is the deed as long as that deed includes everything being sold and nothing more.

  • See the ALL SELLERS section for information and resources to get the deed if you do not already have it.


Notice in the GAR Contract

  • Notice must be IN WRITING and SIGNED by the party (Buyer or Seller) who is giving Notice.

  • Email is a manner of delivery but is not Notice itself unless it contains an actual signature. Text messages are neither Notice or a manner of delivery Notice.

  • Notice must be given using the contact information contained in the Agreement.


GA Seller's Property Disclosure Statement

  • There are 2 options for Seller's Disclosure - the Seller's Property Disclosure Statement (F301) and the Seller's Disclosure of Latent Defects and Fixtures Checklist (F302).

  • There are 2 stipulations to use if the Seller is going to give the disclosure after the Binding Agreement Date (SS 730) or not going to give a seller's disclosure at all (SS 732).

  • Easements, encroachments, boundary line issues are title matters. Buyer should be provided or should request copies of the details. These will be an exception on the Owner's Title Policy.


Lead-Based Paint Disclosure

  • The Seller must complete the disclosure before the Buyer signs it.

  • The deadline for a fully executed Lead-Based Paint Disclosure is the Binding Agreement Date.

  • The federal penalty for mis-disclosure or non-disclosure in 2023 is $21,018.


GAR Community Association Disclosure

  • The Seller must give an actual dollar amount for transfer, initiation and administrative fees or the Seller will pay these fees.

  • There is no warranty for regular association dues.

  • Seller pays for all non-disclosed special assessments.

  • Violations are a title issue and must be corrected prior to closing and confirmed by the association if the Buyer is not accepting responsibility and an exception on their Owner's Title Policy.


GAR Financing Contingency

  • The Buyer should confirm with their lender the type of loan they want to or need to obtain in order to include the correct contingency.

  • The contingencies include requirements to send Notice of Intent to Proceed as soon as it is completed and Evidence of Ability to Close upon request. These are additional important dates that should be tracked by the agent.


GAR Contract Deadlines

  • Deadlines that fall on weekends or holidays may be problematic. Address these early and amend the contract if both parties are willing to do so.

  • All deadlines are calendar days except for the Closing Attorney's obligation to sign the GAR F511 to become the Holder of Earnest Money.

  • The only deadline automatically moves forward if it falls on a weekend or holiday is the Closing Date. A special stipulation can be added to do this with some or all of the other deadlines.


GAR Survival Provisions

  • There are certain items in Section C of the Agreement that specifically survive the Closing.

  • Any amendment or stipulations that may need to survive closing should begin with the words: "The following items shall survive Closing: ..."


GA Contract Consideration

  • "For and in consideration of the sum of Ten Dollars ($10.00) and other valuable considerations paid by each to the other, the receipt and sufficiency of which are hereby acknowledged ...

  • Amendments do not always contain mutual promises. If it is one-sided, consideration language must be included.

  • The blank GAR Amendment to Agreement already includes this necessary language.

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