Can I transfer ownership of a marginally habital house ‘as is’?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I transfer ownership of a marginally habital house ‘as is’?

I hold a land contract on a property in Elk New Link Destination
wnship, Lake County. The contractee
has not paid taxes on the property and a show cause hearing is pending. The
current resident is in default on the contract. The contractee has not maintained
the home and it is likely not habitable. I could pay off the taxes, repossess the
property and resell it ‘as is’ recovering most of my investment. There are other
improvements to the site such as a garage, power, well and sewer. I am not able
to invest the time and resources necessary to make the house habitable. Can I
simply repo the property and resell it ‘as is’?
Thank You,
Jack Vandedrhenst

Asked on January 29, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Michigan


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You can IF:
1) You fully disclose all not-readily or immediately obvous issues to any prospective buyers (and when in doubt, err on the side of disclosure);
2) If you don't have or can't get a Certificate of Occupancy, the buyer agrees to take the property without one--this must be in a written agreement; 
3) The buyer generally agrees in writing to an "as is" purchase.
People are allowed to buy distressed or even condemned and uninhabitable properties to renovate them, flip them, or do a tear down--the key is there must be *full* disclosure and agreement in writing.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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