What happens ifa rented water softeneris not excluded in a counter offer but the seller’s disclosure statementhad that it didn’t convey with the house?

UPDATED: Jul 21, 2011

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What happens ifa rented water softeneris not excluded in a counter offer but the seller’s disclosure statementhad that it didn’t convey with the house?

I represent a seller who has a rented water softener and did not exclude that in the counter offer to sell her house. Nor did she include the fact that the cable boxes get returned to the cable company after the closing. She did disclose on the seller transfer disclosure statement that the home did not come with a water softener – she didn’t even say there was a rented one there – just did not mark the box that the house had one. Now, in escrow, buyer says she expects the softener to be there at closing. Who is right? Will the seller be forced to buy a water softener for the buyer?

Asked on July 21, 2011 California


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

In the transfer disclosure statement signed by the selelr, if the seller stated that the water softener does not come with the house, it means one of two things. First, the seller is taking it on sale, or second, it is rented.

The buyer should have made further inquiry as to the specifics as to this disclosure to the seller before close of escrow.

From what you wrote about the disclosure, it seems that the buyer was put on notice by the seller before close of escrow that the water softener for the home was not to remain. Buyer looks like he or she will have to buy or rent a water softener at his or her own cost.

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