As you may know, the Virginia Real Estate Board (VREB) recently amended the Virginia Residential Disclosure Statement to comply with the provisions of House Bill 1856, enacted at the 2009 General Assembly. HB 1856 requires the following language to be included in the Disclosure Statement:

The owner makes no representations with respect to the presence of any stormwater detention facilities located on the property and purchasers are advised to exercise whatever due diligence they deem necessary to determine the presence of any stormwater detention facilities on the property, in accordance with terms and conditions as may be contained in the real estate purchase contract, but in any event, prior to settlement pursuant to that contract.

This language imposes no additional obligations on sellers, and simply advises purchasers to exercise whatever due diligence they deem necessary to determine if there are stormwater detention facilities located on the seller’s property. The purchaser can determine the location of stormwater detention facilities by contacting the local zoning or planning office where the property is located.

The new form is currently available for download on the VREB’s website and is effective on July 1, 2009; VAR will add it to our forms library soon. It must be given to all prospective buyers, from and after July 1, 2009, unless the seller is exempt from the requirements of the statute (exemption rules have not changed). This means that Realtors who took listings before July 1, 2009, will have to get their sellers to sign new Disclosure forms and these new forms must be given out beginning July 1. You do not have to give the new form to buyers who received the old form before July 1. Simply replace the old form with the new form starting July 1 and you’re good to go. Remember: It doesn’t matter when you took the listing. If you are giving a form to a prospective buyer on or after July 1, it must be the new Disclosure form, regardless of when you took the listing.