ARTICLES & NEWS

REAL ESTATE AGENCY LAW ARTICLES

A Landlord Has the Right to Reasonable Access

By Christopher Combs | August 9, 2015

  Question:  I am renting a beautiful home in east Mesa.  The landlord is trying to sell the home, and the landlord’s listing agent wants to show the home to a potential buyer.  I have valuable art work and other items of personal property in the home.  Do I have to let the listing agent have access to my home?   Answer:   Yes.  The landlord is the owner of the home, and is entitled to reasonable access to the home.  This reasonable access generally requires at least two days’ notice, and can only be at reasonable times, e.g., between 9:00…

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Disclosure of Fissures Required in Some Cases

By Christopher Combs | July 12, 2015

  Question: We recently bought a ten-acre ranchette in Mesa as a horse property.  Shortly after we closed, my wife was riding one of her horses in the rear portion of our corral, and her horse stumbled and fell.  After we investigated, we discovered that there was a large fissure under the soil that had only been partially filled in before being covered up with dirt.  We then hired an engineer who determined that there was not only this large fissure, but also two smaller fissures under the dirt in our corral.  We wished that we had been warned by…

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Agent Under no Obligation to Report Bad Roof to Department

By Christopher Combs | March 1, 2015

Agent Under no Obligation to Report Bad Roof to Department   Question:  I purchased my home in Queen Creek from an investor last summer.  There was no disclosure of roof problems.  Two months later, I had several major roof leaks.  When I contacted a local roofer to make roof repairs, he said that the real estate agent that represented the investor had contacted him a year ago to make roof repairs.  After he gave the real estate agent an estimate of $2,800, the real estate agent said that was too much money and that the investor decided not to do…

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Compensation Sought Because of Poor Inspector

By Christopher Combs | December 21, 2014

  Question: When we purchased our home in Ahwatukee, the home inspector recommended by our real estate broker did the home inspection.  The home inspector charged us $450.  In the home inspector’s report, the home inspector said that the roof was “acceptable.”  After we closed on our Ahwatukee home, however, we immediately noticed leaks in the roof during even a light rain.  Three different roofing companies have said that the roof is in terrible condition, and that the home inspector should never have stated that the roof was “acceptable.”  The cost for a new roof will be $12,000.  The home…

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Trustee Not Liable for Listing Commission

By Christopher Combs | October 16, 2014

  In Focus Point Properties, LLC v. Johnson, the Court of Appeals recently held that when an individual signs a real estate contract as a trustee on behalf of a trust, that individual is not personally liable for breaching the contract.   In this case, the listing agreement expressly stated that the parties to the listing agreement were the “owner and broker,” and although the trustee signed her own name in the signature block, the name of the trust was printed above, showing that the trustee was only signing in her representative capacity.  The Court of Appeals said that the…

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Attorney Prepares Documents

By Christopher Combs | August 25, 2014

  Question:  I signed a contract to have a house built by a major homebuilder.  I signed this contract without using either a real estate agent or a real estate attorney.  When I purchased homes in Cleveland before moving to Arizona I used a real estate agent and a real estate attorney.  Should I contact a real estate agent or attorney now?  Should I purchase title insurance at a cost of more than $1,100 or should I simply rely on the good reputation of this homebuilder?   Answer:  A real estate agent representing a buyer is primarily involved in locating…

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Is Commission Owed if Offers Are Refused?

By Christopher Combs | January 11, 2014

Question:  We listed our home in Gilbert for $280,000 after our listing broker told us that $280,000 would be a fair price.  Within three days we had seven offers on the home, including two offers for more than $280,000.  We were confused and upset, so we refused all of the offers.  We no longer trust our listing broker, and we want to cancel our listing agreement.   Our listing broker is angry because we rejected all of these offers, and says that, although we did not have to accept any of the offers, we still owe a listing commission of…

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Seller is Not Obligated to Sell, Even After Offer

By Christopher Combs | October 4, 2013

  Question: Two months ago, we listed our north Phoenix home for sale with a real-estate broker because we wanted to move back to Seattle. This list price was $212,000. We have had almost no contact with our broker for the past two months, but last night our real-estate broker brought us an offer for $215,000, which is $3,000 more than the list price. We may move back to Seattle some time in the future, but right now we no longer want to move.   Our real-estate broker told us that, although we do not have to accept any offers…

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