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4 important things to know about purchasing a new home in Arizona

Buying a new home in the Scottsdale area is a little different than buying a resale home. As a new home buyer, there are 4 important things you should understand about the process:  1) the role of the public report, 2) how your earnest money will be treated, 3) who, if anyone, will be representing your interests in the transaction, and 4) how you can do some background research on the builder or developer BEFORE you enter into a contract to purchase.

Purchasing a home in Arizona? Don't sign on the dotted line without a Realtor representing your interests.

Purchasing a home in Arizona? Don’t sign on the dotted line without a Realtor representing your interests.

1. Public Report – The Arizona Department of Real Estate mandates that all subdivisions must supply a public report to the consumer. Actually it’s the law, and if you are a buyer that’s a good thing.
This disclosure is a formal document and part of the real estate transaction, and by signing it you have said you have received the information, which is an implication that you have read it.
The Public Report is designed to inform the consumer of such things as:

  • Flooding
  • Drainage
  • Adjacent land and uses
  • Utilities, including electricity, telephone, gas, water, sewer
  • Common community and recreation facilities
  • Improvements
  • Local services and facilities, including schools, shopping facilities, public transportation, medical facilities, fire protection, ambulance service, police protection and garbage services
  • Taxes and assessments
  • Homeowners association details

So be sure to set aside some time to read it, and while doing so jot down any questions you may have for the developer. You can also talk with your Realtor or call a Subdivision Representative at the Arizona Department of Real Estate at (602) 71-7750 if your questions aren’t fully answered by the developer.
2. Earnest Deposit – If the builder or developer is not placing your earnest money deposit in escrow, the funds may be placed in the builder’s or developer’s general funds account, and you could lose the money if the builder or developer declares bankruptcy or goes out of business. However, if the funds are not going to be placed in escrow, that fact must be stated and requires the buyer’s acknowledgement.
3. Contractor complaints – You can check out the home builder’s history by contacting the Arizona Registrar of Contractors to see if there have been complaints filed against the contractor, whether any are unresolved and whether the builder’s license has ever been suspended or revoked. This is all public information.
4. Buyer representation – If you walk into a developer’s sales office unaccompanied by a Realtor, be aware that you may not be able to have your Realtor represent your interests in any transaction that you enter into with that builder (your Realtor must accompany you on your first visit.) In addition, be aware that the sales agent is the broker for the builder and will not be representing you.
Since the sales agent for the builder has a fiduciary duty to the builder, and not to you, your best bet may be to consult with the services of a Realtor for buyer representation BEFORE stepping inside a sales office.
The Matheson Team‘s commitment is to ensure that every transaction is in the best interests of their clients – call us today at 480-405-4228 or fill out the contact form below if you’re looking for new or existing homes for sale in Scottsdale.
Don Matheson
Realtor | Founder
The Matheson Team – RE/MAX Fine Properties
21000 N. Pima Rd., #100, Scottsdale, AZ 85255
[email protected]
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