Buying Maui Real Estate - doing your due diligence, or J-1 as we call it
When buying property on Maui, whether it be a house, a condo, or some vacant land, you need to do your due diligence. Buyers are responsible for taking the steps to see that they are satisfied with the property they are buying.
On our standard Hawaii Association of Realtors (HAR) forms, the purchase contract has a clause stating how many days are allowed for a buyer to perform their inspections. This is called paragraph J-1. The usual time requested by buyers is 14 days, but it can be whatever you reasonably need under the circumstances. In this time you will be expected to thoroughly inspect the following:
- interior and exterior of any buildings - using a professional home inspector is highly recommended
- all appliances and fixtures, including photo-voltaic systems
- septic system or cesspool if there is no sewer connection
- well and water tanks if there is no public water supply
- fencing and gates, retaining walls
- public records regarding the property and its use
- general disclosures - items that might affect the property such as mold, lead paint or asbestos, neighborhood nuisances, flood zones.
"How do I conduct a home inspection?" If you're working with a buyer's agent on Maui, they can help you by providing names of good home inspectors and making sure you complete your inspections before the time runs out. Your agent will advise you about who to contact for specific items, and can help with scheduling appointments. If you have questions, be sure to ask them right away so you'll have the answers you need to make your decision about moving forward.
"What if I don't like what i find and want to cancel the sale?" In the state of Hawaii you must request to terminate your contract in writing, to all parties, before your J-1 period is up. Your agent will ask you whether or not you want to continue with the purchase or cancel, based on your inspection findings, and will provide you with the means to cancel if needed. If a buyer fails to provide written notice about canceling, then they have waived their right, or in other words, silence is acceptance.
J-1 is an important step in the home buying process on Maui. It's also important to work with a reliable agent who can guide you through the escrow stages and make sure everything goes smoothly. Those first few weeks are a critical time to be sure you are buying the right property that will bring you happiness for many years to come.
If you have questions about the real estate market, about buying or selling a home on Maui, please contact me, a local Maui REALTOR.
call or text me 808 283-0635
Aloha from Maui...