A Really Expensive Typo
I will give you an example of an extreme situation that happened to me early in my real estate career. The condo had been listed for a long time. It had recently changed listing agents and the seller disclosure was the same except that a new date was added and the seller re-initialed the documents for the new listing agreement. The MLS sheet AND the disclosure both stated that a washer and dryer would be included.
Problem was, there was no washer and dryer in the unit to be included, they were already gone. The listing agent never corrected the information, almost as if they didn't notice that they were not there. I might even venture to guess that the listing agent had never been to their new listing as all of the photos portrayed a lived in version of the condo prior to the seller's relocation. In fact, they were the same photos used on the previous listing. That is a whole 'nother blog post! :)
My buyer and I obviously noticed that there was no washer and dryer in the unit, and we discussed that since there were no appliances, it must be an error. I didn't feel it was necessary to clarify the mistake or "help" the listing agent or the seller in correcting their obvious mistake. Or so I thought.
However, the buyer's father was an attorney. Our purchase contract states that the MLS sheet and the items on the seller disclosure states the items included and he expected the seller to provide a washer and dryer for the buyer to be included in the sale. It didn't matter that it was common sense that since there were no washer and dryer when we viewed the condo, that it would not be expected that a washer and dryer would be added.
It went to mediation, and guess what? The listing agent and seller paid for a new washer and dryer to be installed in the condo prior to closing.
An expensive typo to say the least. I learned to ask the obvious questions of my sellers and to talk about them with my future buyers as well. Mistakes happen.
Now most buyers, would NOT do that. They would know that it was a mistake and would not expect that. But some will and you don't want to take that chance either way. Attention to detail is important, so if your situation changes, make sure that all of the documents are updated to reveal your true intentions. Because I don't want to buy the seller or the buyer a new washer and dryer.