Mandatory "Truth in Sales" Report When You Sell a House in Gardena

(April 27, 2015)


Truth in Sales

When you sell a house in Gardena, there are some steps to take to ensure that you provide "Truth in Sales".  The City of Gardena requires a "Property Information Report".  These reports are good for 6 months and are not required for condos or townhomes.   Failure to offer this information to a buyer is actually a misdemeanor violation, so make sure when you sell a house in Gardena that you request this report early in the process.  This report provides the buyer with a list of any observable violations that the property might have.

Obtaining a Property Information Report

The City of Gardena's Community Development Department requires that a Property Information Report or Waiver of Property Information Report be filed when you sell a house in Gardena. Specifically, according to Gardena's Municipal Code, the seller or the seller's real estate agent is required to obtain a Property Information Report and deliver that report to the buyer no later than 15 days prior to the close of escrow on the sale of the property. Furthermore, the buyer must sign the report and return it to Gardena's Building and Safety Division as evidence of compliance with the municipal code.

What's included in a Property Information Report?

The Property Information Report provides important information about the subject property and its structures. It also provides information on potential restrictions that apply to the subject property. This information is based on a review of the city records, as well as an exterior inspection. And exterior expection inspection costs $215. The report will also identify all permits issued on the subject property and any other zoning restrictions.  

You (or the buyer) can also request an interior inspection be conducted at the time of of the exterior inspection. And interior inspection costs an additional $68. The seller must give prior authorization for the city to conduct an interior inspection.

Property Information Reports contain the following:

  • street address and legal description of the subject property
  • zone classification and authorized use
  • occupancy as indicated and established by permits and records
  • business licenses or permits issued by the city to the occupants of the property, if any
  • variances, conditional use permits, exceptions, and other pertinent letters and legislative acts on record
  • any special zoning or general plan restrictions on uses or development that may apply to the subject property
  • a list of all presently observable violations of housing and building codes
  • as applicable, zoning regulations, or other matters pertaining to the subject property that are a matter of city record


Waiver of Property Information Report

There is a provision for the buyer to waive their rights to the Property Information Report. This waiver must be delivered to Gardena's Community Development Department office at least 20 days prior to the close of escrow on the sale of the property. 

Where to Obtain a Request for Property Information Report?

The Request for Property Information Report is provided here and hardcopies are also available at the Community Development Department located at Gardena's City Hall, Room 101, 1700 W. 162nd Street, Gardena.

Please allow 10 to 15 business days to process the initial request.  There are no rush orders available. For additional information contact the City of Gardena at (310) 217-9530.

The Property Information Report, while appearing like a lot of paperwork and hoop-jumping, will allow the buyer to make informed decisions.  In addition to a property inspection that a buyer will get, this report offers the city's information all on one form.  So, when you sell a house in Gardena, request to have report inspection done early, so if there are any violations that come up, you can correct them prior to selling the property.

Additionally, remember that you can request that the buyer sign a waiver, so that a Property Inspection Report is not completed.  There are instances when the seller does not want an inspection or knows that there are violations on the property.  If that is the case, most likely a cash buyer or investor like me is the best buyer for that situation.  

I often buy houses "AS-IS", meaning there are no inspections, repair requests or work to be completed by the seller.  Most buyers, though, want a house with no violations, in repaired condition.  Mainly because they don't have the money or the time and knowledge to do the repairs themselves.

inherited house

Jennifer Shenbaum

Written by Jennifer Shenbaum

Jennifer Shenbaum is a real estate investor based in Southern California. She is a veteran of the housing market crash of 2007. Best of all, she offers free remodeling ideas to all who ask.

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