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Purchasing a home in the District isn’t without snares, but soon it could be somewhat less risky thanks to new legislation introduced earlier this week.
At-Large Councilmember Elissa Silverman has proposed a bill that would require sellers to disclose to potential buyers whether a property has ever had a stop-work order on it “during the transferor’s ownership or control of the property.” Residents have expressed concerns over not knowing about a given home’s run-ins with regulators at oversight hearings for the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs, which handles stop-work orders.
Although sellers must currently disclose issues with “plumbing and electricity, infestation, appliances,” and more, according to Silverman’s office, they aren’t on the hook for disclosing deficiencies revealed during construction. So developers would arguably have more of an incentive to follow the law.
“Bad actors find a way to slip through the cracks,” Silverman says in a statement, which notes that the legislation “will not prevent developers from selling homes that have had stop-work orders.” “This bill will create a safety net for homebuyers when that happens.”
Silverman’s bill was co-introduced by Anita Bonds, Jack Evans, and Mary Cheh and referred to a newly minted subcommittee on consumer affairs.