In our area, the custom has become that wherein the Seller of a property, provides any potential buyer with a Sellers Description of Property form. This form typically 4 or 5 pages of questions, requires that the Seller disclose any and all latent defects, flaws, and encumbrances of record to the buyer. Such a disclosure is in the best interests of both parties. For the Buyer, it provides an accurate understanding of all of the potential issues with the property. For the Seller, a signed "Sellers Disclosure" proves that all issues were, in fact, disclosed. This way, it's far more difficult for them to sue years down the road, claiming that you failed to disclose somethine.
To complete this, it is useful if you have the original plot plans, subdivision layouts, title policy, as-built foundation certification, deed, and copies of any required permits necessary especially for "finished basements." This would include but is not limited to Z.B.A. waivers with recorded copies from the registry of deeds, building permits from town hall for any renovation, addition, or modification work, tape surveys, permits for wood-stoves, smoke detectors, and Title 5 septic certs., or sewer hook-ups, lists of municipal betterments, and existing locations of easements.
This disclosure form practice is designed to protect both the buyer, by providing a record of any defects or potential problems; and the seller, from any future liability as a result of defects discovered after the closing of a transaction.
I have the approved forms and can provide you with a set to complete. If you would like more information about this procedure, please contact me.