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Did you know that under the GCAAR contract documents the seller is generally responsible for fixing anything that breaks during the post settlement occupancy?

February 26, 2016

The GCAAR Post Settlement Occupancy form (form 1309) states that the seller “agrees to deliver the property vacant, clear of trash and debris, broom clean and in the condition required under the contract and this Addendum” (emphasis added). Under paragraph 7 of the GCAAR Sales Contract, the buyer and seller agree to the condition in which the property will be delivered at the time of settlement. The options are that the property will be in “substantially the same physical condition” as of the: “Date of Offer,” “Date of home inspection,” or “Other”.  Thus, the condition that the parties agreed to have the property delivered in at settlement remains the condition that the property must be delivered in at the end of the post settlement occupancy.

For example, if the parties agreed that the property would be delivered in the same condition as it was at the time of the home inspection, and the hot water heater was working at the time of home inspection, but stopped working the day before the seller vacates the property, the seller is responsible for returning the hot water heater to the condition required under the contract. This also highlights the importance of being careful about paragraph 7—in most circumstances you will want the property delivered in the condition it was in on the “Date of home inspection,” so there is a third party record of the condition of the property.

If you have any questions regarding post-settlement occupancies or the contract, contact one of the residential settlement attorneys listed below.


Matthew D. Alegi
David M. Kochanski
Marc D. Lipman


For more information regarding our Residential Real Estate Settlements Group or our general real estate transactions and litigation practice, please contact the Group Chair at 301-230-6574 or

This publication/newsletter is for informational purposes and does not contain or convey legal advice. The information herein should not be used or relied upon in regard to any particular facts or circumstances without first consulting a lawyer.