Since our last postings on the subject of disclosure packets, the General Assembly has adopted several minor Code changes to clarify existing provisions:

Delivery by Overnight Carrier  

The Code section providing for cancellation of the purchase agreement within a certain time period after receipt of the resale certificate / disclosure packet previously failed to mention when the purchaser could cancel if the resale certificate / disclosure packet were delivered by overnight delivery service. For both property owners’ associations (“POAs”) and condominium associations, whether self-managed or professionally managed, if the resale certificate / disclosure packet is delivered by commercial overnight delivery service, the purchaser may cancel the contract within three days after receiving it.

The seller or the seller’s authorized agent may choose whether a resale certificate / disclosure packet will be delivered in hard copy or electronically. Such request and instructions must be stated in writing.

Fees  

Virginia Code Section 55-79.97:1 clarifies that the fee for a resale certificate to be sent by electronic mail shall not exceed a total of $125 with a copy to each of the following named in the request: seller, seller’s authorized agent, the purchaser, the purchaser’s authorized agent, and not more than one other person designated by the requestor. (Previously the $125.00 fee was for no more than two electronic copies.)

For condominium associations and professionally-managed POAs, no additional fee shall be charged for access to the association’s or common interest community manager’s website. (Section 55-509.7.F. already provides that no self-managed association may require a requestor to pay a fee to use the providers’ electronic network or system.)

Electronic Delivery  

If the requestor asks for electronic delivery of a disclosure packet or resale certificate, it shall not be delivered in hard copy. If delivered electronically by a website link, the link must be available (not expire) for 90 days. The preparer may not charge further during the subsequent 12-month period except for an update fee not to exceed $50.00 after the 90-day period has expired.

Consistent with Section 55-79.79:1, Section 55-79.79 also now provides that, if the seller or his authorized agent requests that the resale certificate be provided in electronic format, then they may request that it be provided to seller, seller’s authorized agent, the purchaser, the purchaser’s authorized agent, and not more than one other person designated by the requestor.

Paying for Resale Certificates at Closing  

At closing, the settlement agent shall escrow sums sufficient to pay for any fees charged for disclosure packets, resale certificates and updates. Since associations and managers are prohibited from requiring payment for such documents upon request, this new provision ensures that payment will be taken care of at closing with settlement proceeds.