Results Realty Buzz: New Texas law requiring disclosure of fire dection & safety devices!

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New Texas law requiring disclosure of fire dection & safety devices!

Texas law disclosing smoke detectorsI was reading the Texas Realtor magazine and came across information about a bill that affects all of us that live in the state of Texas.  It has to do with fire safety requirements and affects owners, sellers, and landlords of residential property; I would say that is just about everyone.  The new law takes effect on September 1 and is enacted as Texas House Bill 2118.

As a seller the new law requires that seller's disclose information regarding the presence of fire detection and safety devices.  You must disclose smoke detectors, hearing impaired smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors and emergency escape ladders.  Seller's may mark yes, no or unknown.  The Texas Association of Realtors has already changed their seller's disclosure (TAR 1406).  Any homes that are not under contract before September 1st will be required to use the new form.  TAR is recommending that the forms start being used immediately to avoid having to update the notice.Texas law disclosing safety ladders

There are also new fire safety requirements for sellers of one and two family dwellings.  Under the new law a purchaser may require the seller to install hearing impaired smoke detectors.  There are certain requirements that must be met and the law authorizes the seller and buyer to agree as to which party will pay for them to be installed.

The new law also requires all owners of one and two family dwellings to have working smoke detectors installed in accordance with the requirements of the building code in effect in the area where the dwelling is located. 

Along with the fire detection and safety devices that have been changed in the seller's disclosure there is also an additional page that has been added with additional notices to buyers.  The notices include such things as the website where the buyer can check for sex offenders, the open beaches act, square footage measurements and each buyer is encouraged to have their own home inspection. One of the items that I like is a section for the seller to write out who currently provide service to the property such as electric, water, sewer, trash, cable, natural gas, local phone and propane.  I like this information being provided up front especially since we have so many different water districts in our area.

This makes for a very comprehensive seller's disclosure.  It adds another page to the disclosure but I personally like the changes.

Comment balloon 9 commentsMarchel Peterson • August 15 2007 10:35PM


Marchel - In my area the smoke detctor and carbon monoxide dectors must be provided by the seller this is the law.  So far nothing about ladders.  Such devices certainly save lives.
Posted by Jennifer Fivelsdal, Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection ( JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571) almost 13 years ago

Marchel, great idea's. We changed our sellers disclosure last year  but didn't include anything about fires or smoke detectors. I think it is a awesome idea.

It only mentions checking yourself for sex offenders.

Posted by Missy Caulk, Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate (Missy Caulk TEAM) almost 13 years ago


We are going through a revision of all our forms here.  Not just the disclosure but the contract and pretty much everything else is changing.  I spent a few hours a few weeks ago studying them - always something to learn!   

Posted by Rita Taylor, Sanford NC Real Estate - Homes for Sale in Sanford North Carolina (None) almost 13 years ago
Jennifer:  Those devices do certainly save lives.  I'm glad to see our state adding this law also.
Posted by Marchel Peterson, Spring TX Real Estate E-Pro (Results Realty) almost 13 years ago
Missy:  I like the changes in our disclosure, it is now 5 pages instead of 4 but the additional information is good.
Posted by Marchel Peterson, Spring TX Real Estate E-Pro (Results Realty) almost 13 years ago

Rita, we had that major revision the year after I got in to real estate; 9 years ago now.  I went to several classes at that time to learn the changes, it was major.  Since that time the change have been minor; just tweeking them. 

Posted by Marchel Peterson, Spring TX Real Estate E-Pro (Results Realty) almost 13 years ago
Marchel - Do the sellers have to bring these items up to todays code? We have the same thing here for water districts. I always ask my sellers, although it is not in the disclosure.
Posted by Paula Henry, Realtor - Indianapolis Real Estate - 317-605-4174 (Home to Indy Team @ HomeSmart Realty Group) almost 13 years ago


I wish that there had been a seller's disclosure when we purchased our home!  What a nightmare it turned out to be, with basement flooding and mold/mildew.  

Additional information is GOOD! 

Posted by Karen Rice, Northeast PA & Lake Wallenpaupack Home Sales (Davis R. Chant, REALTORS) almost 13 years ago


Great article. Thanks for the info, this is really a helpful post. BTW, if anyone needs to fill out a Seller Disclosure form TAR 1406, I found a blank form in this link This site PDFfiller also has several related forms that you might find useful.

Posted by Paul Davidson over 5 years ago

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