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Time-of-Sale Housing Inspection Ordinances

Bloomington Minneapolis St. Louis Park
Crystal New Hope St. Paul
Golden Valley Osseo South St. Paul
Hopkins Richfield  
Maplewood Robbinsdale  


Bloomington
The program provides potential purchasers with information about the condition of a dwelling and requires the correction of immediate hazards. An inspection and a report are required for all single and two-family dwellings, condominiums, townhouses and mobile homes. Multi-family rental buildings over 4 units are not included. The property must be inspected and a report form completed prior to offering the property for sale.

The Housing Evaluation Report must be available for review by potential purchasers at all times when the property is offered for sale. The seller can choose a licensed independent evaluator licensed by the city of Bloomington. The city maintains a list of all licensed inspectors. Only those items which pose an immediate hazard to the occupants of the structure are required to be repaired.

Other deficiencies are noted in the Housing Evaluation Report, but do not require correction. When hazardous items are identified by the inspector, the City of Bloomington follows up to determine whether the hazardous condition has been corrected. Hazardous conditions must be corrected and approved by the city before the dwelling is occupied. If the dwelling is already occupied, corrective action shall be taken by the owner or agent of the owner.

For more information, call the City of Bloomington Building and Inspection Division at 952.563.8930 or go to www.ci.bloomington.mn.us.

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Crystal
To comply with the city's Housing Maintenance Code, an inspection is required prior to any change in ownership of single and two-family homes. The purpose of this inspection is to provide a method in which to prevent adverse conditions and maintain the value of existing properties.

A Certificate of Housing Maintenance Compliance will be issued upon satisfactory completion of any orders written at the inspection. This certificate is required at the closing on the sale of the property. Once the application for Housing Maintenance Compliance and appropriate licensing fee have been received, the property owner or designated agent will be contacted to schedule the initial inspection. This individual must be present during all inspections. If it is not possible for the owner to meet the inspector for the inspection, please arrange for the real estate agent to meet the inspector at the property.

Even if the property has a lock box, the law prohibits any inspector from entering a property unsupervised, unless it is cleared of all personal property. A re-inspection fee of $50 will be charged if the owner or agent are not present at the scheduled time to admit the inspector. After the initial inspection has been completed, any correction orders will be given to the property owner or designated agent.

Correction orders must be completed within 60 days of the initial inspection. Once the orders are completed, contact the Inspection Department at 763.531.1000 to schedule a re-inspection.

For more information, visit www.ci.crystal.mn.us.

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Golden Valley
I/I Point of Sale: The Metropolitan Council Environmental Services (MCES), which provides regional wastewater collection and treatment for the metropolitan area, requires the City of Golden Valley to reduce peak flows to the regional wastewater collection system.

Effective January 1, 2007, the City of Golden Valley requires all properties to pass a sanitary sewer inspection before they are advertised for sale (see new section 3.31 of the City code). The new point-of-sale ordinance is intended to help reduce peak sanitary sewer flows caused by Inflow and Infiltration (I/I), or flow of clear water into the sanitary sewer system. It allows the city to inspect private properties to ensure there are no illegal connections to the sanitary sewer system that contribute to excess peak flow discharges.

To comply, Golden Valley property owners must obtain a Certificate of Sanitary Sewer Service Compliance from the city before transferring title of property.

Inspection Process: Before any property is offered for sale or transferred, the city must complete a Point of Sale Sanitary Sewer Service Inspection and issue a Certificate of Compliance (permit can be applied for online by clicking "Fees" at the City of Golden Valley website). Any improper connections or significant defects in the sanitary sewer service pipe must be corrected before a Certificate of Compliance is issued. Once a property has a Certificate of Compliance, subsequent sales or title transfers will require an inspection of the sump pump discharge only.

Failure to obtain a Certificate of Sanitary Sewer Service Compliance is a misdemeanor and may result in additional monthly charges on the customer’s utility bill ($500 residential, $1,000 nonresidential) and possible loss of water service.

Fees: The fee for the initial inspection, which includes a televised observation of the sanitary sewer service, is $200 for residential properties and $500 for nonresidential properties. Fees for subsequent inspections of a sump pump discharge are $75. All fees are due at the time of application.

For more information about the I/I Point of Sale Inspection, contact the City of Golden Valley's Public Works department at 763.593.8030 or go to www.ci.golden-valley.mn.us.

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Hopkins
Hopkins has a time of sale housing inspection ordinance requiring a truth in housing disclosure report to be completed by an independent truth in housing evaluator certified to do business in Hopkins. Call the city for the most recent list of licensed inspectors. The ordinance requires inspection of all one to four unit dwellings including condominiums and townhouses. The Truth in Housing Disclosure Report must be available for review whenever the property is offered for sale.

The ordinance does include a section titled, Mandatory Correction of Hazardous Items. Items listed in this section must be corrected if noted on the disclosure report and re-inspected by the city housing inspector. You must bring a Certificate of Approval for the property for sale to the closing. You will not be able to close on the property without the certificate. If there were no items marked as Repair/Replace the certificate will be mailed to the property owner listed on the Truth-in-Housing Disclosure report. If there were repair/replace items found at the property the certificate will be issued to the seller at the time of the re-inspection.

For more information, call 952.548.6320 or visit www.ci.hopkins.mn.us.

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Maplewood
Maplewood requires that a Truth-in-Housing inspection be completed before a property is listed or shown. The ordinance includes single-family, duplexes, condominiums and townhouses. The city maintains a list of licensed Maplewood inspectors. Before a residence can be shown for sale, the owner must have the property evaluated by a truth-in-housing inspector. After the inspection is complete, the owner must have the report on display and available on site for perspective buyers. A copy of the disclosure report must be issued to the buyer before the execution of a contractual agreement.

A housing disclosure shall be prepared by a city approved housing evaluator. The report shall include a) an evaluation by the inspector of the building and the property. The evaluation will include, but not be limited to, items addressed in Maplewood's housing maintenance, siding and junk removal ordinances. The city shall be responsible for determining whether there is an ordinance violation, and a signed statement by the owner related to the condition of the property must be completed.

Owners must have their own truth-in housing evaluation done before listing or property for sale. A truth-in-sale-of-housing disclosure report is only valid for one owner or for one year.

For more information, call 651.249.2300 or go to www.ci.maplewood.mn.us.

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Minneapolis
The purpose of the Truth in Housing Ordinance is to inform the buyer and seller of a home, prior to the time of sale, of any major structural defects or hazards to the health and safety of the occupants. The ordinance requires the repair or replacement of unsafe item related to the heating and electrical systems, water heaters, plumbing cross connections, unsafe gas piping, smoke detectors and lack of required utilities.

The ordinance requires that the seller of single and two family dwellings, townhouses, and first time condominium conversions provide a Truth in Housing Disclosure report or a Certificate of Code Compliance to the buyer prior to signing a purchase agreement. The truth in housing report must be prepared by a certified truth in housing evaluator. The ordinance requires that the completed report is available for inspection at the premises at all times when the dwelling is being offered for sale.

A valid disclosure report must be provided to the buyer at closing. The buyer is responsible to make any required repairs within 90 days after closing. Sellers may decide to complete any required repairs before closing.

For more information, call 612.673.5840, contact the automated information number, 612.673.2489 and request option 16 or go to www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/inspections/TIH-home.asp.

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New Hope
A code compliance inspection is required prior to the sale of any residential property, including single-family homes, condominiums, and apartment buildings. The initial code compliance inspection takes about 45 minutes. During the inspection, the building official looks for items in the home that present safety or maintenance concerns. Following the inspection, the homeowner receives a "fix it" list that spells out the repairs that will be needed to bring the property into compliance with the city codes. The home seller must make the specified repairs and have the home reinspected before a Certificate of Compliance will be issued and the home may be sold. If the seller is physically or financially unable to make the repairs, the home may be sold "as is" if the buyer commits to making the repairs within a specified period.

The Code Compliance Inspection fee is $120. The fee covers both the initial inspection and one re-inspection of the property.

For more information about the Code Compliance Inspection Program, call the Inspections staff at 763.531.5127 or go to www.ci.new-hope.mn.us. Click on Departments, Community Development and then Inspections.

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Osseo
Osseo requires a Truth in Housing Disclosure Report at the time of sale for all single family, two family, and three and four family dwellings including condominiums and townhouses.

No owner or agent for the owner may sell residential properties in Osseo without providing to the buyer prior to the time of sale a Truth in Housing Disclosure Report issued within one year of the time of sale. The report shall be made available for inspection at the property at all times when the property is being offered for sale.

The ordinance requires that items noted as hazardous by the housing inspector on the report must be repaired by the owner prior to occupancy by the buyer. The buyer may elect to make the required repairs with the written consent of the city.

For more information, call 763.425.2624 or email cityhall@ci.osseo.mn.us.

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Richfield
This program requires that residential properties pass a housing maintenance code inspection before the title is transferred. Houses that pass inspection are issued a "Certificate of Housing Maintenance Compliance" which must be presented at the closing of the property.

The Inspection must be completed prior to title transfer (closing). If repairs are needed to meet the housing code, the seller or buyer can do them. Repairs done by the seller must be competed and reinspected prior to closing. If the buyer assumes responsibility for the repairs, certain conditions must be met.

The property can be inspected anytime during the selling process. However, it is strongly recommended that the inspection be done prior to listing or advertising the dwelling for sale. The inspection is done by a City housing inspector.

The inspector visually checks the condition of the roof, foundation, doors, and windows, exterior paint or covering, electrical system, plumbing system, chimney, and heating/cooling system. A written report is provided at the end of the inspection listing items to be repaired.

Repairs made by the seller must be completed and inspected before the closing. If you own and occupy the home, you may do the work yourself. All repairs must meet City codes. Code violations must be corrected even if the home does not sell and is taken off the market.

For more information, contact the Inspections Division at 612.861.9882 or go to www.ci.richfield.mn.us.

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Robbinsdale
Enforcement of Robbinsdale's Point of Sale ordinance began May 1, 2009, and requires a disclosure report prepared by independent certified evaluators (hired by the seller). Under this code, licensed evalulators would walk through homes prior to their being placed on the market and shown for sale. This applies to all single-family homes, twin homes, townhouses, and condominiums (except new construction). Reports would indicate items which are acceptable, below standards and require repairs. Required repairs include imminent structural failures, unsafe electrical and plumbing systems, hazardous or unsanitary conditions, and lack of basic items (sinks in kitchens, toilet facilities, etc.). For more information, see links below or contact Rick Pearson at 763.531.1266.

The Point of Sale (POS) inspection must be performed by a certified evaluator. Any person qualified to perform POS or truth-in-housing inspections in the cities of Minneapolis, St. Paul or Bloomington can become certified in Robbinsdale. To obtain certification, an application and documentation of the qualifications from the above cities, insurance, and sign-off of the Code of Ethics form are required. For a list of evaluators currently certified in Robbinsdale, see link below.

Uniform Guidelines | Repair/Replace List | Disclosure Form
Certified Evaluators
| Evaluator Application | Code of Ethics

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St. Louis Park
The City of St. Louis Park requires property inspections whenever a property is sold or ownership is transferred. To ensure you are ready for closing, apply for your inspection before or immediately after you place your property up for sale. A Property Maintenance Certificate MUST be presented to the buyer and title company when the property transfer occurs at closing.

To schedule an inspection, the homeowner or the owner's agent may either call the Inspections Department at 952.924.2588 or go to St. Louis Park City Hall, 5005 Minnetonka Boulevard (three blocks east of Highway 100; located on the second floor - Inspections Department). You may also apply online at www.stlouispark.org (click on Permits).

The fee for the housing inspection includes the initial inspection and any follow-up inspections that may be needed. Inspection appointments are typically available within one to three days. A city inspector will visit your property to check that the siding, roof, garage and interior complies with St. Louis Park's property maintenance code. A typical inspection takes about 45 to 60 minutes. Fees are:

$195 house or townhome
$115 condo
$275 duplex

If the inspector finds no code violations, a Property Maintenance Certificate is issued.

If code violations are found, work orders are issued for the needed repairs. In most cases, corrections must meet the code requirements that were in place when the building was constructed. If a portion of the home was remodeled, the remodeled section must comply with the building code that was in effect when the remodeling occurred. (Exception: smoke detectors are required in all buildings, no matter when constructed.)

In most cases, the seller makes the code corrections. However, buyers may obtain a temporary property maintenance certificate if they sign an agreement acknowledging the work orders and agreeing to make all required code work within a specific time period. Buyers and sellers must use the City's Agreement Form and pay a $50 service fee. In addition, sufficient funds must be put in escrow to cover the cost outlined in the agreement. A city representative must also sign off on the agreement.

After repairs have been completed, a city housing inspector will return for a follow-up inspection to verify that all work meets code. Once this is done, a Property Maintenance Certificate is issued. Certificates are good for one year.

For more information, call 952.924.2588 or go to www.stlouispark.org.

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St. Paul
The City of St. Paul has provided in its Legislative Code an ordinance concerning the sale of housing within the City's limits known as Chapter 189, the Truth-In-Sale of Housing Ordinance. This ordinance provides for a Truth-In-Sale of Housing Disclosure Report that may only be compiled by an independent evaluator who has been tested and licensed by the City.

Failure to obtain a Truth-In-Sale of Housing Disclosure Report before marketing a house for sale, or failure to make that disclosure report available to prospective buyers is a violation of law and is punishable as a misdemeanor carrying up to 90 days in jail and/or a $700.00 fine.

This disclosure report is an overview of the building components and fixtures. It is to inform a prospective buyer of the observed condition of a dwelling at the time of the evaluation. The disclosure report is intended to provide basic information to the home buyer and seller prior to the time of sale; not necessarily detailed information. Prospective buyers may also seek additional opinions from various experts in the inspections field prior to purchase.

One and two-family dwellings, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops require a Truth-In-Sale of Housing Disclosure Report whenever there is an intended change in ownership.

The report is valid for one (1) year from the date on the report and is only valid for the owner named on the report.

The ordinance requires an evaluation be done within three (3) calendar days of a dwelling being offered, listed or posted for sale. The Disclosure Report must be conspicuously displayed at the dwelling that is for sale at all times for review by potential buyers. A valid Disclosure Report issued for the dwelling must be provided to the buyer before or at the time of the sale of the dwelling. It is the responsibility of the owner or the owner's agent to comply with these requirements.

Evaluators are private contractors, not employees or contractors of the City. The City does, however, maintain a list of licensed Evaluators and will provide this list (which includes their phone numbers) to anyone requesting it. You may also contact an Evaluator through a REALTOR® or agent. The City will not recommend an Evaluator.

You may request a list of licensed Evaluators from the City by calling 651.266.1900 or go to www.ci.stpaul.mn.us.

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South St. Paul
When a homeowner is preparing to sell their property they must have a Time-of-Sale Evaluation report on site when showing the property. This property includes single family residences, two-family, multiple-family dwellings and mobile homes located within the City.

A list of Time-of-Sale Evaluators (licensed by the City) can be obtained from the Time-of-Sale Coordinator. Please call 651.554.3250 for the list. The homeowner chooses the evaluator and makes arrangements for the inspection. The evaluator will leave a copy of the report with the homeowner.

Any items marked as “Hazardous” on the report have to be fixed before the new homeowner takes possession. Hazardous items are considered to be those conditions or defects that are likely to cause injury to a person or property if not corrected.

The evaluator has ten days to file the report with the City.

If the report has hazardous items listed on it, the homeowner is sent a copy of the report with the hazardous items high-lighted along with a cover letter informing them to call the Fire Department when all the hazardous items have been corrected.

After the Fire Department has made the final inspection they will notify the Time-of-Sale Coordinator and a letter will be sent to the homeowner informing them that the hazardous items listed have been corrected and inspected and now meet the Uniform Building Code.

A copy of the Ordinance, Evaluators List and a list of Items Commonly Found Hazardous can be obtained from the Time-of-Sale Coordinator or by calling 651.554.3250 or go to www.southstpaul.org.

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Contact Bill Gerst at 952.988.3141 or billg@mplsrealtor.com with questions.

 

 

 

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