“As is” contracts are legal documents which indicate that the seller is selling an item and the buyer is buying an item in whatever condition it currently exists. The buyer is agreeing to purchase the item with all of the faults that currently exist, whether they can be seen or not. The buyer is taking a risk in purchasing the item because of the quality of the goods. The buyer is allowed to inspect the item prior to the purchase but once the transaction has occurred if a defect is discovered the seller is not required to remedy the problem.
An “as is” sale contract however, does not repudiate the seller’s oral or written description or promise of the description of the item at the time of the sale. If the item does not match the seller’s description then the buyer has the right to reject the item.
Two common “as is” contracts are real estate contracts with an “as is” clause, and “as is” contracts with buying or selling a vehicle.
In real estate it is common for sellers to include in the contract of a house an “as is” clause. This clause is intended to be the seller’s way of stating the condition of the property and lack of warranty for the property. The buyer is being given the opportunity to look for any defects in the property and the seller is giving the buyer the responsibility to discover the defects and accept or reject them along with the property. It is extremely important therefore, that the buyer carefully investigates and inspects the property’s liabilities before settling on the purchase. Most buyers will hire a home inspector to inspect the property before the final purchase. It is essential to hire an inspector with formal training and a license in home inspection.
The other common “as is” contract is used when buying and selling a vehicle. When purchasing a vehicle from a dealer and the “As is – No Warranty” box is checked it means that the vehicle comes with no warranties if the vehicle breaks down once the vehicle has left the lot the problem belongs to the buyer. The same is true of private sales if the buyer purchases a vehicle and it breaks down the next day the buyer is responsible. “As is” can be a written or oral contract. However, tort law does come into play with vehicle sales. If someone is injured in the vehicle because you failed to disclose information you are negligent and are in the wrong. In an injury suit the seller would be found guilty.
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