Modern law balances the expectations that real estate buyers conduct their own investigations (often called "due diligence") with the sellers’ ability to hide certain environmental conditions that could adversely affect both the health of those living in the homes and the real estate prices the seller might fetch. Accordingly, residential real estate owners in many states are now required to disclose the existence of certain environmental conditions when selling their property. Requiring disclosure often encourages prospective sellers to remediate known environmental conditions so that no, or limited, disclosure is needed upon listing or sale. States have different rules about what, if anything, must be disclosed when selling residential property.
This map identifies disclosure requirements of environmental conditions in home sales in the United States. Particular conditions explored include: asbestos, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), radon, lead paint, urea-formaldehyde foam insulation (UFFI), underground tanks, hazardous substances, formaldehyde, mold, fuel or chemical storage tanks, and contaminated soil or water. This is a cross-sectional dataset, capturing laws in effect on September 1, 2017.