New plan requiring land risks to be explained before sale

The Japan Association of Home Suppliers has announced plans to require a site geography and history report to be presented to the buyer prior to the sale of a home.

There are approximately 100 home builders who are members of the Association. The committee chairman, also company president of Mita Housing, said that following the Tohoku disaster they had received an increasing number of inquiries from clients concerned about the liquefaction risk and strength of the ground. He believes that providing a geography and history report for each property would provide help to ease the concerns of buyers. Mita Housing is about to introduce this new reporting system into their own business, and many other real estate companies also have plans to do so.

The proposed plan will require members of the Association to provide the following documents to the buyer:

(1) Land and building register related documents (former cadastral maps, land register, old land and building registration)
(2) Aerial photograph
(3) Old maps
(4) Land condition map or subsurface geological map
(5) Liquefaction map
(6) Swedish sounding test data
(7) Liquefaction assessment based on Swedish sounding test
(8) Neighborhood drilling test data
(9) Drilling test data (additional fees)

Source: Nikkei Business Publications, November 29, 2011.