When buying an Arizona home with a shared water well, there are certain considerations to keep in mind. Many homebuyers have questions and concerns about shared wells when they’ve never lived in a house that shares a water well. By definition, a shared well is a water well that services two or more homes for residential purposes.
If you are consider buying a home that has a shared well, there are a few important things to keep in mind:
- Is there an existing shared well agreement? Is it up to date? Accurate?
- What are the monthly operating costs?
- Are there any built-in contingencies for remediation, repairs, maintenance, and quality testing?
- Are there any restrictions placed on your system? For instance, does the shared well agreement prohibit the use of swimming pools? Or does it prohibit
- Are there records of periodic inspections and repairs?
inspect the well prior to the purchase
A well inspection is not a legal requirement to purchase a home but
It is important to note, that Arizona home inspectors do not conduct inspections of water wells. They inspect every square inch of the home but not the well. Therefore, the well could have serious problems and you would never know!
It is imperative that a shared well is functionig properly, otherwise dozens of people may be without water!
Here are a couple of things you should find in your shared well agreement:
- Specification of the cost involved to share your pump in regards to power, repairing, testing and inspecting.
- Requirement for corrective courses of action if testing reveals a deficiency.
- Prohibit the use of the well water by any party for any reasons other than for bona fide domestic usage.
- No additional residences may connect and use of the water.
disclosure forms provided by AZ realtors
The Arizona Association of Realtors as a trade association has enacted standards for the management of all exempt wells in the state of Arizona during sales and transfer of real estate. This fantastic idea is being done by the Realtors association without authorization by the Arizona Legislature or ADWR.
The Arizona Realtors group has authorized and put into place two forms that all Realtors must use to inform buyers of real estate served by private water wells. They must be used for each transaction involving private or shared water wells. They are the Domestic Water Well Addendum and the Domestic Water Well Water Use Addendum Seller’s Property Disclosure Statement. They promulgated these forms because it is essential information necessary for the protection of the health, safety, and welfare of home buyers relying on exempt wells.
The first, the addendum, must be signed by both the seller and the buyer. This informs the buyer that the Arizona home is supplied with water from a residential water well. The second form, the disclosure statement, provides the buyer with the best detailed information about the well that the seller can provide. Most well owners are not familiar with the information requested on the form. The “best information that the seller can provide” is what a buyer gets from this form.
prepare early to avoid delays in closing
A proper shared well agreement requires the signatures from the owners of each property that will be receiving water from the well. Hammering out the details of the agreement can be an incredible hassle. Sometimes a homeowner will dig in their heels over a certain provision. The back and forth can cause the sale to be delayed if the parties do not plan accordingly.
the importance of maintaining proper shared well records
Shared well agreements and their records can often become more and more innacurate. New owners will began accessing the well without written record or the parcel size / shape is changed because it has been split.
If you are looking to draft a new shared well agreement or make amendments to an existing shared well agreement, then contact us at 480-702-1608 or message us HERE.
* The information provided is informational only, does not constitute legal advice, and will not create an attorney-client or attorney-prospective client relationship. Additionally, the Dunaway Law Group, PLC limits its practice to the State of Arizona.