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Important: Don’t just rely on the title of a document to determine its significance!

You may be used to scanning the title of a document to pick up keywords like “LIEN” or “VIOLATION.” But, here’s a case where the document’s title wasn’t as forthcoming. The document is called a Board Order. The first red flag is that it’s from the Environment Control Board and it contains the subject property’s address. Anything from a municipal entity should always be read thoroughly.
The document goes on to say that the homeowners had petitioned to utilize an on-site well rather than connecting to the public water supply system due to how expensive it would be to connect to the public system. The city declined the homeowners’ request, leaving them no option but to connect to the public water supply but with a stipulation: the board granted the petitioners a three year extension of time for compliance.
The order states that the extension of time is not transferable to any other party, and in the event that the petitioners sell the property, the new owner would only have six months to connect to the public water system.
In this case, the homeowners did in fact sell the property and the new owner unknowingly inherited the costly responsibility to connect to the public water system within the six month timeframe outlined in the order. This is an important lesson to always read through documents in their entirety even if they don’t appear to be significant at first glance.