due diligence

Benjamin Barrett gogaku at IX.NETCOM.COM
Tue Oct 11 05:51:21 UTC 2011

Due diligence is often used in real estate for commercial transactions, which would fit into the below meaning, but it is also used for noncommercial transactions. I recall my real estate agent talking about this concept when issues came up during home buying.

I recall him telling me that no matter how much you research something, you can still go wrong because something nobody has ever thought of before might occur or a disaster might strike. So you do your due diligence (take the reasonable steps to investigate things) before buying and are satisfied that if something goes wrong, you at least make a reasonable effort to avoid problems.

Two examples:

1. Home Buying Due Diligence: Online Property Research Tools for City and County Property Records (http://walawrealty.com/2011/10/online-home-buying-tools-due-diligence-property-research/)

2. Home Inspections (http://homebuying.about.com/od/homeshopping/Home_Inspections.htm)

Knowing exactly what you are buying is probably the biggest hurdle to jump in a real estate transaction yet many people gloss over due diligence and end up regretting it. Here is your guide to an assortment of inspections you might want to consider and conduct before you hand over cash to close.

Benjamin Barrett
Seattle, WA

On Oct 10, 2011, at 9:50 PM, Victor Steinbok wrote:

> OED has a "due diligence" as a 2003 Draft Update under "due":
>> due diligence n. chiefly /Law/ appropriate, sufficient, or proper care
>> and attention, esp. as exercised to avoid committing an offence;
>> (/Business/, orig. /U.S./) a comprehensive appraisal of a business
>> undertaken by or on behalf of a prospective buyer, esp. in order to
>> establish the exact scope of current assets and liabilities, and to
>> evaluate future commercial potential.
> With the multiple high tides of law-related shows on US TV, it may be
> time to scrap the jargon restriction. Case in point:
> http://goo.gl/C3Rlg
>> The answers to my questions were already out there. That's a failure
>> of due diligence on my part. I will try to do better.
> This is from a journalist writing a follow-up on a post asking a
> particular question of newspaper editors that the editors had apparently
> answered in a broadcast statement. BTW, the supposed "Business" process
> cited in the lemma is usually done by lawyers, so it is hard to
> distinguish between the two meanings. The distinction may be more
> historical--do any lawyers (in the UK perhaps?) still use "due
> diligence" in the former sense?
>     VS-)

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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