Plaintiffs have moved for summary judgment pursuant to Rule 56, Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.
In their complaint, and in the affidavit filed in support of the motion for summary judgment, plaintiffs state that they entered into an agreement on August 5, 1972, to purchase from defendant a lot in a subdivision; that the subdivision is subject to the provisions of the Interstate Land Sales Full Disclosure Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1701, et seq.; that before the agreement was signed, defendant had failed to file a statement of record with the Office of Interstate Land Sales Registration, and had failed to furnish to plaintiffs a copy of the printed property report, both of which were required by the Act; that upon being informed of said omissions by defendant, plaintiffs promptly gave notice to defendant of their election to rescind the agreement, as authorized by the Act, and demanded the return of the amounts paid by them for the purchase ($5,300.46).
Defendant's answer admitted that the agreement was entered into; that the lot was in a subdivision subject to the Act; that no statement of record had been filed and that no printed property report had been furnished to plaintiffs; that plaintiffs had demanded return of the purchase money and that defendant had refused payment. Defendant nevertheless asserts that summary judgment is inappropriate because there are genuine issues of fact for trial. Defendant's assertion is based upon its contention that it has substantially complied with the requirements of the Act by verbally giving to plaintiffs substantially all of the information which would have been provided in the printed property report. An affidavit by defendant's president recites several visits by plaintiffs to the site, the discussions between the parties and the information made available to plaintiffs by the affiant. The affidavit goes on to recount defendant's difficulties with the Office of Interstate Land Registration in its efforts to obtain an exemption, and thereafter with respect to the furnishing of information required for compliance with the Act.
In my view nothing in defendant's answer or in its affidavit presents genuine issues of material fact for trial and the matter may properly be disposed of on this motion for summary judgment.
The Act was obviously designed for the protection of the consumer. It is clear and explicit. It sets forth a number of conditions which must be met before developers or agents may make sales of lots in covered subdivisions. Among the conditions is the requirement to register the subdivision with the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and to file a statement of record to be made available to the public. The information to be contained in the statement of record includes, inter alia, the names and addresses of those having an interest in the project; information concerning title, encumbrances, deed restrictions and covenants; range of prices and terms and conditions; conditions of access to the lots and availability of facilities; copies of corporate, trust, partnership or other papers relating to the developer; copies of deeds, forms of conveyance, financial statements, etc.
The Act also requires that a property report, containing so much of the information contained in the statement of record, and such other information as the Secretary may, by rules and regulations, require, must be furnished to buyers before an agreement is signed. The sanction for failure to comply is contained in Section 1703, which provides, in pertinent part:
"§ 1703. Prohibitions relating to sale or lease of lots in subdivisions; voidability of contracts or agreements
(a) It shall be unlawful for any developer or agent