Whether you’re buying or selling, the process can be complex and overwhelming. Real estate attorneys help you understand your legal rights and obligations.
You can find a qualified attorney through referral from family and friends, or by using online review sites and your state’s bar association directory. Ask about experience and how they handle caseloads.
Buying or Selling a Home
Real Estate Attorneys can assist with buying or selling a home. They will prepare all the necessary documents for a sale and ensure everything is legal from a financial perspective. They can also help negotiate the terms of a contract and review any additional agreements like riders. Depending on the situation they may also attend closing either virtually or in person. They may be hired by a mortgage lender or by the buyer. Who ends up paying the lawyer is usually decided in the contract and can be negotiated.
When it comes to purchasing a home, a real estate attorney can make the process much easier by reviewing all the documentation and explaining any terms that are unclear. They can also provide guidance during the home inspection process to protect a buyer’s interests and advise on what needs to be done if a problem arises. A real estate attorney can also assist with negotiating terms such as a debt removal clause which can be a significant part of the purchase agreement.
Negotiating a Lease or Lease-to-Own Agreement
A lease-to-own or lease purchase agreement offers an alternative route to homeownership for people who may need more time to save and build their credit scores before qualifying for a mortgage. However, both options come with risks, and it’s important to carefully review all paperwork, consider your personal financial situation, and seek legal advice before signing on the dotted line.
A rent-to-own agreement usually consists of two parts: a rental lease and an option to purchase. The lease portion spells out your duties and responsibilities as tenant, including whether the landlord requires you to maintain renters insurance, and the lease term (typically 1 – 2 years). The purchase agreement sets the date by which you need to secure financing and the agreed-upon purchasing price for the home.
Because the contract can be difficult to decipher, it’s essential to have a Real Estate Attorney review the document before you sign. This can help you understand your rights and responsibilities, as well as ensure that all required due diligence is performed, including ordering an independent appraisal of the property and making sure there are no outstanding liens on the home.
Buying or Selling Commercial Property
If you’re planning to invest in commercial property, whether a retail store, office building or warehouse, you need someone who can help you determine what the costs will be and ensure local zoning laws allow for the type of business you want to run. Real estate attorneys can also help you negotiate a lease, prepare documents and handle the closing.
A real estate attorney will generally charge by the hour for their services, but some may offer flat or package rates. It’s best to ask for references from family and friends who have used real estate lawyers in the past. You can also use online review websites to find lawyers in your area and read their reviews.
Real estate law encompasses all legal issues regarding the sale, purchase, leasing and ownership of land and structures on it. It includes everything from zoning regulations to deeds and titles. Local laws can differ between counties and cities, so you’ll need a lawyer who has experience in your specific region.
Buying or Selling Land
Real estate attorneys will be able to advise land-buying and selling clients on all aspects of the purchase or sale. This includes ensuring the deed transfer is completed properly and that the buyer is ready to take possession of the property. It also means reviewing zoning and covenants, conditions and restrictions (CC&R) to determine how the property may be used and any legal ramifications of violating those rules.
When purchasing a home, people usually want unique features that make it stand out from the competition. However, buying land is a different story — the property needs to check almost every box to attract buyers.
A lawyer can help with this, making sure the seller has a clear title and that any mortgages are paid off in full before closing. This can prevent delays in the closing process and even a possible lawsuit down the road. An attorney can also help with the escrow process and prepare purchase agreements for both parties.