Real estate transactions and litigation can be a complex area, involving centuries-old law, brokers, agents, lawyers, buyers, sellers and title agents. When buying or selling a home, business or vacant land, it is imperative to retain competent legal counsel to help guide you through the transaction and to preserve your rights and best interests. I have helped buyers and sellers of residential and commercial property navigate the turbulent waters of a real estate transaction. I have also litigated civil disputes between parties over boundary lines, easements (right-of-ways), lake rights and carried out a lawsuit against a homeowner’s association that was improperly enforcing deed restrictions against one of its members. I also help land-lords and tenants by both bringing and defending against eviction petitions.
A competent real estate attorney should be prepared to review his or her client’s contract and explain all provisions in easy to understand terms, negotiate with the other side for acceptable changes to the agreement, review leases if the purchase involves a property that is currently rented, be able to advise the client on landlord/ tenant matters and if necessary be able to carry out evictions in court. The attorney should also be familiar with title insurance and all aspects of dealing with defects in title.
A competent attorney should review inspections and reports and make recommendations based on his or her experience to avoid pitfalls down the road and to help save his or her client’s hard earned money or to maximize the return on a client’s investment. Real estate is a tough and competitive business and contacting an experienced attorney can make all the difference.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN HIRING A REAL ESTATE ATTORNEY
When it comes time to buying or selling a home, you’ll be dealing with many professionals. But real estate agents and loan officers are just some of the professionals involved in the typical real estate transaction. Attorneys are also an important part of the equation. Real estate can be a tricky business. The purchase and sale process moves quickly, encountering many issues on the way that require prompt attention. This is where an experienced attorney comes in. A good real estate attorney anticipates what is coming and takes proper precautions to avoid problems. For these reasons, it is important to retain an attorney experienced in real estate. Once you have contacted and retained one, you should expect your attorney to protect your interests. An experienced attorney will do this by doing the following:
- Carefully examine your contract and discuss it with you in detail to make sure that the underlying agreement meets your expectations. If anything is missing from the written agreement, or if there is ambiguous wording, your attorney can make appropriate revisions. Your attorney should also keep track of important contractual dates (ex: inspections and mortgage approval) to make sure that they are not missed.
- Carefully examine all inspection reports (structural, pest, radon, well water flow/quality, septic, etc.), discuss any issues with you, solicit work/ repair estimates (typically with the realtor’s assistance) and negotiate a mutually agreeable compromise with the other party’s attorney where necessary.
- Assist in obtaining title insurance as required by the lender and in clearing up any existing title issues or defects.
- Monitor your mortgage approval date and work closely with your loan originator to assist with further contractual revisions that may be necessary if the mortgage loan product or seller contribution amounts change. Once commitment is in hand, the expiration dates of mortgage approval and interest rate lock-in must be carefully observed. To avoid additional costs, its important to push the transaction to a closing table before either one of these dates lapse or expire.
- At times purchasers will want to move possessions into the property before the final closing. An attorney can prepare an agreement to accommodate the arrangement, On the flip side, a seller may want to remain in the property for a fixed number of days after a final closing. Again, assuming that this is acceptable by the purchaser, it is imperative that a well-crafted agreement be put in place at the time of closing to protect the client under these circumstances.
In sum, it is impossible to understate the importance of selecting the right real estate attorney to represent your interests in the purchase or sale of your home. Not every real estate transaction goes exactly as planned and it is when the “unexpected” occurs that having experienced legal guidance yields huge dividends. Please contact me today to discuss your real estate matter.
Real estate ownership can be one of the most frustrating areas of law for clients. I can help you navigate the maze of your real estate matter with confidence and professionalism. I am experienced with real estate closings, residential and commercial leases, evictions and title issues. For clients who are interested in investment properties and commercial real estate management, I can also provide advice as to the proper business entity (i.e. S-Corp., LLC, Family Limited Partnership, etc…) to help shield your personal assets from liability.
Attorney in Clifton Park Center, New York. Conveniently located off Exit 9 of the Northway. Friendly and approachable.
REAL ESTATE AND BUYING OR SELLING A HOME OR BUSINESS