The legal responsibilities involved with buying and selling property require expert guidance and assistance to ensure that you do not make mistakes. Learn about the services provided by a real estate attorney to see how you would benefit from hiring this kind of professional.
Contract and Document Assistance
Whether you are buying or selling a residence or property, contracts and documents will be a large part of the process. These contracts can be confusing and complicated, full of legalese and unfamiliar concepts. A real estate attorney will help you understand all documents and contracts associated with a transaction. If negotiations are necessary, the lawyer will handle this process on your behalf. The attorney will also prepare and then submit or register these legal documents in accordance with local requirements.
A number of issues can be present with real estate, known as equitable servitudes. A covenant involves a specific promise that has been made for someone to be able to do something on land. For example, an owner may promise to maintain a drainage ditch to manage the flow of water and keep it from moving onto adjoining land. An easement involves a right to do something on someone else’s land. For example, a person with an adjoining property but no access might have an easement to cross property to access land. A lawyer will help you explore equitable servitudes so you understand any issues present with the parcel you might purchase.
Title Search and Insurance
A lawyer will perform a title search to ensure that land does not have encumbrances. Encumbrances are liens or judgments. A lien results from a debt connected to property. Before an owner can sell land with a lien, the owner must pay off the debt. A lien could be connected with unpaid property taxes, income taxes, child support, or contractor work. With a judgment lien, a creditor places a lien on land after suing the owner and winning a court judgment. If a title search reveals encumbrances, the lawyer will advise the parties about whether a seller has the legal right to sell the property. A real estate attorney can perform title searches quickly due to the professional relationship that exists between the lawyer and a title search company. If an encumbrance is discovered, the lawyer can negotiate terms to help resolve it as a part of the transaction.
Representation at Closing
After all negotiations and discovery, the closing will occur. The closing involves a physical meeting for execution of documents and ownership transfer of the property. With a real estate attorney representing you at this meeting, you will have professional assistance with the entire process. The lawyer will review all papers before you sign them. The professional will also help resolve any last-minute issues that could arise.
A real estate attorney working to protect your interests in the sale of a house can have many important benefits for both the seller and the buyer. Although this representation involves fees, many people decide the expense is worth the service.