Trying to buy a house is as exhilarating as it can be frustrating. Only a fraction of the houses in your price range will likely meet your property requirements, so it could take weeks to find a place you’d happily call home.
Simply finding a property that you like doesn’t necessarily mean you can buy it either, as there could be multiple offers on the property. There are a lot of risks and potential pitfalls involved in any real estate transaction, but there are certain things that you can do to protect yourself.
Working with a real estate attorney rather than simply hiring an agent can be a way to better protect yourself during what is ultimately a vulnerable time.
A lawyer can help you with the title search
It can be difficult to make sense of the title history for a property you hope to buy, especially if there have been complicated situations in the past, like the property transferring as part of an estate or due to foreclosure.
Title blemishes and issues with the chain of ownership might ultimately lead to claims against the property that affect your occupancy or investment in the property. A more thorough title exam and careful curative steps can protect the investment you make in the property.
A lawyer can draft customized offer documents
Many real estate documents do more to protect sellers than buyers. You incur some risk by putting down earnest money against a property when you make them an offer on it.
If something comes up in the future, like the appraisal coming in far under the price you offered, you want to be able to cancel the transaction without making yourself vulnerable. Having an attorney create custom paperwork that integrates specific contingencies to protect you can minimize the risk you take while making an offer.
An attorney can help you properly protect your investment
It can be hard to know what decisions to make about insurance on your property or even how to fulfill your obligations as a homeowner in a specific community. A lawyer can help you make sense of your obligations as a new property owner and can help you better protect your property with insurance.
Someone already familiar with your financial and personal circumstances can give you a better idea about what kind of coverage is necessary for you and what other risks you may have to address when you assume occupancy of the home.
Getting the right help when buying real estate can make your transition from being a renter to a homeowner a little bit smoother.