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Fairfield CT real estate attorneyThe requirements for purchasing a home vary from state to state. In Connecticut, a lawyer is required for any real estate transaction that involves title insurance. A title insurance agent must be a practicing attorney unless the agent received his or her title insurance license before June 12, 1984. Furthermore, as of October 2019, only lawyers licensed to practice in the state of Connecticut are permitted to perform certain real estate closings. Aside from these requirements, there are also many benefits associated with using a real estate lawyer when buying your home.

Peace of Mind During the Home-Buying Process

Buying a home is one of the most consequential decisions you will ever make. It is also likely to be one of the most significant financial purchases of your life. The process of buying a home can be complicated, stressful, and confusing. Mistakes can lead to massive legal and financial consequences. Working with an experienced real estate attorney gives you the peace of mind you need during this exciting, yet stressful, time in your life.

Due Diligence and Preparing Legal Documents

A real estate lawyer can ensure that you fully understand the terms and conditions contained in the numerous contracts you are signing. This prevents you from agreeing to anything that you do not intend to agree to. A lawyer can also perform a title search to look for any property liens or other hindrances. Sometimes a home has a lien on it unbeknownst to the seller. Many lenders will refuse to loan money for a home with a lien on it. Unknowingly acquiring a home with a lien on it can land you in major debt. Your real estate attorney will also review the sales agreement and closing documents and ensure that the terms are what you have agreed to. If a legal dispute regarding the purchase of your new home arises, your attorney will advocate on your behalf and help you resolve the issue.

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CT real estate lawyerBuying a home is too important for you to finalize the purchase without inspecting the home first. Finding major problems with your new home after you have moved in may force you to pay for expensive repairs or leave you stuck in a flawed home. Most real estate contracts include a home inspection contingency clause, which gives the prospective buyer the right to hire a professional home inspector and to cancel the contract if the inspection report concerns them. The buyer should at least be aware of the problems so they can be factored into the selling price. Here are six parts of a home inspection where problems can arise:

  • Foundation and Basement: A weak foundation can threaten the stability of the home. Signs of foundation problems may include cracks in the foundation or moisture in the basement, The foundation problem could be something that can be repaired or may be caused by the land the house was built on.
  • Roof and Attic: Missing tiles or dark spots could be a sign of a weak spot or leak in the roof. Even if the roof is not currently leaking, it may not be long before the weak spots become leaks unless they are repaired. The extent of the existing damage may determine whether the roof needs to be reshingled or replaced.
  • Electricity: An outdated electrical system can be dangerous and expensive to repair because it will require tearing into walls. Signs of a weak electrical system may include light switches that do not work and insufficient power for operating appliances.
  • Plumbing: An old or weak plumbing system can also be an expensive fix and cause extensive water damage if not addressed. Signs may include leaks and poor water pressure.
  • Drainage: Gutters and downspouts should be attached and directing water away from the home. A poor drainage system can cause water damage to multiple areas of the house.
  • HVAC: Proper heating and cooling are more than issues of comfort. An inefficient HVAC system can raise the cost of your energy bill.

Contact a Fairfield County Residential Real Estate Attorney

Finding major damage or needed repairs during a home inspection should affect your final decision on purchasing the home and what price you are willing to pay for it. A Stamford residential real estate lawyer at the Law Offices of Daniel P. Weiner can advise you during your real estate transaction and make sure your contract protects you. Schedule a free consultation by calling 203-348-5846.

 

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CT real estate lawyerIf you are thinking about selling your home, you may be exploring your various options. While many people choose to utilize the expertise of a real estate agent, it is possible to sell your home on your own. “For sale by owner” or FSBO sales come with advantages as well as disadvantages. Selling your home without a real estate agent’s assistance is a significant undertaking that will require a great deal of your time and energy. Consequently, it is important to be fully educated about the FSBO process before embarking on this endeavor.

Will I Save Money By Selling My House on My Own?

By now you probably already know that real estate agents make their living by taking a commission from home sale proceeds. Many individuals look into FSBO sales because they do not want an agent’s commission to be deducted from their sale profit. While selling your home on your own does eliminate this particular cost, there is no guarantee that an FSBO sale will save you money on the whole. In fact, it is possible that the profit you will make from the sale will be even less than it would have been if you did work with a real estate agent. Selling your property for too little is one of the most common pitfalls that FSBO sellers fall victim to.

Consider the Amount of Control and Responsibility You Want to Take On

Some people want to be as involved in the home selling process as much as possible. Others are too busy with their family or career to take on a great deal of home-selling responsibilities. If you sell the home on your own, you will maintain complete control over the sale. You will choose the listing price and details as well as the marketing strategy. You may also need to negotiate with experienced real estate agents and prepare your home for showings. You will need to evaluate your own desires and abilities to know if an FSBO sale is right for you.

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CT real estate lawyerConnecticut families, like the rest of the country, have been deeply affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Many individuals have had their work hours significantly reduced while others were laid off permanently. Parents have had to find alternative childcare or were forced to stay home from work to watch their children. The financial implications of this virus continue to be wide-reaching. Fortunately, the federal government has taken steps to alleviate at least some of the financial stress caused by the lockdowns. The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) recently announced extended suspensions on real estate owned (REO) evictions and single-family foreclosures.

Financial Relief for Homeowners

The COVID-19 pandemic has reduced the financial resources of millions of families throughout the United States and across the globe. Many Americans have spent sleepless nights worrying about being unable to pay their bills and losing their homes due to foreclosure. Some even feared homelessness. In response to the significant financial harm caused by the pandemic and associated lockdowns, both state and federal government agencies have instituted changes designed to provide financial relief.

Extended Suspension of Foreclosures and Evictions

Earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) declared a cessation on single-family home foreclosures. The Federal Housing Financial Agency (FHFA) followed suit shortly afterward and ordered Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to temporarily freeze foreclosures. These moratoriums were originally set to expire at the end of August. Fortunately, the FHFA has extended the foreclosure and eviction moratoriums until December 31, 2020. The foreclosure suspension only applies to single-family mortgages that are backed by the Federal National Mortgage Association and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Company. The real estate owned eviction moratorium applies to Enterprise-acquired properties that were obtained through foreclosure or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure transactions. This extension is expected to protect more than 28 million homeowners from foreclosure and eviction.

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CT real estate lawyerAre you on the hunt for a house to call home? For first time home buyers, the purchasing process can seem overwhelming and you may be so excited to finally own a home that you jump the gun. When you make an offer on a house, you will complete lots of paperwork that includes the terms of your offer. It is always advisable to work with a real estate attorney while drafting these documents to properly outline your offer and avoid paying more than necessary. Connecticut does not require homebuyers to hire a real estate attorney, but their expertise can keep you from falling victim to unnoticed contingencies included in the seller’s proposal.

Financial Details

It is unlikely that you will forget to include your payment offer on the home while drafting your offer contract; however, this is hardly the only financial consideration that must be done in the purchasing process. Be sure to do your research on the interest rate environment since you will likely have to take out a mortgage to finance your home. It is imperative that you list an interest rate that is affordable in the long term. Any loans that you may need to take out for the purchase of the home should also be listed.

Closing Costs

Just because you are purchasing the home does not necessarily mean that you should be solely responsible for all of the closing costs. If you want the seller to pay a portion of these costs, known as a seller assist, this must be included in your offer agreement. Closing costs are not normally included in the property price, meaning the total cost of the sale will be higher than the price tag cost. It is fairly common for sellers to assist with the closing costs, and even more so if the homebuyer offers a higher purchase price contingent upon the seller’s assistance with the closing costs.

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