Should I Have an Attorney Look at My Real Estate Contract Before I Sign it?

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Nearly all real estate transactions involve the signing of a real estate contract. While there are some common mistakes made in association with real estate contracts, one of the most common errors people make is to not obtain the assistance of a knowledgeable attorney before signing the contract.

Obtaining the assistance of an attorney first is important because these contracts are one of the most important documents in any part of a real estate transactions. Frequently, these contracts will establish the rights and obligations of both the buyer and seller. These contracts also frequently perform other essential tasks including identification of the buyer, seller, purchase prices, what is and isn’t included in the purchase, obligations of the parties before closing, the closing date, and type of deed involved. As a result, it is highly recommended that each party involved in a real estate transaction have an attorney review their contract to determine if the party’s legal rights are being contracted properly and if the contract is in their best interest. After the contract is finalized, the buyer and seller are bound by its terms.

Common Issues That Arise with Real Estate Contracts 

Some people make the mistake of thinking that their real estate contract is so simple that the assistance of seasoned legal counsel is not necessary. Even in the most basic real estate contracts, however, there are some common issues that arise which include the following:

  • Whether the seller wants to stay in the possession of the property or other conditions that are to be performed after the closing. This is just one of many complications that can make a purchase complicated. A seasoned attorney is able to make sure that each desired condition in a property transfer is satisfied.
  • Whether any hidden recorded exceptions exist in connection to a property that will limit how it can be used. Legal counsel is able to review the associated documents to determine if any conditions could affect property ownership.
  • Whether you or your personal assets are adequately protected. One common way to reduce the liability for companies that are purchasing rental property is to create a separate legal entity like a corporation, to purchase the property. Knowledgeable legal counsel understands how to minimize liability for companies that purchase a new property.
  • Whether possible encroachments exist on a property. These elements have the potential to significantly influence a person’s ability to resell property. An experienced lawyer can determine prior to purchasing property if any of these encroachments exist.
  • Whether the property has been in foreclosure. The risk associated with foreclosed property is that the purchaser might not acquire good title to the property. A seasoned attorney is able to determine if the property purchaser is acquiring good title.

Obtain the Services of a Seasoned Property Law Attorney 

In all cases, a buyer and seller of real estate are best served by obtaining the assistance of an attorney who will represent each of their interests in reviewing and signing the contract. At O’Keeffe O’Brien Lyson Foss, we have significant experience navigating a vast array of real estate transactions. Speak to attorney Dean Rindy today for help reviewing your real estate transaction by calling 701-235-8000 or 877-235-8002.

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