Home Buyers & Sellers

Preparing and Signing the Contract

Sometimes the attorney handles the contract phase of the transaction and sometimes realtors handle it. This depends on various factors, including the custom in locality where the property is located, the nature of the particular transaction, and the preferences of the parties to the transaction. We are available at any point to assist you, and because of our experience as outlined below, we benefit you at all points in the transaction. We are willing to provide a no-cost consultation and review which may help you decide how you want your particular transaction handled.

Disclosure, Due Diligence, and Survey

We can advise you how to handle disclosure issues if you are a seller, and how best to satisfy your due diligence requirements if you are a buyer. The earlier you speak to us in this regard the better. If these issues are not properly addressed at the point of contract, you may lose rights and protection. Survey and property line issues also need to be considered and discussed, although many times a survey is not needed. If you do not address survey issues at the point of contract, again, it may be too late to properly protect your interests. We are prepared to discuss these issues with you early on—in general terms, or specifically as to your particular property.

Contract Contingencies

Most residential contracts generally contain two contingencies: a mortgage contingency and a home inspection contingency. This means that the buyer and seller have entered into a binding contract, but only if the buyer can get a mortgage and only if the buyer is satisfied with the home inspection. Under the circumstances specified in the contract, these contingencies typically provide the buyer with the right to declare the contract null and void and to receive back its deposit funds. These contingencies are clearly consequential and are becoming more so in today’s market.

The buyer and seller can avoid disappointment, or unrealized expectations, if they are aware early on of the red flags and pitfalls. The buyer and seller must understand that the contingencies are written differently in the standard form contracts, depending on the contract used. Typically this is influenced by the custom where the property is located. Whether you are a buyer or a seller, provided that we are involved in time, we can advise you on these issues and, if appropriate, prepare contract language to protect your interests and meet your expectations.