Found your Dream Home? Proceed With Caution
For most people, there is no transaction more daunting than the purchase of a house. In most cases, the purchase goes smoothly and the couple settles into their new dream home. However, in some cases, due to the complicated nature of the papers, lack of experience in real estate transactions, and the desire to “just get it done”, the dream turns into a nightmare.
Here are some tips to help make your real estate transaction go smoothly:
If you don’t understand it, don’t sign it: Real estate contracts can be extremely complicated and the language can be confusing. You should never sign anything you don’t 100% understand. It just could be that the one provision you didn’t understand and decided to let go, is the provision that entangles you in litigation for years to come.
Beware of the real estate agent representing both sides of the transaction: It’s difficult for an agent (or anyone) to represent both sides fairly when a conflict arises. Ask your agent a lot of questions and make sure the agent takes the time to fully answer all of your concerns. Remember this is usually the most expensive transaction of your life. You have the right to get additional opinions. If you sense that the agent is favoring the person on the other side of the deal or you feel uncomfortable, it’s a sign that you should consult with someone else who can adequately represent your interests.
Trust your instincts: If something is nagging at you, take a step back and re-evaluate the situation. Is the seller is making unreasonable demands, refusing to budge on the price, or has the inspection has uncovered a defect? If so, consider your options and listen to your gut if it is telling you to walk away.
If you decide to go it alone in your home purchase, these tips will help you succeed. Because there is so much at stake in a real estate transaction, hiring an experienced real estate attorney makes sense in many cases to protect your interests. Your lawyer will help you negotiate the best deal, explain the contract, and make sure the sales contract adheres to the law—in other words, make your dream (home) come true.