Real estate transactions vary by state across the US. There is no one-fits-all guide to prepare buyers and sellers for real estate closing. This article looks to give you an insight into some of the legal requirements of a typical home buying process in North Carolina.
1. The need for legal counsel
A Contract or Offer to Purchase is a document that details the terms of the property transaction at hand. To sell or purchase a home in North Carolina, you must provide a written agreement which must be foreseen by a lawyer. Your task is to ensure the attorney that represents you is both qualified and experienced in handling such transactions.
Remember, it is just not about meeting the state’s legal requirements. It is also about having your rights protected during the transaction and getting value for your money with the purchase. A good lawyer real estate lawyer in Monroe NC will have your interests at heart and you will see it from the word go.
2. Property disclosure
Property disclosure is one of the most important obligations real estate sellers in North Carolina are supposed to fulfill. The disclosure statement has 37 questions that detail the conditions of the property that may affect its value. They include the structural components and state of the dwelling and mechanical systems; past or current pest infestations; zoning laws; restrictive covenants; encroachments; the presence of asbestos, methane gas, radon gas, lead-based paint, and other hazardous materials; and the possibility of the property’s management being under a homeowners association.
The seller is obligated to produce this statement with or without the buyer’s request, but it is advisable that the buyer requests for it as early in the deal as possible.
3. Title Issues
Before buying property, buyers are expected to conduct a title search with a title company. The company scans public records for any easements, liens, and other title restrictions that may impact the property later on. If a problem is located during the title search, you would be quite within your rights to ask the seller to fix the issue as a prerequisite to closing. Also, ensure to obtain a title insurance to cover any expenses that may arise from legal issues related to the previous ownership. If a third party makes such a claim, your insurer will take care of the expenses.
4. Pre-Closing Inspection
Pre-closing inspection is usually conducted by the buyer to ensure the property is in the same condition as when he or she first inspected it. It is not necessarily a legal requirement, but any real estate lawyer would encourage you to do it.
In North Carolina, the moment you close the property, it becomes entirely yours and the owner has no additional obligations to you. In case something changes and the house doesn’t look the same after you close it, the law will assume you conducted the pre-closing inspection and knew about the changes. The final walk-through is thus a step entirely designed to protect your interests.