Real Estate Contracts Overview

Smooth transactions do not gain notoriety. That’s a good thing.

A real estate contract is a legal document that covers rights, responsibilities and obligations of the parties involved. Depending on which side of the contract you will find yourself (landlord’s tenant’s, buyer’s or seller’s), signing a contract will create a legally binding agreement between you and other parties involved.

The transactions that go smoothly don’t cause much notoriety; all the parties are happy in the end. The problem are the transactions that go wrong. The main question becomes, will yours be the side exposed to liability the most?

Here are a few points to consider before signing a real estate contract:

  • The origin of the contract.

Which party created the contract? The other party’s document will almost always put their party in a more favorable situation. Are the provisions of the contract current? Have there been changes in the legal code, or even in the way things work in the world that could have a negative impact?

  • Was the contract prepared by a real estate agent instead of an attorney?

Most legal problems are caused by poorly drafted agreements by well-meaning, but not qualified to do so real estate agents. A comma in the wrong place could change the meaning of the entire provision. When it comes to rights, liabilities and obligations, it is wise to have your contracts drafted by an attorney, who is not only skilled, but is legally able to do so.

  • Experience in real estate matters.

Have you been exposed to the issues that can rise in a landlord/tenant or buyer/seller transactions? Are these issues thoroughly addressed in the contract? Is your side represented well? Real estate is a specialized area of law. It would help if the contract was drafted by an attorney, whose expertise is based on an actual brokerage and real estate transactional experience.

  • Timing and pressure.

The more urgent the deal appears, the sloppier and less thorough your attention to detail becomes. Especially, when the pressure is made greater by large numbers at steak.

  • How objective are you about this specific transaction?

Are there important areas that are implied, rather than included in the contract? Have you considered what would make the transaction a deal breaker? Are those issues addressed in the contract?

Here is how an experienced real estate attorney will help your side of the deal:
  • Put the time on your side. When managed properly, no real deal will escape due to timing issue. Deals don’t die due to small amounts of time. The deals that do were not realistic to begin with.
  • Ensure that your side and your interests are the one that are being represented. That’s the difference between having a hope versus sleeping well at night.
  • Understand your obligations, without exposing yourself to unnecessary liabilities.
  • Avoid future lawsuits over misunderstandings, errors or omissions.
  • Have a second and objective pair of eyes to look over your deal.

Mr. Moschetti has been representing high net-worth individuals, businesses and landlords for over 15 years. His expertise with contracts and term negotiations has proven to save clients time, money and lessen the burden of overwhelm and worry. Mr. Moschetti offers real estate transaction services that deal with purchase and sale contracts, lease drafting, renewal and negotiations, as well as due diligence and analysis. With Mr. Moschetti your property will be in good hands.