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Owning the home of your dreams can provide you with many benefits including a long-term investment and tax advantages. However, a home is also a major financial commitment. There are ways to avoid costly mistakes that can strain your budget.

Using a Lawyer

The attorneys at The Summers Law Firm can help you through the home buying process by reviewing the purchase contract, advising you about title insurance, answering your legal and tax questions, and preparing the documents necessary to complete the purchase.

Residential Real Estate

Agreements to buy and sell real estate in New York State require a written contract to be binding. You should consult the attorneys at The Summers Law Firm before you sign a contract to buy a home.

Protect Your Investment

Your home can be one of your most important investments. You owe it to yourself to protect your investment by proceeding cautiously before signing a purchase contract and closing the sale. If you are considering buying a home, ask the attorneys at The Summers Law Firm to review your purchase contract and provide you the experienced legal counsel necessary to assure that your closing is handled in a competent and timely fashion.

Please be sure you have considered the following before entering into any agreement:

  • Always read every line of a contract carefully before signing.

  • The time to consult an attorney is BEFORE you sign any contract or agreement. Contracts signed by you may be binding and your rights and obligations may be fixed, and your attorney's ability to structure the terms may be limited if you sign before consulting an attorney.

  • Most "standard real estate" contracts will have an "attorney's approval clause" in it, but usually this contingency lasts only for a short time. If you have signed a contract without first having it reviewed by an attorney, be sure you have it reviewed before this contingency expires.

  • Other important contingencies that will permit the buyer to cancel the contract include a "mortgage contingency". This usually provides that if the buyer is unable to secure a given amount of financing, with a given percentage rate, by a certain date, he or she can cancel the contract with proper written notice. Failure to exercise your rights under such a contingency can result in waiving your right to cancel the contract if you are unable to secure sufficient financing to purchase the property.

  • It is the buyer's responsibility to carefully inspect a home that is NOT a newly constructed home. Hiring a professional inspector to review the structure and its mechanical systems is always a good idea. "Structural contingencies" can also be written into contracts, so the prospective buyer can back out of the contracts if defects over a certain amount of money (usually one or two thousand dollars) is uncovered within a given amount of time from signing the contract.

Similarly, pest inspections and contingencies (i.e., termites and other wood destroying organisms) are often included in the contract. But, again it is important not to allow the time for the contingency to expire before the issues are addressed and the necessary action taken. New home buyers are protected by statutory housing merchant implied warranty under General Business law section 777a.

 Read our article - Learn All You Should Know About Buying a Home

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