Real Estate Law

Many buyers and sellers of residential real estate are reluctant to hire an attorney, choosing instead to rely on form contracts and inexperienced title companies, due primarily to the misconception that a real estate attorney costs too much money or will complicate the process. Believing these misconceptions can cost you precious time and money.

It is important to remember that the purchase or sale of your home is one of the most important financial transactions in your life. No two real estate closings are the same, and there are no “standard” contracts.

Negotiating and preparing real estate contracts requires a deep understanding of contract and real estate law to ensure that the final contract will be upheld and your interests will be protected. Along with assisting you in the process of selecting one of Florida’s “standard real estate contracts”, David J. Heekin, PA will customize the form to meet any particular needs as well as provide counsel to ensure the your best interests are met.

Only an attorney can effectively advise a party on matters relating to the title and answer legal questions that often arise during the closing process. In addition, retaining the services of a real estate attorney to represent you and handle your closing often costs no more than (and sometimes less than) a title company closing.
By selling your home without the help of a real estate agent you may be able to save the 6 % commission typically paid to agents on a home sale. On a $250,000 home, that represents a potential savings of over $12,000. Or you can use those savings to offer your home for sale at a lower price, which may help you attract a larger pool of interested buyers and sell your home quicker.

When selling a home by owner, you don’t have to leave the house because a real estate agent wants to show it, or clean it every morning before leaving “just in case”. And when a home buyer makes an offer, there’s not all that frustrating back-and-forth telephone tag between real estate agents to reach an agreement.

A reverse mortgage is a special type of home loan that lets you convert a portion of the equity in your home into cash. The equity that built up over years of home mortgage payments can be paid to you. But unlike a traditional home equity loan or second mortgage, no repayment is required until the borrower(s) no longer use the home as their principal residence or fail to meet the obligations of the mortgage.

With a traditional second mortgage, or a home equity line of credit, you must have sufficient income versus debt ratio to qualify for the loan, and you are required to make monthly mortgage payments. The reverse mortgage is different in that it pays you, and is available regardless of your current income. The amount you can borrow depends on your age, the current interest rate, and the appraised value of your home, sales price or lender’s mortgage limits.

To be eligible for a HUD reverse mortgage, HUD’s Federal Housing Administration (FHA) requires that the borrower be 62 years of age or older; have a very low outstanding mortgage balance or own his or her home clear and free; and that he or she meets with a HUD-approved counseling agency to make sure he or she understands what a HUD reverse mortgage will mean.

We invite you to call our office and speak with one of our attorneys about your next residential closing transaction. Please allow us to explain how we can help make your real estate closing a pleasant, worry-free experience.

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