Why Do I Need a Lawyer When Buying a Home?

Buying a home is an exciting time, but it can also be a daunting experience as it is usually the biggest financial decision of your life.  So, it is important to know your rights and obligations, financial and otherwise, when signing a real estate contract.  There are many people on your team during a real estate transaction with crucial responsibilities (e.g., real estate brokers, lenders, inspectors, etc.), but there are certain components to the transaction that only a real estate lawyer can handle for you.  For example, although most real estate transactions in Illinois use some version of a form contract, not all versions include provisions that are relevant, appropriate, or even protective of your interests for that particular piece of property.  And, sometimes, the form contracts are missing key provisions that could save you a lot of time, money, and headaches.  A real estate lawyer will help you understand your rights and obligations under your specific contract and will attempt to negotiate more favorable terms for you in the event the contract is not in your best interest.

A real estate lawyer will also help you review your inspection report and request any necessary repairs or repair credits.  He or she will review the seller’s title insurance commitment to ensure you are getting clear title to the property with no outstanding mortgages, liens, or judgments.  If you are buying a condominium or a home in a homeowners association, a lawyer will help you review the mounds of documents including declarations, bylaws, financials, meeting minutes, rules and regulations, and the like to help you decide whether this association is where you want to live.  A lawyer will also review all of the seller-produced closing documents including the deed, bill of sale, affidavit of title, survey, and final closing figures since it may be incredibly difficult and time-consuming to try to negotiate or change anything after the closing has been completed.  And finally, a real estate lawyer will explain to you the stack of loan documents that you sign at the closing table outlining all of your rights and obligations in borrowing such a large sum of money.

Sometimes the unique and nuanced circumstances of your transaction may require a real estate lawyer’s oversight to ensure you are purchasing a home without major future complications.  If you are buying a new construction, in addition to providing all of the above services, a real estate lawyer can be crucial in your understanding of your rights after the closing during the limited warranty period.  Further, if the new home is on land that has been recently subdivided, a new association has been created, or is a unit in a newly constructed condominium building, it is important that a lawyer review all of the association, tax, and title documents to ensure the developer has completed everything correctly since this will be your and your association’s problem after the developer hands over the association.

Real estate lawyers are experienced in understanding how to resolve problems and can often help you avoid pitfalls before they start.  If you are thinking about purchasing a home, consider contacting the real estate lawyers at Pucher & Ranucci, P.C. to explain not only the closing process, but also to explain the financial obligations associated with the home you are looking to purchase.

Areas of Laws We Practice
Family Law
  • Divorce
  • Division of Property
  • Maintenance
  • Child Support
  • Parental Responsibility and Parenting Time
  • Paternity
  • Post-Decree Matters
  • Pre-nuptial/Post-nuptial Agreements
  • Adoption
Estate Planning
  • Joint and Individual Trusts
  • Special Needs Trusts
  • Pet Trusts
  • Wills
  • Power of Attorney for Healthcare
  • Power of Attorney for Property
  • Living Wills
  • Trust Funding Documents
  • Deeds in Trust
Real Estate
  • Residential Real Estate Transactions (Sales, Purchases, and Short Sales)
  • Commercial Real Estate Transactions
  • Drafting and Reviewing Residential and Commercial Lease Agreements
  • Drafting and Recording Deeds
  • Resolution of Title Issues
  • Organizing Corporate Entities

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