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Our Firm handles traditional purchases of real estate, including both residential and commercial properties. We also handle refinancing of loans and mortgages, home equity lines of credit, and mobile home sales and de-titles. Additionally, we handle quitclaim deeds and property transfer. We handle commercial lease agreements, commercial purchases, and commercial sales and refinances. We also do real estate development, and that could be anything from sub-divisions to multifamily homes or to a corporate real estate development. The only thing we don’t handle in real estate law is real estate or residential litigation. We don’t handle litigation between homeowners, neighbors, landlords and tenants, etc.
DO I NEED AN ATTORNEY WHEN PURCHASING A SINGLE FAMILY HOME?
The real estate attorney handles the title insurance of the closing. In South Carolina, title insurance is a legal requirement, and you do need a lawyer to handle the closing, escrow servicing, and titling of your property.
WHY SHOULD I HIRE AN ATTORNEY IF I’M JUST PURCHASING OR SELLING A PROPERTY?
In South Carolina, it’s required that an attorney handle and supervise many of the critical elements of a real estate closing. These elements include title searches and abstracts, title review and certification, and the closing itself, including preparation and analysis of closing documents and escrowing the funds. All money passes through the attorney’s escrow account and is distributed according to the documentation that is presented.
SHOULD I USE THE STANDARD LISTING AGREEMENT BY REALTORS TO BUY OR SELL PROPERTY OR SHOULD I USE A CUSTOM AGREEMENT MADE BY MY ATTORNEY?
For residential properties, most states including South Carolina have a standard realtor’s contract that everyone real estate agents and attorneys are familiar with. We use the standard form as it is convenient for all parties involved, but also review and draft real estate agreements specific to the individual transaction.
WHAT IS INVOLVED IN THE CLOSING OF A REAL ESTATE PROPERTY?
Often, when people are buying a property for the first time, they don’t understand the amount of paperwork and tasks associated with a closing. The first thing that needs to be done is a contract between the buyer and seller. There is an earnest money deposit that usually goes along with the signing of that contract. Included in the contract is a list of deadlines and dates for certain things to be done. It is very important to make sure that all those dates are noted when the contract is signed.
Next, there is the due diligence and the inspection period. This is vital, because in most contracts for real estate, specifically in residential real estate, there are out clauses, or the things that the buyer, if things are found, can get out of the contract, or the contract will be cancelled. There will be inspections, both home inspections and termite inspections, with a financing statement stating that if the buyer can’t obtain funding to buy the house, either they negotiate the contract again or the contract is voided. At that time, a title search is done to make sure that the title is good and marketable.
In addition, a survey of the property is done, and then the attorneys review both the survey and title to certify that the title is good and marketable. Also, the attorney needs to receive payoff requests for all liens.
Then, the lender will give a title commitment letter and will coordinate the closing. From here, we must review all the lender documents and the settlement statements and prepare for the closing.
During closing, the attorney will explain every document that is involved and all parties will sign the closing documents. The attorney will do the transferring of the deed and transfer funds through the escrow account to the lenders, sellers, agents, mortgage companies, and taxing authorities and insurance companies. The attorney will give the title insurance commitment to the buyers and the bank, and then record the mortgage deed through the clerk at the courthouse.
For more information on Real Estate Cases In South Carolina, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (864) 982-5930 today.
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The Real Estate Closing Process