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West Palm Beach Estate Planning & Probate Attorney > West Palm Beach Real Estate Attorney

West Palm Beach Real Estate Attorney

West Palm Beach Real Estate Contracts & Closings Attorneys

Given the volatility of today’s commercial and residential market, it has never been more important than it is today to hire an experienced West Palm Beach real estate attorney to represent you when it’s time to sign a real estate contract or during a real estate closing. To protect your interests, it is important to hire an experience West Palm Beach real estate attorney to review each of the terms of the property transaction and closing documents, ensuring that you understand all the issues that may subject you to future liability.

At the West Palm Beach real estate Law Offices of Larry E. Bray in Lake Worth, Boca Raton and West Palm Beach, Florida, we make sure you understand the legal impact of the documents you sign, by providing you with the legal counsel you need during a real estate closing.

Real estate transactions are governed by various federal statutes, state statutes, and common laws that address a wide variety of legal issues related to acquiring, financing, developing, managing, constructing, leasing, and selling commercial and residential real property. Buying and selling real estate is generally more complicated than buying or selling other expensive goods, such as cars or boats. With real estate, many different people can have an interest in the same property, tax consequences are more complicated, and possession is not necessarily indicative of ownership. The economic climate today has made things very difficult for many people. Foreclosures are rampant and the opportunity to purchase property at low prices is unprecedented.

Contact us or call (561) 296-5291 to schedule an appointment to discuss your legal concerns with an experienced West Palm Beach real estate attorney.

A West Palm Beach Real Estate Attorney Helps People Protect Their Interests in a Real Estate Closing

For over 30 years, we have been representing the interests of West Palm Beach commercial and residential property owners during a real estate closing. With our extensive real estate practice comes the ability to:

  • Make sure there are no liens on the property;
  • Conduct a title or deed search;
  • Determine whether there are any unresolved environmental or inspection issues;
  • Evaluate proposed financial terms;
  • Review and analyze contract terms and conditions;
  • Determine if any changes to a property impact its sale or purchase; and
  • Make sure that every penny of the purchase proceeds is allocated properly.

Providing West Palm Beach Title Insurance

Through the Attorneys’ Title Insurance Fund Services, we write title insurance policies for people and businesses. We also are able to make sure you obtain title insurance to protect your interests in case any liens or encumbrances are found against your property.

Helping you settle West Palm Beach real estate disputes

Many different types of legal conflicts can arise regarding both residential and commercial real estate. Maintaining a positive relationship with neighbors, lenders, or other parties is often important, so our real estate attorneys always aim to settle disputes in the most amicable and efficient way possible while still protecting your interests. Some of the common West Palm Beach real estate disputes that can arise include:

  • Boundary or property line disputes;
  • Easement challenges;
  • Breach of contract;
  • Wrongful liens;
  • Quiet title disputes;
  • Non-disclosure or fraud on the part of a seller;
  • Land use and zoning disputes; and/or
  • Condemnation under eminent domain.

There are many ways to settle real estate disputes out of court, including mediation, arbitration, and negotiation. Using alternative dispute resolution techniques not only saves resources, but can often work to preserve your relations with your neighbors or other types of adverse parties. However, if litigation is necessary, we will provide the highest quality of West Palm Beach real estate representation in court.

Defending real estate owners facing foreclosure

Despite their best efforts to comply with all mortgage loan terms, many real estate owners in West Palm Beach end up falling behind on their payments. If you have received notice of default or foreclosure, your very first call should be to the Law Offices of Larry E. Bray to find out how our West Palm Beach foreclosure defense attorneys can help you.

Too many property owners believe that they have no options in the face of foreclosure but to simply lose their home. However, there are many ways to defend against a foreclosure and we explore every possible option that may help you keep your valuable real estate. According to Florida law, all foreclosures are judicial and must be pursued through the courts. This means that homeowners have a chance to present various defenses just like any other type of court case. Some defenses that may be available to you include:

  • Your lender failed to comply with procedural requirements;
  • The terms of your mortgage loan were unfair;
  • Fraud or misrepresentation on the part of your mortgage broker or loan officer;
  • Your default occurred due to inappropriate fees added to your payments; or
  • The lender cannot present your original mortgage note to the court;
  • The lender cannot prove it has standing to sue;
  • Robo-signing of documents by the lender.

These are only some examples of ways that you can defend your rights against a foreclosing lender, let our experienced West Palm Beach foreclosure defense attorney help.

In addition to raising legal defenses, we can also negotiate on your behalf with the mortgage lender to see if there are any other options for you to make your payments manageable or otherwise avoid foreclosure. Some of these options may include:

  • Modification of your mortgage loan;
  • Short sale; or
  • Deed in lieu of foreclosure.

In some cases, a mortgage lender may be willing to adjust your interest rate, payment schedule, or other factors that may allow you to get back on track with your payments. If loan modification is not an option, we can explore other possibilities with your lender to find other more favorable solutions than a foreclosure action. We will represent you in negotiations or mediation if necessary to achieve the best possible results for you. Contact our West Palm Beach foreclosure defense attorney.

Real Estate Law FAQs

Q: What is real estate?

A: Real estate (also called real property) refers to land and things attached to land. For most consumers, real estate consists of their home and the lot surrounding it. Commercial real estate may include factories, equipment, and other facilities. In addition to buildings and equipment, resources existing on (or under) the land, including minerals and gas, are part of real estate. Some of these components of real estate can be sold separately.

Q: What are deeds for?

A: Deeds indicate, and are generally required to transfer, ownership of real estate. A deed contains the names of the old and new owners and a legal description of the property and is signed by the person transferring the property. The different kinds of deeds, such as the warranty deed, quit claim deed and grant deed, transfer different interests in property. For example, a seller conveying property by a general warranty deed assures good and marketable title to the buyer and will defend the tile to the property from all persons. In contrast, a seller conveying property by a quit claim deed conveys only what title the seller may have to the property, with no warranty as to ownership or defects in the title.

Q: What is a disclosure statement?

A: A disclosure statement is a form some states require a property seller to complete and provide to the buyer, disclosing certain defects and other information about the property. The disclosure requirements vary by state.

Q: What are some typical restrictions imposed on property owners?

A: Real estate owners can’t do whatever they want on their property. Federal laws provide environmental restrictions, while local ordinances control everything from noise levels to fence height. Local law is also the usual source of zoning rules, which limit the uses of property in certain areas. State laws typically regulate who can access property and how boundaries are established and changed.

Private agreements and other restrictions may also control property use. For example, a development may contain restrictive covenants regarding lot size, architectural design, vehicle parking, and other details.

Q: What is joint tenancy?

A: Joint tenancy is an arrangement in which more than one person owns a piece of property. Many spouses own their property as joint tenants, with equal shares in the property. Joint tenancy can include a right of survivorship, which allows the property to transfer to the other tenants when one joint tenant dies.

Joint tenancy is just one way that people can hold property jointly. Tenancy in the entirety is similar to joint tenancy, except each spouse holds an undivided half of the property. Tenants in common can own unequal shares of property and is a common way for commercial partners and cohabiting unmarried couples to hold property.

An attorney can help a real estate purchaser to determine which form of ownership is most beneficial under his or her specific circumstances.

Q: What happens to a deed after it is signed and notarized?

A: A signed deed should be recorded, or filed, in the appropriate land records office, usually in the county in which the property is located. The office, which has a different name in different states, is typically called the County Recorder’s Office, the Land Registry Office, the Registrar, or Register of Deeds. To record the deed, a person must deliver the signed, original deed to the land records office, and the clerk will stamp the deed with the date and officially record the transaction. The county will charge a small fee to record the deed. Recording the deed gives public notice of the change in ownership and the interests in the property.

Q: How do mortgages work?

A: When a bank or other financial institution provides a loan for the purchase of real estate, a mortgage interest is created. The bank’s loan is secured by an interest in the property. State laws interpret mortgages differently, resulting in different consequences if the borrower fails to make a payment. Mortgages can be fixed rate (interest rates and monthly payments stay the same throughout the life of the loan) or adjustable (interest rates may vary with economic changes and monthly payments change accordingly). Some government programs offer special mortgage rates or programs for veterans or other individuals. Some homeowners will take on a second mortgage or a home equity loan secured by their property for home improvement or other financial needs. All of these mortgage interests can be foreclosed if the homeowner does not meet his or her financial obligations under the loan.

Q: What happens in a mortgage foreclosure?

A: If a homeowner fails to make mortgage payments, the lender may foreclose on the property. Depending on state law and the terms of the mortgage contract, the lender may do a statutory foreclosure without going to court or a judicial foreclosure in court. State laws provide strict regulations regarding proper notices and opportunities to pay before the property is sold in a foreclosure sale. In several states, a homeowner may stay in his or her home during a foreclosure. A lender may want to avoid foreclosure and its costs by working out an agreement with the homeowner, frequently accepting interest-only payments or partial payments in order to assist the homeowner. If your home mortgage is at risk of foreclosure, you should consult with an attorney as soon as possible to discuss your options including, without limitation, loan modification, short sale, deed in lieu of foreclosure and bankruptcy.

Contact Our West Palm Beach Real Estate Attorneys

To speak to an experienced West Palm Beach real estate attorney about your legal concerns, contact us at the Law Offices of Larry E. Bray for an initial consultation.

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