We all know the famous legal loophole, “It’s in the fine print.” The clauses, or conditions, of a typical real estate sales contract aren’t usually difficult to see. However, if you don’t consider how some of them may be interpreted, they may be used as legal loopholes once you’ve signed on the dotted line.
If you’re getting ready to purchase a property, pay close attention to these real estate contract clauses to avoid running into problems after the contract is signed.
Buyers tend to expect a full property disclosure, so they are aware of any costly maintenance issues with the building. However, property disclosure clauses may make room for sellers who can claim they were unaware of issues later discovered by buyers.
It’s common for buyers to negotiate with sellers to include items that were showcased during the viewing of the property. These inclusions are items that are not attached permanently to the property, such as appliances, custom furnishings or even pool equipment. Personal property items are not usually included unless the buyer and seller make an agreement to include them.
It’s crucial that these negotiations are explicitly written into the contract to keep from losing out on characteristic items that may help rent or resell the home. Special inclusions can be as outlandish as the seller will agree to.
Writing inspection clauses into the contract can help you avoid buying into issues such as, termites, radon, mold, asbestos products, lead-based paint and more. However, a buyer usually has a limited amount of time to obtain and review a home inspection before otherwise cancelling the contract or requesting an extension.
Providing a survey
Contracting to provide an existing survey can help buyers understand who lives on the premises, so that collections and evictions can be made if necessary. Problems can arise if the seller does not have a survey or cannot provide one.
However, under this clause, the seller can still be responsible for purchasing and providing a new survey.
Before you’re ready to purchase, consult with a Real Estate lawyer who is familiar with taxation and contract laws in New Jersey. An attorney can help guide you through these clauses and more to help secure the conditions of your purchase.