The town of Saugus, Massachusetts may be a small community of around 27,000, but it has a well-earned reputation as a safe, comfortable and pleasant environment in which to raise a family or to retire. Whether you are just starting a family, investing in your first home, or upgrading to a larger residence in Saugus, you will need the services of an experienced Saugus real estate lawyer at every stage of the transaction.
Your real estate agent should be familiar with the Saugus community, but your attorney should also be one who understands the real estate market, the various zoning and municipal codes in Saugus that could affect your investment and how to resolve the issues that can complicate your transaction. Also, your real estate lawyer does much more in ensuring that your real estate experience is satisfactory and that it proceeds with a minimum of complications.
Why Do You Need a Real Estate Lawyer?
Massachusetts law requires that an attorney supervise residential real estate closings. The attorney can be one representing the buyer or seller, but it is best that you have your own attorney looking out for your best interests prior to, as well as during, the closing.
When you sign a contract to purchase property, you are entering into a binding contract. Most laws regarding these transactions protect the seller, so if you are buying you will want to ensure that there are no provisions that may obligate you to do or pay for expenses that the seller is normally expected to handle or agree to provisions that can jeopardize the return of your deposit should the transaction fall through.
Do you know what to ask the seller about the property you are buying? Sellers are obligated to disclose about what they do know about the home but they may overlook certain facts or simply feel they are not material. Your attorney can ask certain questions about the home that are not included in the disclosure and if you or your attorney feel that these facts are material to the transaction, these should be included in the agreement.
You also need to protect your deposit or earnest money in the event certain dates pass without extensions such as the mortgage contingency and you are unable to get approved financing. If there are other obstacles to the sale, an experienced attorney can counsel you on what could be done to remove or resolve these in a fair and satisfactory manner so the deal can proceed.
The Role of a Saugus Closing Lawyer
As indicated, a real estate lawyer is required at your residential property closing. Your attorney can perform the following functions regarding the closing process:
- Perform a title examination. Your title goes back 50 years and it needs to be checked for title defects in the chain of title. If you are a new home buyer, you are required to be served with a certificate of title. If a lien appears on the title or someone else is claiming title, then your attorney can work to clear it. Sometimes these can be difficult to resolve, which is why you need someone with extensive experience.
- Title certification review. The certificate may contain municipal charges on the property. You will also apprised of the real estate taxes.
- Ensure issuance of title insurance. The attorney arranges this for the lender and buyer and may recommend that you obtain your own insurance that is more comprehensive in its coverage of potential title defects.
- Perform document delivery. This includes the promissory note, mortgage, truth in lending disclosures and the HUD-1 Settlement Statement. As buyer, you will receive the deed, smoke detector/CO2 certificates and final utility bills.
- Review and pay lender fees and disclosure costs.
- Advise you of unnecessary closing costs and negotiate these.
- Payoff the existing mortgage.
- Allocate and pay existing taxes.
- Fund the escrow account.
- Arrange for payment of transfer and recording fees.
- Pay realtor commissions.
- Review and submit the septic certification.
- If a condo, then obtain and serve the condominium 6(d) certification
- Distribute the sale proceeds.
Retain Real Estate Attorney Deborah Gold-Alexander
Deborah Gold-Alexander is a Saugus real estate lawyer who has nearly 30 years’ experience representing buyers and sellers at every stage of a real estate transaction and who has also acted as the closing agent at numerous closings in Saugus and in the surrounding communities. Ensure that your best interests are protected in what is typically the largest financial transaction you will ever be involved in with someone whom so many clients have placed their trust in over the years. Call her office today for a free, initial consultation about all your real estate questions and needs.