Real Estate Closing for Investment Properties Attorneys in Fort Lauderdale
Lawyers Experienced in Property Transactions
Although Florida law does not require buyers and sellers of real estate to hire an attorney, it is often wise to retain an attorney in order to protect your interests. When you are making an investment, such as by buying a rental property, it is crucial to make sure that your investment is protected. Some investors specifically focus on real estate owned (REO) or foreclosure properties. However, what a bank must disclose in these types of sales may be different from what a private party would need to disclose. If your goal is to make money, you should take steps only after consulting an attorney. Real estate closings for investment properties may be complicated, requiring the preparation of many significant documents. An attorney at Stok Kon + Braverman can make sure that you are protected.
Documents that are necessary at any real estate closing include a purchase and sale contract, a deed, a bill of sale, affidavits, a real estate transfer deed, a closing statement, a Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act (FIRPTA) certificate, and a Certificate of Non-Foreign Status. The attorney who handles all this paperwork generally conducts a title examination beforehand to make sure that you have clear and marketable title. Unlike your own attorney, a title insurance company that conducts a title examination does not represent a buyer or seller's interest, and it cannot provide you with legal advice about the consequences of issues that arise during a title search.
When a mortgage is involved, the attorney also helps the borrower deal with the mortgage contract. In some cases, the mortgage paperwork is complex, and a borrower may not understand the consequences of certain terms and requirements, particularly if the borrower is a first-time buyer.
In South Florida, a purchase and sale contract will describe the price, covenants and restrictions, acknowledged defects and easements, and the dates for various deadlines. Unlike a real estate agent, an attorney can provide advice about each of these terms.
For many investors, it may be wise to create a Limited Liability Company (LLC) as a vehicle for ownership of real estate in Florida. This allows an owner to avoid personal liability in connection with an investment property due to landlord-tenant issues and personal injury lawsuits, for example. If you choose to own the property in your individual capacity, your own assets may be subject to significant liability. Our attorneys can help with this paperwork and make sure that the property is titled in the name of the LLC. This business form is a pass-through entity for Florida tax purposes.
Florida has experienced a boom in real estate investments in recent years. The foreclosure and REO markets give investors a chance to buy homes from banks that urgently need buyers. However, a host of legal issues may arise in connection with real estate closings for investment properties. The lawyers at Stok Kon + Braverman can provide you with experienced legal counsel in connection with many complicated matters in this area. Our attorneys have represented condo owners, homeowners, landlords, tenants, business owners, property management companies, and private equity lenders. We serve clients throughout Broward County.