Whether you are buying your first home, or your next investment property, buying a home in New York is always an important financial decision.
The New York real-estate market is not only complex and complicated, but the past two years have seen a lot of significant changes in the market, including a rise in prices, increased government regulations, and changes in lending practices.
With years of experience in overseeing New York real-estate transactions, representing both sellers and buyers, I strongly advise that you seek adequate legal counsel so that your investment and your best interests are looked after.
It sounds a bit harsh for me to say this, but not handling every aspect of your real estate transaction properly could turn your dream of homeownership into a nightmare.
In this article I will give you a brief overview of five essential steps you will be going through as part of buying a home in New York.
At the bottom of each step’s description, you will find a link to an additional resource containing a more complete description of each step should you want more information. Taking a few minutes to read each step’s additional information will help you be fully prepared.
Piccinnini Law provides legal representation for real estate buyers, sellers, and investors, alike. To schedule a consultation or to speak to a New York real estate attorney, please call us at (516) 500-2110.
1) Contract Review
THE As a homebuyer, once your seller has accepted your offer it’s time to finalize the terms of the real estate transaction. This is done in a real estate contract.
A real estate contract is a legal document that describes the agreements, terms, and conditions for both you, as a buyer, and also the seller. The contract will contain each party’s respective rights and obligations throughout the real estate buying/selling process.
Reviewing this contract with qualified legal representation is very important. Here, an experienced New York real estate attorney will help ensure that the contract contains all the necessary language so that your best interests are covered, so that you are given a fair deal, and so that the contract contains appropriate contingency provisions to protect you, should something not go as planned.
2) Title Search
A title search is a detailed explanation of a property’s historical records.
A title search is important because it will certify that the New York property you are purchasing is being purchased from the rightful and legal owner, and that there are no liens, judgments, tax arrears, or other legal claims made against the property or the property owners which would create a problem for you to assume ownership or reduce the property’s value.
If you are requesting financing to purchase your property, your real estate contract will usually give you thirty to forty-five days to obtain financing and complete the real estate transaction.
Prior to accepting your offer, a seller will usually want to see some kind of commitment or pre-approval from your lender to ensure you will be able to receive the necessary financing to purchase the property.
Once your offer on a property has been accepted, act in good faith and promptly apply for a mortgage or home loan, and work to fulfill any requests made by your lender throughout this process.
When signing your real estate contract, be sure that it covers what should happen if you are unable to secure financing within thirty to forty-five days.
Usually, per the terms of the contract negotiated the seller will be able to cancel the contract and should return your initial deposit or provide an extension at the seller’s discretion.
Once you have obtained approval on your financing, the lender’s attorney has approved the file for funding, and title due diligence has been completed, you will be cleared to close on your property and a closing date will be set where both parties can attend.
4) Clear to Close & 5) Closing
The closing is the final step of the New York real estate transaction process. This is where you sign the final papers to purchase your new property, and where the deed of the property is officially transferred into your name.
Closing on a property in New York requires a lot of documents and paperwork. Here, your real estate attorney will help ensure all final closing statements and documents are prepared and correctly worded to ensure the transaction properly closes. After the closing, you will receive a closing statement from your attorney summarizing the transaction.
Once the closing is complete, you will be given possession of the property and the property will officially be yours.