Real estate transactions are governed by numerous federal statutes and varying 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 expensive goods,
such as a car or a boat. 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. An experienced real estate attorney can help you sort through all of the difficult
decisions and negotiations involved in real estate transactions.
Frequently Asked Questions about Real Estate
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 a quitclaim
deed, a grant deed, or a warranty deed, transfer different interests. For example, a warranty deed
assures the buyer that the seller will defend his title to the property from all other persons.
A quitclaim deeds conveys only whatever title the seller owns, with no warranty against the claims of others.
Ocean County, New Jersey Real Estate Lawyer and Stafford Township Title Closing Attorney
Kelly & Visotcky in Manahawkin, New Jersey, provides legal representation to clients with real
estate and title insurance needs in Ocean County, including the communities of Manahawkin, Stafford
Township, Long Beach Township, Ship Bottom, Surf City, Harvey Cedars, Beach Haven, and Waretown,
Eagleswood, Lacey Township, Forked River, Toms River, Dover Township, Long Beach Township, Bayville,
Barnegat, Tuckerton, Little Egg Harbor, Ocean, Monmouth, Burlington, and Atlantic Counties.
Our real estate contract lawyer has 23 years of experience representing borrowers with land use, acquisition,
construction, working capital, and asset based financing. We assist a broad range of individuals and entities
with contract law, and have facilitated construction transactions and loans for inland and shoreline housing,
residential subdivisions, shopping centers, motels, apartments, condominiums, assisted living facilities,
mixed-use developments, and more. He has also negotiated commercial real estate leases and sales agreements
for hospitals and restaurant chains, and companies such as Home Depot, and Lowe's Home Improvement.
If you need a highly skilled Ocean County real estate contract attorney to handle matters involving a
commercial or residential real estate transaction in New Jersey, contact us today to schedule an initial c
onsultation. Evening and weekend hours are available by appointment.
Contact the real estate contract lawyer at Kelly & Visotcky for high quality, effective legal counsel.
We provide competitive fee plans, weekend and after-hours meetings by appointment, and FREE initial consultations.
Kelly & Visotcky Law Firm
Ocean County Real Estate Contract Lawyer
General Real Estate Law
Real estate law includes both federal and state issues, with the state-level rules varying widely from
jurisdiction to jurisdiction. These state and federal laws encompass everything from ownership of land
and buildings to related issues such as financing, leasing, construction, taxes, and environmental laws.
A competent and experienced real estate attorney can protect a party's interests in both routine
and complex transactions and disputes.
A seller may employ a real estate broker to solicit potential buyers for his or her property.
The seller and the broker sign a listing agreement, obliging the broker to work to find a buyer
and the seller to pay the broker's commission if a sale results. A buyer may employ a real estate
broker to locate suitable property. Real estate brokers are generally subject to rigorous licensing
standards established by each state. As an agent, a real estate broker or salesperson has duties
and obligations to the person who hired him or her. If an agreement to purchase the property is
made, that agreement is strictly between the seller and buyer, and the broker is not a party
to that agreement and generally makes no promises about the property.
Real Estate Contracts and Transfers
The agreement to sell between a real estate buyer and seller is governed by the general principles of
contract law. The statute of frauds requires that real property contracts be in writing. Title to real
estate must be marketable to be free from liability, which means that it must be free and clear of all
encumbrances, liens, clouds, litigation risks, or other title defects. To ensure marketable title, the
buyer typically employs an attorney or a title insurance company to perform a title search. In a title
search, the searcher examines the public records in the county in which a property is located to map a
chain of title by examining all the recorded deeds concerning the property. The title searcher will also
determine if there are any encumbrances on the property, such as mortgages, unpaid real estate taxes,
liens for municipal improvements, unpaid federal taxes, government claims, legal judgments, foreclosures,
condemnations, covenants, and easements. A title insurance company will insure the buyer against losses
caused by the title's invalidity.
To pass title, the seller must execute and deliver a deed with a proper description of the land.
Many states require that the deed be officially recorded to establish ownership of the property
and to provide notice of its transfer to subsequent purchasers.
The most common method of financing a real estate transaction is through a loan secured by a mortgage
on the property. A mortgage involves the transfer of an interest in land as security for an obligation.
A borrower typically repays a mortgage in installments that include both interest and principal payments.
If the borrower doesn't make payments, foreclosure can result, with the lender declaring that the entire
mortgage debt is due immediately. Failure to pay the mortgage debt once foreclosure occurs results in the
sale of the property to satisfy any remaining mortgage debt.
The actual foreclosure process depends on state law, the terms of the mortgage, and whether other
liens exist on the property. Many states allow late payments to avoid foreclosure, and many lenders
attempt to work out a payment plan to avoid a foreclosure. If a lender is threatening foreclosure,
a borrower should immediately contact a competent and experienced real estate attorney to protect
the borrower's interests and pursue all available resolutions.
Real estate transactions and disputes involve many laws, which vary greatly from state to state.
If you are buying or selling real estate or are involved in a dispute regarding real estate,
it is in your best interest to get in touch with an experienced real estate attorney to
ensure that your rights are protected.
DISCLAIMER: This site and any information contained herein are intended for
informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Seek
competent legal counsel for advice on any legal matter.