Real Estate School 101
Real Estate School by Julianne E. Murray, Esquire
Buying a house is probably the most significant purchase you will make in your life. In a perfect world, you would know and understand the paperwork involved in it. But, because of the nature of banking, and real estate laws, a number of documents and signatures is massive so many purchasers don’t even try to get a grip on what they are signing. They just sign where they are told. I’m not going to attempt to explain every document – but I am going to explain some very important ones and the process so it isn’t’ all such a big mystery.
Here is the disclaimer: The information below is NOT intended to be an all-encompassing explanation of the law. It is designed to give you an overview only. You should ask for further information or clarification if you want more details.
Getting from Contract to the Attorney of YOUR Choice
So let’s do the basics. A real estate contract identifying the property and the agreed-to price has been signed by both the purchaser and the seller. In most instances, this ratified contract is then forwarded to an attorney’s office to handle the closing. Delaware is what is called an attorney state which means that an attorney must preside over the real estate settlement. The purchaser has the right to choose the attorney, the Delaware Supreme Court has been very clear that purchasers need to know who is representing them and to freely choose that person or firm. Many times, the purchaser doesn’t know an attorney or have an opinion so many real estate agents will recommend one. Even in those situations, as a result of the Supreme Court, the attorney will send a letter to the purchaser identifying him or herself, explaining the process and asking the purchaser to sign a form affirming that they are choosing that attorney.
Once chosen, the attorney’s office will begin working on the closing which we will cover another day. For now, I will say that one of their duties is to prepare documents for the purchaser and seller to sign. In my next blog, I will write about some of those very important documents, namely the deed, note, and mortgage. Later I will write about the HUD-1 settlement sheet, and then about title work and the settlement itself. In the meantime, if you have any question please feel free to call my office at 855-9300. We are just off the circle Georgetown at 215 E. Market Street.