If you are in the market to purchase a new home, you might be wondering how a real estate closing attorney can help. Importantly, Massachusetts law requires that an attorney be present for the closing when a home loan is involved. Not only can an attorney ensure that everything goes smoothly at the closing table, but they can also offer critical insight and guidance throughout the entire process.
A buyer’s real estate attorney will generally help with the following:
- Conduct the Title Examination
A real estate attorney will conduct a title search and carefully examine the title to the property for any defects and issues. They will evaluate whether there are any restrictions, encroachments, or easements — and if clear title can be transferred to the buyer. In the event that there are any problems with the title, the attorney will work to resolve them.
- Coordinate Title Insurance
Title insurance is meant to protect both the purchaser and the lender should a future issue arise with the title of the property. Specifically, title insurance provides a safeguard against others who might claim ownership in the property, fraud, forgery, and any other items that are indicated in the policy.
- Review Purchase and Sale Agreements
The Purchase and Sale Agreement is the governing contract between the buyer and seller. A skilled real estate attorney knows how to identify any advantages to the other party and can ensure the language protects your interests. A real estate attorney will generally also produce a Rider that provides additional due diligence.
- Prepare the Closing Documents
Buying or selling a home involves a considerable amount of paperwork — and it is often confusing and overwhelming for those who are not familiar with it. A real estate attorney will explain what each document is before you sign it. They will also prepare the settlement statement and deed, as well as handle any notarization.
- Attend the Closing
A real estate attorney attends the closing and ensures that your rights are protected. The attorney will coordinate the delivery of documents with the lender, handle the payment and allocate payment for real estate taxes and utilities. They will also collect and distribute funds to the correct parties — this includes county fees for recording, attorney’s fees, commissions, and proceeds. After the closing, the attorney will submit the deed and mortgage documents for recording to become part of the public record.
Learn More About CLG’s Residential Real Estate Practice
Whether you are buying or selling a home, a real estate attorney can help you navigate the closing process and ensure your rights are safeguarded at the closing table. Continental Law Group represents buyers and sellers for residential real estate transactions in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. With offices conveniently located in Boston and Salem, Massachusetts — as well as Portsmouth, New Hampshire — CLG offers high-quality legal services for a wide variety of residential and commercial real estate matters. Call (617) 616-8210 to learn more about how we can help.