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For Sale By Owner Transactions

Reliable Real Estate Lawyers Offer Guidance on Selling Your Home

At Boss Law, we know buying a home is a major investment, which is why we understand that our clients want to sell their property for as much money as possible. Although people often try to cut costs when they sell their homes, real estate transactions in the state of Florida can be extremely complicated if you aren’t familiar with the process or this area of law.

What to Consider When Selling a Home Yourself

If you are selling your home, our St. Petersburg attorneys offer the following considerations:

Mandatory Real Estate Disclosures

If you are selling property in Florida, then you must disclose any facts or conditions about the property that can have a substantial impact on its value or desirability. Sellers in Florida must disclose dangers linked to radon gas and information about any mandatory membership and monthly fees if the property is in a community regulated by a condo or homeowner's association.

If you are selling coastal property, then Florida Statutes §161.5 states that you must disclose the potential for erosion and that the property might be subject to regulations regarding construction, rigid coastal protection structures, beach nourishment, and the protection of marine turtles.

Although many buyers might want to know if a property they are considering has been the location of a homicide, suicide, or death, Florida Statute §689.25 states that sellers are not required to disclose this information because it is not considered a material fact.

Title Search & Insurance

A title search determines the legal status of a property and if there are any liens, encumbrances, or mortgages on the property. It essentially verifies whether the seller has the right to transfer ownership. A title search can range from $300 to $600.

Although the person responsible for paying for title insurance searches varies depending on the county, title costs can be negotiated in the contract. In general, the seller pays for the title insurance and chooses the title company, but sometimes, the parties agree to split the costs.

Purchase Contracts

Purchase documents for residential real estate deals generally include the following:

  • Closing Disclosure: This document details all closing costs for the buyer and the seller. Buyers must have this document at least three days before closing so they have enough time to ask questions and resolve any issues before signing.
  • The Deed: This document is the legal description of the property. After it is signed, it must be filed with the county recorder of deeds to officially transfer the property from the seller to the buyer.
  • The Bill of Sale: The bill of sale lists all property being transferred from the seller to the buyer. this includes items like furnishings, appliances, light fixtures, water features, and security systems.
  • Seller’s Affidavit: As a seller, you must provide the buyer with a notarized statement attesting that they have rightful ownership of the property. The seller’s affidavit also states any potential claims on the title, such as outstanding leases, liens, boundary line disputes, or pending sales contracts.
  • Abstract of Title: The abstract is a summary of the public records for who can claim ownership over the property. This document should be carefully examined. Even with a title search, the buyer is still liable for any claims that are made on the property.
  • Tax Declarations: Buyers and sellers must pay taxes whenever a property is sold. The documentary stamp tax is due when the deed is filed with the county clerk. Additionally, there is a proration agreement that states how much the buyer and seller will pay to split the outstanding property taxes.

Why Do I Need a Real Estate Attorney?

Although you hope your real estate transaction goes smoothly, there are a variety of unexpected issues that can arise an negatively impact the sale. That is why it is important to seek guidance from a qualified real estate lawyer who can help you draft, review, and file all of the necessary legal paperwork.

Our knowledgeable lawyers at Boss Law can ensure your transaction complies with all of Florida's real estate laws. We will take the time to become familiar with your situation so that we can deliver comprehensive legal representation that is tailored to your unique needs. We make it our mission to get you top-dollar value for your real estate transaction, so please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our firm so we can put our skills and resources to work for you.

Call our law office today at (727) 877-3188 get started on your free consultation.

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