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Santa Rosa Real Estate Blog

Most common issues with titles

In real estate, titles are bundles of rights related to a piece of property wherein the owning party has either equitable interest or legal interest. Many startups have popped up in recent years that aim to simplify the title process. 

Anyone planning on investing in property should consider acquiring title insurance, which will help pay for any defects in a building after the sale. Here are some of the most typical title issues property owners have to contend with. 

Hidden expenses that can emerge during development

If you are an investor, finding a prime piece of real estate for development is certainly an exciting prospect. You are likely eager to get all the necessary inspections out of the way and make a deal as soon as possible so that you can start developing and making a profit. Even property that seems like a fantastic value can come with some unsavory expenses, though. 

There are countless hidden costs, in fact, associated with buying and developing a piece of land. Sometimes these costs arise from legal complications, and in such cases, you should consult with an attorney to better understand the situation. Sometimes, however, routine expenses such as the following can skyrocket the cost of your project:

What should developers look for in a potential investment?

If you are looking to develop a piece of land, there is certainly potential for a lucrative return on your investment. Owning property is one of the best investments you can make, as it will likely only appreciate in value. Not all investments are good, though, and all developers should be cautious before signing any paperwork to finalize a deal. There are a few key features you should look for first.

Consider the following three factors when you are in the market for an investment property. Whether you are a first-time investor or a seasoned veteran, you can benefit from paying attention to the following factors when it comes to buying an investment property.

3 things that must be included in disclosures

Selling a piece of real estate is a stressful endeavor. Even if you are a pro selling in a high-demand area, there are often complications that can demand extra attention. One of the most common sources of such complication is the disclosures. Disclosures are intended to reveal all relevant issues and potential problems relating to a piece of property—if they are incomplete, a seller can be held legally liable.

According to the California Department of Real Estate, in addition to disclosing relevant information, buyers and sellers should both visually inspect a property prior to entering a contract. Be on the lookout for the following three details during an inspection and in the disclosures of a property, too. 

3 common types of real estate broker malpractice

Part of your real estate transaction may have involved the professional assistance of a real estate broker or brokerage firm. A broker is different from an agent in that the former goes through additional, in-depth education, must take another exam to receive this higher license and generally has more experience.

Are you unsatisfied with the transaction because of something the broker did or did not do? Perhaps something went wrong, but you are not sure if the mistake warrants a lawsuit. Here are some of the most common forms of real estate broker malpractice to help you determine if you have a claim. Talking to an attorney is the best way to know what options are available for your situation.

Understanding rights of way and easements

You are considering a home purchase, but you notice there is an easement in the title deed. Additionally, you have heard about rights of way and easement issues while looking for your dream home. Can an easement change the way you feel about your home purchase? How might a right of way or easement affect Californians when they are living on properties that have them?

First, it may help to understand the different types of easements and rights of way that you might encounter in an average title. In legal terms, these give others the right to enter or use your property, usually for the purpose of accessing another property near yours. The following points explain further:

  • A right of way is an easement that allows someone the right to pass through your land, such as sharing your driveway to access a park beyond your property or taking a public path that cuts through your property at some point.
  • An easement might allow utility workers access to a portion of your land where equipment is located, such as a telephone pole or power box.
  • A negative easement is a clause that prohibits you from making changes that affect others. For example, you might not be able to add another story to your home if it would obstruct a scenic or historic view from nearby properties.

3 questions to ask a prospective real estate attorney

If you are considering buying or selling a property and you are facing a situation that is somewhat atypical or complicated, you may find it beneficial to hire a qualified, experienced real estate attorney to work on your behalf. Even seemingly simple real estate transactions sometimes turn into highly convoluted or hotly contested matters, and having someone who knows the ins and outs of the industry working on your behalf can mean the difference between finalizing a transaction and returning to the drawing board.

Hiring a lawyer is an investment, and it is therefore essential that you feel confident in the person that you are about to hire before you make things official. So, before you sign on with a particular real estate attorney, consider asking the following questions.

Top mistakes for commercial investors to avoid

Investing in California real estate can bring the payoffs you want - if you do it right. Learning about common mistakes to steer clear of when buying property can help you make investments wisely.

One trap investors fall into is believing they do not need an attorney's help to manage these often-complicated transactions. Even experienced and successful businesspeople can overlook or misunderstand important legal issues. Selecting the right real estate attorney can go a long way towards a successful purchase.

Some of the reasons your home might not be selling

Putting your house on the market can be exciting, but it is usually a stressful time as well. The housing market is especially competitive in California, and you will need to be sure your home is in top shape so you can get what you are asking for.

Whether this is the first home you are selling or the 10th, it can help to know the factors that push a property through closing quickly, as well as those that often cause a sale to stall. Contrary to what some might believe, it is not the fear that a home might be haunted or that someone died on the property. The following are some of the top reasons that homes on the market fall through the cracks:

  • The price of your home is too high for the current market. It might be a beautiful property in pristine condition, but housing prices are constantly fluctuating. You need to stay on top of pricing trends in your neighborhood.
  • The property needs repair. This cannot be stressed enough – you should take care of repair issues before putting your house on the market. Leaky pipes, drafty windows and cracks in the foundation are enough to send any buyer running.
  • Potential homeowners want to visualize themselves living in the house they are considering. Put your home in the best light by updating appliances and staging furnishings and accessories to look warm and inviting.
  • There is a health concern. If the home has an odor due to mildew, mold, smoke or pet urine, you will need to have a professional address the issue.
  • There are liens showing on the title or paid-off mortgage. Get in touch with the title company or mortgage company to correct these issues. In fact, it is always a good idea to consult with your home’s title company before listing.

3 key elements your real estate offer should include

When it comes to purchasing real estate in Santa Rosa, many people seem to think they just need to make the best offer price to buy a property. However, the purchasing process is much more complicated than that. Many things must take place before ownership of a property can legally change hands. 

If you are not careful, you could end up entering into a bad faith contract, losing money on a property that is unsellable, dealing with complications that prolong the length of time it takes for you to close the deal or becoming involved in a real estate contract dispute. Here are some key elements that your real estate purchase contract should have.