Lease-Purchases: The Importance of a Real Estate Lawyer

In dealing with lease-purchases, buyers can benefit from working with experts in real estate law. There are many potential issues that could come up with this type of transaction, and a real estate lawyer will help you lower the probability of problems. Here are a few things to consider about why it's important to hire a lawyer to help you go over all of the fine print in a lease-purchase contract.

New Buyers

When you enter into a lease-purchase agreement, you are essentially renting a home for a certain period of time and then purchasing it after the lease is up. You will have to pay a certain sum of option money at the beginning of the transaction. This option money is supposed to guarantee that you get to purchase the house at the predetermined amount. However, sometimes sellers will get anxious and try to sell the property to someone else before this can take place. Many people have been burned because they listened to a seller that told them they had to come up with the money to purchase a house quickly or it would go to someone else. If you hire a real estate attorney, he or she will be able to go over the contract with you and explain your rights to you. Many times, claims like these are completely false and made in an attempt to get you to pay more for the house and purchase it quickly. Therefore, the fee that you have to pay to a real estate attorney can be well worth it if it saves you from losing the home.

Sorting Out Maintenance

One of the tricky issues that often comes with a lease-purchase agreement is maintenance. Sometimes the seller will handle all of the maintenance until the property is conveyed to the new owner. Other times, the seller expects the buyer to handle all of the maintenance including taxes and insurance on the property. This could be a point of real contention between the buyer and seller. In order to avoid any problems on the front end, it is best to have a real estate lawyer there to help you sort it out. He or she will go over the contract with you and explain exactly what you are responsible for and exactly what the seller is responsible for.

Rent Application

It can also be to your advantage to hire a real estate attorney to explain how your rent will be applied. In many cases, part of the money that you pay towards rent will go towards the purchase price of the property. However, sometimes a seller will not apply this to the purchase price and just keep the money. By bringing in a lawyer, you can often avoid this problem and make sure that your money is going where it is supposed to go.

Legal Recourse

If you believe that you have been wronged in a lease-purchase transaction, a real estate lawyer can help you determine what your options for legal recourse are. He or she can help you choose the best option for your situation.