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A person buying a house or a corporation acquiring a plot for expanding its business, all are party to property transactions but most of the time awareness about real estate laws is very low resulting in disputes or legal hassles. Getting mired in litigation after completing the proceedings is detrimental for any business house while an individual putting hard-earned money into a dream house only to know that the asset obtained is disputed is bound to suffer undue mental stress. No matter how attractive a prospect looks, legal advice before finalizing any such deal should be sought to protect oneself from any trouble or financial losses.
Any prospective buyer should do a thorough scrutiny of the title or the proof of possession of the seller so as to eliminate any contentious issue that may result in any complications in future. A copy of the title deed registered with the respective incorporating authority with its seal stating the nature of ownership- freehold or leasehold, must be obtained and verified with the authority by asking a real estate lawyer to apply for it. All the evidence showing the number of times the property changed hands and documents describing this must be authenticated too. When buying an apartment in a housing complex, verify that the piece of land on which the structure stands has been acquired rightfully with no legal issues surrounding it.
Ascertaining the identity of the deed-holder is as important as the validation of the real estate and one must make sure that the person in question is a legal resident of the country and if not so enjoys the right to own and sell a tangible asset. In case of joint ownership, the same process must be applied to all the people named in the deed and If the holder of the title is an organization, checking for its legal status apart from its eligibility to trade such an article is compulsory along with confirming that the person dealing and signing the paperwork has been authorized to do so.
The ever-changing needs of the society result in alterations and amendments to regulations and real estate laws are no different. With rapid urbanization and industrialization, conversion of or changing the use of land is also happening regularly but every state has different rules regarding this and if the estate is being bought for such purposes then a check is required to make sure that the site being purchased for the purpose is cleared for conversion. Zoning laws regulate the use of land in an area and studying the master plan will help in identifying the locations suitable for the purpose and if the actual use of plot chosen is different from the one intended, then legal advice must be taken on the required conversion process. One must also ensure that the environmental laws of the region also do not pose any problems in going ahead with development plans.
Tax and Loan Payment
It is pertinent to ask for property tax receipts in order to verify that all taxes have been paid and rechecking with municipal authorities must be undertaken to establish the veracity of the same. Besides, one should also ask for all the latest utility bills and check whether they have been paid or not. In case of arrears, make it clear that you will not be proceeding ahead with deliberations until they have been settled. If the present owner was still repaying the loan taken for the acquisition, analyze the documents for fines or restrictions on early payment of the remaining amount.
Visiting the site in person and ensuring that the dimensions at the location match with the details mentioned in the documents and no encroachments are there besides the condition of the premises being the same as described in the papers. In case of a plot, ask the proprietor to demarcate the boundary while examining traits like unobstructed access or any other element that may hinder its utilization.
Easements and Encumbrances
Having prior knowledge of any right of way given to an individual or an authority is beneficial in making an informed choice and inquire about it.
A common problem most buyers suffer is the realization after completing the purchase that the previous owner or agent had not taken the necessary permits for carrying out certain modifications. Make inquiries about any changes on the ground from the building plan and if the required licenses are absent, specifically ask for them.
Reading the whole agreement yourself and taking legal advice in case of ambiguous fine print is invaluable and must be practiced every time in order to ensure trouble-free closure of the deal. It is a tedious process but an extremely vital one as it ensures the safety of your investment and can be eased if a professional well-versed in real estate laws is hired for the purpose. A property is a valuable asset and it requires diligent and methodical approach as not doing so will result in loss of mental peace along with financial setback.
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