Learn more about Real Estate Law

Real estate law encompasses the rights to possess, transfer use and enjoy land and the permanent manmade additions attached to it.

A wide body of federal and state statutes as well as common law or case law governs real estate transactions. Common examples are transfers in interests of property, landlord tenant law and real property financing including deeds and mortgages.

Individual states will have significantly different real estate law from each other. However, the Federal Fair Housing Act is probably the biggest piece or real estate law, which applies to all states. The act prohibits discrimination in real estate transactions because of race, color, religions, sex or national origin. Additionally, general contract law principles will apply to all real estate transactions.

Another big part of real estate law is a legal concept called marketable title. This means that the property you wish to sell to another must be valid to sell in that it is not subject to any regulations that would inhibit the future owner.

Some people who own a house find out only when they begin the process to sell their property that an extra person has an interest in the property, which would mean they could not transfer the entire interest in the property to someone else. Additionally, the statute of frauds governs all real estate sales, in non-legalese this simply means that the transaction must be in writing.

Mortgage law, deeds and insurance titles are some of the most common areas for real estate lawyers. The law in these areas changes drastically from state to state, so finding a local lawyer for these issues is essential.  

In order to pass a valid title, a deed with a proper description of the land must be executed and delivered. Some states require that the deed be officially recorded to establish ownership of the property and provide notice with the state of its transfer.

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