Home sales transactions are legal transactions which involve the sale and purchase of a residence. These types of transactions typically involve a home, but may also include other types of property, such as a condominium.

Home sales transactions typically involve a straight-forward sale of a new home between a buyer and the construction developer. In some cases, however, a home sales transaction may involve:

  • Owner-to-buyer sales, where the buyer purchases the home from the previous owner;
  • Sales from a bank or lending company, such as in a foreclosure sale; and
  • Sales involving the court system, such as in a judicial sale.

The laws that govern home sales transactions may vary by state. They may also vary according to the type of property that is being sold.

There are many parties who may be involved in a home sales transaction. These may include:

  • The buyer;
  • The seller;
  • A mortgage lender;
  • Other loan companies;
  • A property appraiser; and
  • In some cases, judicial officials.

Putting a home up for sale can be a complex project. A home sales transaction may involve a property that is worth a lot of money and, in many cases, holds a great deal of sentimental value for the owner. In some cases, a home sales transaction is conducted only between the owner and the purchaser.

However, in most home sales transactions, an agency relationship is necessary and the transaction may be complex. In many home sales transactions, each party will be represented by:

  • Real estate brokers;
  • Real estate agents;
  • Lawyers; and
  • Other professionals.

What are Some Legal Regulations for Home Sales Transactions?

In every home sales transaction, a legal writing is required in order to conduct and finalize the sale. This legal writing is known as a real estate contract, or a home sales contract.

Pursuant to the Statute of Frauds, all sales that involve real property must be in writing. In other words, a home sales transaction cannot be orally agreed upon because a court would not honor such a major transaction without the use of a valid, written document.

A real estate contract contains various provisions that are related to he home sale, including:

  • A description of the property being sold;
  • The final purchase price;
  • The terms of payment; and
  • Whether or not there are any outstanding issues with the home which need to be disclosed.

In many cases, home sales transactions are standardized. However, some may contain very specific provisions, including:

  • An exclusive right to sell;
  • Specific instructions regarding additions or changes to the structure of the home;
  • Non-litigation or arbitration clauses, where the parties agree not to sue each other in the event of a legal dispute; and
  • Other specific issues that need to be addressed.

There are also various other laws and regulations which apply to home sales transactions. Legal issues that should be considered during any home sale include:

  • The writing requirement. As previously noted, home sales contracts need to be in writing. The writing should be signed by all parties involved, and should conform to local and state laws;
  • Broker agreements. If a seller is working with a broker, they need to work out an agreement contract stating sales terms, broker fees, and other matters;
  • Appraisals. Disputes regarding the value of the home can be avoided by hiring a professional appraiser to determine the price;
  • Loan qualifications. A home loans is generally a main focus of many real estate lawsuits. A buyer may wish to check the loan qualification requirements in their area; and
  • Disclosures. The seller of a home is only required to make disclosures of defects up to a certain point. In many jurisdictions, it is up to a buyer to determine whether or not the home has any dangerous conditions or defects.

The types of real estate laws which may apply can vary based on the type of residence being sold, such as a home or a townhouse. They may also vary depending on the state and the zoning boundaries of the residence. Because of the many variables and laws involved, it is important to seek the assistance of a professional if an individual is putting their home on the market.

What if There Is a Dispute over a Home Sales Transactions?

Disputes regarding home sales transactions often require legal intervention. In these cases, a court will typically review the existing home sales contract in order to determine whether or not a violation has occurred.

In some cases, the dispute can only be resolved by a careful examination of the home sales transaction records. In other cases, a court may be required to conduct a more thorough analysis in order to resolve a dispute.

For example, if one party claims that the other party did not pay them correctly, the court may be required to examine bank statements in addition to the conduct of the buyer in order to determine what actually occurred. The court will also need to apply the laws of the jurisdiction to determine what the available remedies are.

In the majority of cases, a monetary damages award is sufficient to compensate a plaintiff for their losses. A damages award can often assist in compensating the injured party of losses associated with non-payment, fraud, or other violations.

In other cases, different methods may be required, such as an eviction notice or a forced sale of the home. In certain cases, a quiet title may assist in resolving the issue.

This type of proceeding is necessary when there is an issue regarding the title of the property, such as a dispute over the true owner and other issues, including debt or easements. A quiet title proceeding may assist in clearing the title of any encumbrances and, therefore, make the property marketable.

What are Common Legal Disputes in a Home Sales Transaction?

When an individual is dealing with a home for sale, there are certain legal issues which may arise. These are typically connected with very specific real estate issues, including:

  • A defective title;
  • Real estate fraud;
  • Issues with securing a mortgage. Closing is usually not possible until the buyer is able to secure a mortgage;
  • Disputes involving real estate listings;
  • Disagreements regarding the valuation of the property; and
  • Issues with:
    • previous ownership;
    • deeds;
    • titles; and
    • inheritance laws.

There are also many other types of disputes and issues which may arise in connection with a real estate contract. For example, there may be disputes regarding:

  • The final sales price;
  • The payment terms; and
  • Other issues.

In addition, a breach of a real estate contract can lead to a lawsuit.

Do I Need a Lawyer for Help with Home Sales Transactions?

It is essential to have the assistance of a real estate lawyer for any home sales transaction issues you may be facing. A home sale transaction is a major event in your life that must be executed legally and correctly in order to be valid.

Your attorney can assist you in preparing and completing the necessary documents for a home sale in order to ensure that the sale proceeds smoothly. In the event that a dispute arises out of your home sale or purchase, your attorney can assist you with filing the appropriate claim in court as well as represent you during any appearances.