Real Estate Law
The range of our real estate practice is broad. We are equipped handle everything from representing individuals in residential real estate transactions to representing developers in complex development plans. For more information about our Real Estate Practice, chose a topic below:
Commercial Real Estate
Real Estate Closings
Zoning and Land Use
Mortgages and Refinancing
Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Real Estate Law
What are your charges?
This is a difficult question to answer, but generally the less time we spend on a matter, the lower our fee will be. Conversely, the more time we are required to spend on a matter, the more we must charge. It is determined on a case-by-case matter.
What is a purchase and sales agreement?
This is a contract between two parties, a Seller and a Buyer, to sell property. In a sale of real estate, the agreement must be in writing and contain the consideration and the essential terms of the agreement to be enforced.
What is a closing?
A closing is when all parties to a purchase and sales agreement meet, the seller delivers a deed to the buyer, and the buyer pays the seller the stated amount in the contract of sale. The charges for which the seller is responsible for are deducted from the sales proceeds. These are called adjustments and normally include final water and sewer bills, trash, taxes, recording fees, and any other unpaid bills. Usually, several documents are required to be executed and delivered at the closing. If a mortgage lender is involved, the lender will require several other papers and documents to be signed.
When can a seller get his money?
The deed must be recorded at the registry of deeds or land court office of the countybefore the seller is given his money or proceeds. This is to make sure there are no attachments or other liens placed on the property.
What is a deed?
The deed is the document or instrument whereby the seller conveys the real estate or property to the buyer for the stated price. It must be in writing and should be recorded at the registry of deeds or land court office of the appropriate county.
What is a homestead?
A homestead, authorized by the General Laws of Massachusetts, allows an owner of real estate occupied by that person and his family to protect an amount allowed by law from judgment or execution. For more information, see our Estate Planning section.
What is a life estate?
A life estate is created by granting an interest in real estate to a life tenant for life, then to another in fee or by reservation to the grantor in a conveyance to another person.
What is a promissory note?
A promissory note is a document in writing whereby a borrower promises to pay its lender, be it a bank, mortgage company, or private lender, the amount borrowed. The promissory note will contain the terms of repayment of the loan, such as the rate of interest, the amount of the payments, the amounts and intervals of payment, usually monthly, and the time in which full payment must be made. The person to whom the money is loaned is called the borrower.
What is a mortgage?
A mortgage is a document executed by the borrower to provide security to a lender for the amount borrowed or loaned by the borrower. This results in a lien on the property given as security.
What is a good faith estimate?
A good faith estimate is an estimate of the charges associated with a mortgage loan provided by the lender when an application for a loan is submitted to it.
What is an APR?
An APR, the annual percentage rate, is determined by a formula which takes into consideration certain charges considered to be prepaid finance charges, usually prepaid interest, points and other fees. The APR is usually slightly higher than the true rate of interest.
What is title to property?
Title to property refers to the form of ownership or how the property is held. Title can be held in various forms or ways, such as individual, as joint tenants, as tenants in common, as tenants by the entirety (the usual form of ownership for a husband and wife), or in a trust. Title can also be held by a partnership, corporation, limited liability company or a limited liability partnership.