We provide a variety of state-specific forms that you can use to handle basic real estate transactions. Some of the more important documents that are frequently used in real estate matters include:
Agreement to sell/purchase real estate: This is used to memorialize the agreement to buy and sell property. It contains basic clauses to cover situations that often arise, including:
- a Mortgage Contingency Clause, which provides that the sale is conditioned on the buyer being able to obtaining financing with a certain period of time;
- That the seller will provide a Warranty Deed for the property, and a Bill of Sale for any personal property included in the transaction;
- That certain items (often taxes and utilities) will be prorated and adjusted as of the closing date;
- That the seller represents that it has good title to the subject property.
Option to buy real estate agreement: This form is designed to be used to provide a potential purchaser with a time period in which to have an exclusive option to purchase a parcel of real estate. Typically, the agreement provides that in exchange for payment (which is often applied to the purchase price of the option is exercised), the buyer is given a period of time to accept the terms of a completed real estate contract. If the option is not exercised, the seller is then free to sell the property to another purchaser, and to keep the money paid for the option.
Deed: Any transfer of real estate must be in writing. A deed is a writing signed by the grantor (seller) transferring title to the property; there are different types of deeds, including:
Quitclaim Deed: The seller is conveying whatever interest he or she has in the property, without any guarantee that he or she actually owns any interest in the property;
Warranty Deed: This is the type of deed most commonly used in real estate transactions. It provides that the seller is conveying to the buyer a full and complete title to the land without any restrictions or debts. In other words, the grantor warrants good clear title.
Mortgage: A mortgage is a document that creates a security interest in a parcel of property. It must be used in conjunction with a Promissory Note. A Promissory Note, which is simply a promise that you will pay money, is used in virtually every loan transaction.