Delaware Real Estate Settlements
Get Through Closing Day with Whitehead Law
Real estate settlement or “closing” is the final step of buying or selling a home. Due to the size of the transaction, the process has many steps, involves many parties, and is regulated by federal law. Whether you need help navigating closing, or something goes wrong during your real estate settlement, Whitehead Law is here to help.
We have more than 20 years of combined legal experience, and we do not back down when protecting our client’s rights.
Call us at (302) 663-7975 for help with Delaware real estate settlements.
Steps of the Real Estate Settlement Process
The real estate settlement process begins long before closing day. Buyers must perform a title search, complete a home inspection, and sign mortgage documents before endorsing property transfer paperwork and transferring funds.
Three days before closing day, the buyers will have an opportunity to see the closing disclosure form, which names the price of the transaction and the parties involved. After receiving this document, buyers will have a chance to inspect the property to make sure it is ready for purchase. The previous owners should be moved out, and the home should be in the agreed-upon condition.
Usually, buyers have their real estate attorneys review the closing disclosure form before moving forward. In Delaware, licensed attorneys MUST be involved in real estate settlements. Other parties involved in the real estate settlement process include title agents, real estate agents, escrow agents, and loan officers.
Buying or selling a home is not as simple as transferring the money from the buyer to the seller. Because the process is so complex, and there are so many parties involved, there is plenty of potential for mistakes – and even exploitation. This is one reason the state of Delaware requires attorneys to be present for these transactions.
If you need an attorney to supervise your closing transaction or something goes wrong during the real estate settlement process, do not hesitate to contact our Delaware closing attorney.
What Is the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA)?
The Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) is a federal law designed to protect buyers and sellers during closing. RESPA sets special rules for lenders, mortgage brokers, and servicers of home loans, encourages transparency, and limits the use of escrow accounts.
Most people take out mortgages to purchase their homes, so mortgage brokers have a lot of influence on real estate settlements. Under RESPA, home loan servicers may not require buyers or sellers to work with certain title insurance companies, demand excessively large fees, or be dishonest about how much a transaction is going to cost. The parties involved in a real estate settlement are also prohibited from giving each other kickbacks or payment for doing business with one another.
Everyone involved in your real estate settlement should be serving buyers and/or sellers. The parties involved in closing are hired to facilitate the complex transaction – not take advantage of borrowers.
If you suspect a lender has violated RESPA, contact a Delaware closing lawyer immediately.
In some cases, you only have one (1) year to bring a lawsuit under RESPA.
Our Delaware real estate settlement attorney can supervise the closing process to prevent RESPA violations or enforce RESPA after a violation has occurred.
Why Delaware Is Different
Many states do not require attorneys during the real estate settlement process, but Delaware does. According to the Delaware courts and the legal precedent of In the Matter of Mid-Atlantic Settlement Servs., et al. 755 A. 2d 389 (Del. 2000), lawyers must evaluate the legal rights and obligations of the parties, represent the buyer in matters related to the title, explain the ramifications of real estate transactions and home loans, and supervise the disbursement of funds.
You must have a lawyer to conduct a closing when buying or selling property in Delaware.
Whitehead Law would be proud to represent you. Our family name is respected throughout Delaware for our integrity and track record of success. We will fight for you when it matters, but we want you to feel comfortable every step of the way.
You should feel at home from the moment you walk into our office – and in your new home!
Call us at (302) 663-7975 or contact us online to let us represent you during your Delaware real estate settlement.