Appoint A Lawyer!
An experienced Law Firm is absolutely essential during Real Estate Transactions
An Article by Mr Michalis Economides, CEO and Founder of Chambersfield Economides Kranos, Advocates & Legal Consultants
Article Publication: GOLD Magazine June 2017.
The purchase of a property is generally considered to be a long-term investment so individuals and corporate buyers alike should take proper action before, during and at the closing of a deal, in order to safeguard their interests.
On the other side of the arrangement, sellers also need to preserve their rights, in order to avoid any possible negative consequences that may occur during the closing of the deal, such as cancellation, financing problems or other tax and legal implications.
When deciding to acquire a property, the best investment that any individual or corporation can make is in the appointment of a professional law firm with experience in the real estate market. This is of the utmost importance, in order to ensure that the correct and complete due diligence procedures will be carried out.
Furthermore, the appointment of a professional law firm reduces risks and the time spent with the authorities, while safeguarding the buyer’s rights by ensuring that all the required procedures are correctly followed at the land registry and any relevant financial institutions.
Due diligence includes an official land registry search for all possible mortgages, charges or other encumbrances. Further procedures entail a review of the issued permits, title deeds, zoning regulations and other important legal aspects, in order to ensure that the purchaser is safeguarded at every stage of the process. Law firms are needed during these types of transaction (acquisition and transfer of real estate) in order to ascertain that both the purchaser and the seller are equally protected.
Our experience in numerous and daily real estate transactions has taught us that not all cases are simple and straightforward. For example, a property acquisition might involve an assignment of rights or the purchase could be via a contract with pending title deeds and other parameters and conditions governing the sale and transfer of the property. Consequently, the contract of sale should always be drafted by a professional law firm.
As an international law firm regularly dealing with multiple and complicated real estate transactions, we have – unfortunately and on many occasions –come across cases where the importance of correct due diligence procedures and the execution of a correct and clear agreement, so as to cover all possible eventualities before, during and after the transfer of the immovable property, were ignored. This has led to major and unpleasant consequences that could only be resolved by the court. After the signing of the sales contract, another equally important stage is the the execution of the purchase and transfer at the Land Registry. Naturally, all the necessary tax certificates and other documentation must be properly prepared, checked and verified in order to avoid complications at the time of the transfer execution.
It is worth noting that the land registry procedures can be very lengthy and involve significant paperwork. However, an experienced team of lawyers can perform the procedures via power of attorney, thus making the client’s life easier and saving time. In most cases, this procedure means that the purchaser does not even need to attend the land registry.
In summary, by appointing an experienced law firm, individuals and corporations can avoid any unpleasant circumstances that may arise before, during and after the transaction. The law firm will safeguard the investment by carrying out the correct due diligence procedures, preventing any vague and unclear terms from being included in the contract, assisting the financing process through consultation, negotiating the terms of sale on the behalf of the parties, as well as by providing advice with regard to property taxes an any other applicable taxes.