Understanding real estate documents before signing them

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"Real estate is not only the business of buying and selling properties, but it also involves the signing of legal and binding documents. All parties directly involved need to be fully aware of the contracts they are signing and exactly what those contracts entail," says Mike Greeff, CEO of Greeff Christie's International Real Estate.
Whether you are a buyer or seller and you are in the midst of the property transaction process it is quite likely that you will have to go through the document signing process.

This requires assiduous attention to detail when reading and understanding the document.

During this time it is also extremely important that first and foremost, you need to would need to enlist the service of a qualified and experienced agent who will assist you during the sale or purchase of property and who will be able to explain these documents to you, at the behest of the agent, should he or she not be able to, they should put you in touch with an attorney who will.

Keep the following three things in mind before crossing all the t's and dotting all the i's. 

1. Unpacking technical jargon in the industry
Understanding technical jargon need not be daunting. Once you sit down with your agent, he or she will take you through the documents and explain to you what each and every term, clause or addendum means. Should you lose sight of what he or she is saying, ask your agent to explain these terms to you again or until you are completely comfortable with what they mean. 
In most cases, terms such as OTP (Offer to purchase) and CGT (Capital Gains Tax) are used as abbreviations and any confusion can be easily cleared up, for more on demystifying real estate terms, click here.

If there are any things you are unsure about, speak to your agent immediately about this so that he or she is aware of the uncertainties you may have. Your agent will do their best to not only allay your fears but also to clarify things you are finding difficult to understand. 

2. Understanding all clauses
Understanding clauses can be just as tricky, in some cases, documentation will refer to a clause by its technical name or by an alphanumeric pairing e.g. Clause 2b or 5d and move on to the rest of the information. It is therefore vital that you are informed of what each clause entails and just exactly how you are affected by them. 
Clauses pertain to anything from the contents of the house, to the financial aspects of the sale and even the suspensive conditions. Be sure to read through all clauses thoroughly and ask as many questions as you need to. 
3. Receiving legal input where possible
During the sale of a property, legal input is always important. Signing any documents during a property sale is a legal and binding commitment and as such it would be the wise decision on your part to seek legal counsel before putting pen to paper at any point in the transaction.
It is important to note that once these documents have been signed, you are liable for money due or property handover by a predetermined date.
Above all else, remember to maintain open lines of communication at all times with your appointed real estate agent throughout the process.  It is the agent's job to make you feel comfortable and dispel any concerns that you may have.

Author: Greeff

Submitted 03 Jun 19 / Views 875