South Carolina is a state that requires a real estate attorney to be present at the closing of a home sale. There are several steps to any real estate transaction, and under state law, legal supervision is required at every step.
Step 1: The Contract
If you are the buyer, a real estate attorney will serve as a liaison between you and the lending institution, obtaining all necessary forms and documents and ensuring they are in order. They will also order a title record and keep track of inspection records.
If you are the seller, your attorney’s job is to get financial information about the property, including unpaid mortgages, insurance, and past inspection records.
Step 2: The Title
A real estate lawyer’s main job here is to research the property’s history of ownership for the past six decades by examining the title. The purpose is to ensure that all financial claims on the property have been paid as well as whether or not there are easements or defects.
Step 3: Title Insurance
Once the title has been cleared, the real estate lawyer will certify it with authorities by applying for title insurance. This means that the lender can legally use the property for collateral.
Step 4: Document Preparation
It will be the real estate lawyer’s responsibility to ensure the closing goes smoothly and all documents are ready to sign.
Step 5: Closing
Buyer and seller meet at the attorney’s office. At this meeting, the lawyer explains all forms that would be signed as well as the terms of the loan.
Once these steps are accomplished, the real estate attorney oversees the disbursement of funds and files records with the county. Whether you are buying or selling, be sure to contact a real estate law firm Charleston SC early in the homebuying process.