Residential Real Estate

Westchester Residential Real Estate Lawyer

For many people, buying a home is the biggest investment they will ever make. A residential real estate lawyer guides you through the process, from an accepted offer to the day the keys are transferred.
Each party—seller and buyer—needs an attorney. Usually, the attorney becomes involved when the seller accepts a buyer’s offer, but sometimes an attorney can be helpful in advance, especially for the seller. The property may have issues that involve negotiations about the accepted offer. Often, the parties’ brokers deal with that subject, but the imput of a Westchester residential real estate lawyer may be helpful, too.

The seller’s attorney performs the following tasks:

  • Prepares the contract of sale to send to the buyer’s attorney.
  • Reviews all legal documents relating to the property, including the current deed, any mortgage or title papers, and any documents relating to legal circumstances, such as an estate sale or short sale).
  • Holds the down payment for purchase of the property (often, 10% of the selling price) in his or her attorney escrow account until the closing date.
  • Obtains a payoff letter from the seller’s mortgage bank, if any, stating the total amount of mortgage due at the closing.
  • Prepares the closing adjustments (including taxes due or prepaid by the seller), reading of the water bill at or near closing, and a reading of fuel in the tank (if oil is the fuel) at or near closing.

The buyer’s attorney performs the following tasks:

  • Guides the buyer to a qualified engineer or inspector, so that the property may be inspected thoroughly before the buyer signs the contract of sale.
  • Reviews and guides the buyer in the process of signing the contract of sale.
  • Obtains a complete, updated title search from the title company to determine if there are any liens, defects of title, or any other impediments to closing.
  • Reviews the closing adjustments with the seller’s attorney.
  • Guides buyers to obtain prerequisites for closing, including homeowners’ insurance.


Contact us at (914) 631-2657 for an experienced Westchester County residential real estate lawyer to help you buy or sell your home.

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