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5 Common Residential Real Estate Issues

Howry, Breen & Herman, LLP

Residential real estate litigation is one of the most complex areas of the law because it deals with complex legal concepts, contracts, and more. For anyone who owns a home or will soon enter a real estate transaction, they should be aware of the issues that can arise, sometimes without much warning.

Five of the most common residential real estate issues you should know about are:

  • Contract disputes: A real estate contract should be handled with as much care as you would a business contract. Anywhere there is fine print, there is an opportunity for an involved party to overlook something of critical importance. Working with a real estate law attorney whenever you are presented with a real estate contract is a simple yet effective way of ensuring you understand the full terms and expectations of the contract.
  • Land use issues: Even though you might own a piece of real estate, you do not own the right to use that land however you want. Certain stretches of land are restricted by specific land use laws, which tend to be the strictest in residential neighborhoods.
  • Landlord-tenant disputes: Are you renting your home to tenants, or are you a tenant who is renting a residential piece of property? In either situation, you need to be aware of what the other party expects of you in your professional relationship. Landlord-tenant disputes can get brutal quickly if mishandled. Issues like noise complaints, property damage, and eviction attempts should be managed with the assistance of a real estate lawyer.
  • Title disputes: The title to a piece of residential property will explain how can claim ownership over it. Many homeowners are surprised to find that their home’s title still lists a bank or another financial institution as a party with a claim to it. When trying to sell a home with a muddled title, a dispute is almost guaranteed to follow. There are legal processes you can use to clear your home’s title, though, before you enter a real estate transaction.
  • Condemnation: As surprising as it might be, condemnation – or the taking of private property to use in a public project or to the public’s benefit – happens quite often across the country. The government’s right to condemn is also called eminent domain in many legal contexts. For example, you could receive notification that your residential property is claimed in order for the government to build a school, park, or highway. As the property’s original owner, you should be paid fair compensation based on your home’s value if it is taken through eminent domain.

For questions about residential real estate laws, litigation, and other legal issues in Austin, Texas, call (512) 430-4844 and speak with an attorney from Howry, Breen & Herman, LLP.

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