Real Estate Law in California
Real estate law in Alameda County governs almost everything involved in the sale and use of land.
The law controlling real estate in Alameda County can get pretty complicated, especially when things such as mortgages, disputes about construction defects, and conflicts over title are involved.
Therefore, it's a good idea to learn some of the basics of Alameda County's real estate laws.
If you have even a little bit of basic knowledge of applicable real estate law, your life will probably be a great deal easier. If you have some understanding of the law, your knowledge will likely put you in a better bargaining position.
Common Real Estate Law Issues in Alameda County
Financing: Most individuals are unable to make major real estate purchases in Alameda County with cash, because few people have that kind of money on hand. Thus, to buy real estate, most entities use a mortgage. This is a loan used to buy a piece of property. When the loan is issued, and the property purchased, the lender holds a security interest in the property until the loan is paid off, with interest.
Zoning: Zoning regulations determine what types of structures are allowed on various parcels, based on their location in a municipality. For example, some areas in a city might be zoned only for residential use. Another area might allow industrial use. These rules are meant to keep property values up, and promote harmony among neighbors by preventing conflicts.
Duty to Disclose: sellers of real estate, particularly houses and other residential property, are legally bound to tell the buyer about any defects in the property that the seller knows about, and that the buyer couldn't easily discover on his own (mold or termite problems are common examples). If the seller fails to make such disclosures, he or she could be liable for any harm the defect causes to the buyer, as well as the cost of repairing it. If the seller intentionally conceals or lies about the defect, he or she might also face punitive damages.
Implied Warranties: In Alameda County, every residential lease agreement, whether it's explicitly stated or not, has an "implied warranty of habitability." This is a legally-imposed promise by the landlord that the rented dwelling (whether it's a house or apartment) is fit for habitation by humans. While there are many requirements for a place to be considered habitable, some of the most critical ones are electricity, running water, heating, and protection from the elements.
Can a Alameda County Real Estate Lawyer Help?
These issues, along with many others, can sometimes be fairly perplexing. Therefore, you should never hesitate to consult with a Alameda County real estate attorney if you have any questions.