Real Estate Law in California
Real estate law in Berkeley regulates almost everything involved in the sale and use of land.
The law controlling real estate in Berkeley can get pretty complicated, especially when things such as mortgages, disputes about construction defects, and conflicts over title are involved.
Thus, if you're planning on engaging in any kind of real estate transaction, it's critical that you learn at least the basics of real estate law in Berkeley.
Knowing the law can serve you in a variety of ways: it can put you in a better negotiating position, it can help you spot unlawful terms in lease agreements, and confirm that you know your rights if a conflict arises, among other things.
Common Real Estate Law Issues in Berkeley
Financing: Most individuals are unable to make major real estate purchases in Berkeley 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 authorized, and the property purchased, the lender holds a security interest in the property until the loan is paid off, with interest.
Zoning: Zoning regulations control 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 permit industrial use. These rules are meant to keep property values up, and promote harmony among neighbors by preventing conflicts.
Duty to Disclose: When buying a home in Berkeley, you are safeguarded by the law. The seller has a legal obligation to disclose to the buyer any defects of which the seller is aware, which the buyer couldn't detect through a superficial inspection. If you are selling a home, it's probably best to disclose every defect you know about, to guarantee that you aren't faced with a lawsuit from the buyer sometime in the future.
Implied Warranties: In Berkeley, every residential rental agreement carries with it a warranty of habitability, in which the landlord implicitly promises that the unit is fit for human habitation. This applies whether or not such a warranty is mentioned in the lease agreement, and it still applies even if the landlord tries to disclaim any such warranty. There are many circumstances that might make an unit uninhabitable. A few examples are a lack of electricity, no running water, or no heating.
Can a Berkeley Real Estate Lawyer Help?
These issues, along with many others, can sometimes be fairly confusing. Therefore, you should never hesitate to consult with a Berkeley real estate attorney if you have any questions.