Real Estate Law in North Carolina
Asheville's real estate industry is governed by a huge body of laws. This is because almost any real estate transaction invokes laws concerning civil rights, consumer protection, land use, and contracts.
Real estate law in Asheville can be fairly complex, especially when it comes to things like mortgages and the resolution of disputes over construction defects.
Accordingly, it's a good idea to learn some of the basics of Asheville'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 Asheville
Financing: Most individuals, families, and small businesses in Asheville cannot afford to buy a large piece of real estate with the money they have on hand. However, they often can afford to pay for it over a long period of time, in installments, with interest. Therefore, most real estate is purchased using a mortgage - a loan for a specific purchase, using the item purchased as collateral.
Zoning: Zoning laws dictate what types of buildings can go on given pieces of property. These laws are generally designed to ensure that residential areas are as clean and as quiet as possible, thereby preserving property values. They accomplish this by ensuring that other uses that might be inappropriate in a residential area, such as heavy industry, are in different parts of town. This also ensures that industries will be able to go about their business without constant complaints from their neighbors.
Duty to Disclose: sellers of real estate, especially 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 Asheville, 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 Asheville Real Estate Lawyer Help?
These issues, along with many others, can sometimes be fairly complicated. Therefore, you should never hesitate to consult with a Asheville real estate attorney if you have any questions.