Real Estate Law in Ohio
Cuyahoga County'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.
The huge volume of laws governing real estate in Cuyahoga County might seem overwhelming to the uninitiated. Indeed, they can get very complicated, especially when issues about title defects or construction disputes are involved.
Accordingly, it's a smart idea to obtain at least a very basic knowledge of how real estate law in Cuyahoga County works.
Knowing the law can serve you in a number of ways: it can put you in a better negotiating position, it can help you spot unlawful terms in lease agreements, and ensure that you know your rights if a dispute arises, among other things.
Common Real Estate Law Issues in Cuyahoga County
Financing: Most people are unable to make major real estate purchases in Cuyahoga County with cash, because few people have that kind of money on hand. Therefore, 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, 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 Cuyahoga 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 necessary ones are electricity, running water, heating, and protection from the elements.
Can a Cuyahoga County Real Estate Lawyer Help?
These issues, along with many others, can sometimes be fairly complicated. Therefore, you should never hesitate to consult with a Cuyahoga County real estate attorney if you have any questions.