Real Estate Law in Rhode Island
Charlestown's real estate industry is controlled by a huge body of laws. This is because almost any real estate transaction invokes laws regarding civil rights, consumer protection, land use, and contracts.
The law controlling real estate in Charlestown 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 Charlestown's real estate laws.
If you have even a little bit of basic familiarity 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 Charlestown
Financing: Most persons, families, and small businesses in Charlestown cannot afford to buy a large piece of real estate with the money they have on hand. However, they generally can afford to pay for it over a long period of time, in installments, with interest. Consequently, 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 usually 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, 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 prevalent 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: Every lease of a residential unit in Charlestown carries with it an implicit promise by the owner that the unit will meet some basic minimum requirements for human habitability. There are many factors that go into deciding if an unit is "habitable," but there are a few essentials, and they include running water, heat, electricity, and adequate shelter from the elements.
Can a Charlestown Real Estate Lawyer Help?
The issues briefly discussed above, as well as many others, can be very confusing. Accordingly, if you are engaged in any real estate transaction, it's never a bad idea to first consult with an experienced Charlestown real estate attorney.