Real Estate Law in Washington
The real estate industry in Island County is controlled by a wide variety of laws, and these laws can affect the process and outcome of practically any transaction or deal involving the sale, lease, or use of land.
Real estate law in Island County can be fairly complicated, especially when it comes to things like mortgages and the resolution of disputes over construction defects.
Therefore, it's a good idea to learn some of the basics of Island County's real estate laws.
Having at least some knowledge of real estate law will be to your advantage in practically any real estate transaction. Knowing the law can give you a bargaining advantage and prevent you from being saddled with obligations that you don't have to assume.
Common Real Estate Law Issues in Island County
Financing: Most persons, families, and small businesses in Island County cannot afford to buy a large piece of real estate with the money they have on hand. However, they typically can afford to pay for it over a long period of time, in installments, with interest. Thus, most real estate is purchased using a mortgage - a loan for a specific purchase, using the item purchased as collateral.
Zoning: Zoning regulations govern what types of structures are allowed on various parcels, based on their location in a municipality. For instance, some areas in a city might be zoned only for residential use. Another area might authorize 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 frequent 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 Island County, 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 Island County Real Estate Lawyer Help?
The issues briefly discussed above, as well as many others, can be very difficult. Accordingly, if you are engaged in any real estate transaction, it's never a bad idea to first consult with an experienced Island County real estate attorney.