Commercial Real Estate Law in West Virginia
In Charleston, West Virginia, commercial real estate is any parcel of land, or any building, which is used for business purposes, as opposed to residential, agricultural, or industrial use.
The laws governing real estate in Charleston, West Virginia apply differently when dealing with commercial, as opposed to residential, real estate.
Many of the protections that buyers and renters of residential real estate enjoy rarely apply to renters of commercial real estate.
For example, commercial real estate normally isn't covered by rent control laws, nor does it carry with it an implied warranty of habitability (because people typically won't be living in it). Furthermore, it also doesn't come with a covenant of quiet enjoyment. However, some of the most basic legal protections (such as laws against fraud, and concealment of defects) apply in both the commercial and residential context.
Common Commercial Real Estate Law Issues in Charleston, West Virginia
Financing: Most small business owners in Charleston, West Virginia don't have the money to buy real estate with the cash on hand. However, there is a solution to this problem, allowing people without massive sums of money (but with a steady income) to buy real estate: the mortgage. A mortgage is a loan used to buy real estate, and the real estate being purchased is used as collateral for the loan.
Concealment of Defects: if the seller of commercial property acts to conceal a significant defect in the property, and then sells the property, he will be accountable for any harm this defect cause, as well as the reduced value of the property, or the cost of repair.
Buyer's Duty to Inspect: typically, buyers of commercial real estate are expected to inspect the property before buying it. A failure to do so might prevent the buyer from prevailing in a lawsuit if he is hurt by physical defects that an inspection would have revealed, and that the seller didn't know about.
Encumbrances: These are defects to title, rather than physical defects. They are legal issues which might make it difficult or impossible for a landowner to make full use of their land. In Charleston, West Virginia, these might include easements. An easement is a right to use property held by a party other than the owner. This use is often very particular in scope, such as allowing the holder of the easement to cross the property to access a public road, or something similar. Such rights usually have to be recognized and honored by new owners, so if they buy property not knowing about them, they might be seriously inconvenienced.
Can a Charleston, West Virginia Attorney Help?
These issues can be very complicated, and most people consider such financially-weighty decisions to be very important. If you are one of those people, it's a smart move to contact a Charleston, West Virginia real estate attorney if you are facing any of the issues discussed above.