Category Archives: Real Estate

What is Estate Planning and Why Do You Need It?

Estate planning is the process by which you anticipate your future needs and those of your family, as well as the documents you direct your attorney to draft for you that will provide for those needs. Estate planning is likewise the way you protect your assets during your lifetime and at and after your death so you can avoid probate and minimize the income, gift and inheritance taxes your estate will need to pay.

Your Estate

Your estate consists of everything you own at your death, including the following:

  • Checking and savings account balances
  • Stocks, bonds and other securities
  • Life insurance policy proceeds
  • Real estate
  • Personal property, such as vehicles, jewelry, antiques, etc.

Minimum Estate Plan

Whatever your age, marital status or amount of wealth, if you live anywhere in the Louisville area, you should contact an experienced estate planning attorney Louisville KY to draft at least a Last Will and Testament and a medical power of attorney for you. Why? Because if you die without a will, the intestacy laws of Kentucky will determine who inherits your assets.

As for a medical power of attorney, this document becomes crucial if you suffer a debilitating injury or illness that makes it impossible for you to communicate your wishes regarding the types of medical care you want and don’t want. Your medical power of attorney solves that problem because you not only list those things in it in as much detail as you wish, but you also designate someone as your attorney-in-fact to follow those directions, plus make any other medical decisions for you in the event you cannot make them yourself.

Additional Estate Planning Documents

Many people also include one or more of the following additional documents in their estate plan:

  • Revocable living trust(s)
  • Irrevocable trust
  • Special needs trust for a special needs child
  • Financial power of attorney

All in all, wise estate planning will give you the peace of mind of knowing that you have provided for yourself and your family no matter what happens in the future.

What You Need To Know About Real Estate Lawyers

Chances are that if you are involved in a complex real estate deal, you will be advised to see the advice of an attorney in that area of practice. Real estate lawyers can help you navigate short sales and foreclosures and may be required for any property transaction in some states.

What Does Real Estate Law Cover?

Real estate legal services Shelby Township MI firms cover areas such as the purchase and sale of land with structures on it. Many firms will also cover areas like estate planning and administration as well as business law, so you can have one firm for multiple needs. Real estate law covers deeds, estate planning, zoning as well as property taxes, and titles. So your attorney will be concerned with the details involved in the sale as well as property use and government laws and regulations surrounding the property.

What Are the Qualifications for a Real Estate Attorney?

You can be confident that a certified attorney for real estate law has a law degree, which is three years of study after a bachelor’s, and has passed the state bar exam to practice. This means that he or she has studied relevant case law. Qualifications do not equal experience, however, so you will want to look at how long the firm has been in business as well as how many years your attorney has handled this type of law before retaining a lawyer. You can find this information on the firm’s website and even read third-party reviews and testimonials to find the right attorney for your real estate needs.

Some states require the presence of a real estate lawyer for property transactions and some complex real estate deals are eased by an attorney helping with the process. To find the right one, you need to know what is covered by real estate law, what the qualifications are for an attorney and how much experience different firms and lawyers have.

Purchasing Your First Home

If you think you are ready to purchase a home for the first time, it can be very exciting. If you are the kind of person who likes to do things yourself, you may be tempted to find a home that is being sold by the owner rather than through a real estate agency. Here are some things to think about when buying a home.

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Do You Need an Agent?

When you go house hunting, there are lots of reasons people work with a real estate agent. Even though you have to pay the agent a commission, there are certain benefits that may outweigh the costs. If you give a detailed list of what you are looking for to the agent, he or she can help to narrow down the available homes that fit your criteria.

It can be challenging to simply drive around town looking for homes that are for sale and hoping to find one that meets your needs. An agent usually has access to home listings in your area and can quickly pull up the specifics on each location, including the listing price. Working with a local agent, especially if you are from outside the area, can also give you solid intel on things like schools and shopping.

Do You Need an Attorney

While only a few states require an attorney for real estate transactions, hiring a real estate lawyer Ashburn VA can save you grief in the long run. Your lawyer can help you as you work through the lengthy documents before you sign them and can help if you end up with a dispute. The attorney can make sure that the contract meets requirements in your state. He or she can also help you know what to do if the title search comes up with a lien or other problem.

Purchasing a home is likely to be stressful, but much of the anxiety can be relieved if you work with professionals. Working with an agent and an attorney can help you get what you want and know what you’re getting.