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Tampa Real Estate Law Blog

Most real estate closings can't occur without funding day

Unless a Florida resident is fortunate enough to pay cash for a home, it will be necessary to work with a mortgage lender. When a mortgage loan is part of the transaction, there may be additional steps for prospective homeowners to take before real estate closings can occur. One of those steps is funding day.

In many cases, funding day corresponds to the day of closing, which is the day that ownership of the property in question transfers from the seller to the buyer. However, it may occur a day or two prior to that date, depending on the circumstances. The important thing is that it takes place, but that will not happen until all of the lender's requirements are met.

Condo owner says he lost his home over battle with HOA

Everyone has to follow rules whether it is at work, on the road or at home. Homeowners' associations here in Florida and elsewhere implement and enforce rules for the communities that have them. The problem is that some HOA members may not agree with the rules, and it could have unintended consequences for the homeowner, even if he or she is right.

For instance, all a condominium owner in southern Florida wanted to do was show appreciation to the men and women who fight for this country by displaying a small American flag in a flowerpot. He received a violation notice from his HOA telling him to remove the flag. This started a battle that ultimately spilled into federal court.

Determining the percentage of CAMs a commercial tenant pays

They say that location is the primary concern for a business when searching for the right rental space. That may be true, but for many Tampa business owners, marrying the right location to the right price may be a challenge. This is often because a commercial tenant has more to worry about than just the base rent. Among other add-ons, the cost of common area maintenance charges also needs to be taken into consideration.

A tenant ordinarily pays a portion of the CAMs. The question is what that portion is. For instance, in a building with 100,000 square feet of space, a tenant may rent 4,000 square feet. Since that equals 4 percent of the building, the tenant should pay 4 percent of the CAMs. Logically, that makes sense, but it may not be the formula used by the property owner.

Tips for winning condo association or HOA disputes

If you count yourself among the millions of Americans who currently must abide by the guidelines dictated in a condo association or homeowner’s association agreement, you may have, at some point, found yourself involved in some type of dispute. Maybe your association believes your home needs a fresh coat of paint, or maybe you are receiving letters from your association asking you to take better care of your lawn, among other examples.

Condo and HOA disputes are quite common, but they can also prove frustrating in that they demand your time and can potentially cause discord between you and your neighbors. If you decide to fight your condo or HOA on a particular issue, there are certain steps you can take that may increase your odds of a favorable outcome. More specifically, before you go to bat against your condo or HOA, be sure to:

Information about the eviction process here in Florida

Whether a tenant or a landlord, each party should have a basic understanding of Florida law when it comes to issues that can arise between the parties. If the situation gets bad enough, a landlord may begin the eviction process. Below is a summary of what landlords must consider before doing so.

First, a landlord needs to be sure that the tenant does not have a legitimate reason to violate the lease agreement. For example, if a property owner fails to make repairs necessary to keep the property habitable and safe or fails to keep the common areas safe, a tenant may have reason to break a lease. If a landlord believes that he or she has fulfilled those duties, then the landlord may initiate eviction proceedings.

Real estate law requires due diligence before closing a sale

Many Florida house hunters consider finding the perfect property as the hardest part of the process. Once they've found it, they begin the due diligence process. This process helps ensure that any real estate law issues are identified and resolved prior to closing the transaction.

Florida homebuyers want to make sure they are getting what they pay for when buying a property. The only way to make sure that happens is by doing the necessary research, or due diligence. Any number of things can go wrong with a real estate transaction, and it would be better to know before signing on the dotted line than after. This means taking a variety of steps to be sure that what a buyer sees is actually what a buyer gets.

What rights do tenants have here in Florida?

Not everyone buys property. Many people here in Florida decide to rent for a variety of reasons. Even though someone else may own the property in which they live, tenants still have rights when it comes to the property they decide to lease.

Florida landlords are required to provide tenants with a safe, livable space. The property must have working plumbing, be structurally sound and have hot water and heat. Landlords are also required to provide certain reasonable security measures such as locking doors and windows. If any repairs are needed to the property, landlords are responsible for those as well.

Could your real estate closing benefit from an attorney's help?

Most of Florida's title companies do their jobs well, but you may need more assistance than they can provide. Numerous legal issues and questions could come up during the process that a title agent cannot answer. Involving an attorney in a real estate closing may provide the additional help needed in order to successfully conclude a transaction.

Even before you reach closing, you will be negotiating and signing a purchase and sale contract. You may want to ensure that your rights are protected and that your contract contains all of the legal protections you need. Once you reach the due diligence phase, a title search could reveal problems with you obtaining clear title to the property. Resolving those issues may require litigation and/or legal documentation to fix.

Can I break my commercial lease?

Sometimes, a commercial lease becomes impractical. Whether your business is hitting hard times or you are unhappy with your landlord, you may want to just pack up your office and leave. However, you should not leave before you understand the possible repercussions.

It may be difficult to terminate your commercial lease prematurely without facing any financial liability. Here is a look at some of the consequences you may face for breaking your lease and when you may actually be able to stop renting without any ramifications.

The basics of condominium and homeowners associations

When looking for a place to buy here in Tampa, a community with "extras" may be just what some people want. In order to get those amenities such as pools, tennis courts and other common areas, those communities more than likely come with condominium and homeowners associations, depending on what type of housing an individual wishes to purchase. Most people have heard of HOAs or condo associations, but many people don't understand how they work.

HOAs and condo associations do a lot of good for the community. They keep up the common areas, make repairs and maintain the structures in the common areas such as the pool, and association boards do what they can to keep everyone's property values steady or rising. On the other hand, boards can only do these things through the collection of monthly fees and special assessments.

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