Mackiewicz & Associates L.L.C.- Attorneys At Law

Home Ownership Information Center

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Frequently Asked Questions about Home Ownership

Q: Do I have to agree to sell my home if a buyer comes forward or if my agent finds one for me?

A: A seller does not have to sell his or her home to anyone until he or she signs a valid purchase agreement. An unsigned purchase agreement is only an offer to buy on specific terms, and in most cases a seller doesn't have to accept an offer. However, if the seller signs a listing agreement and refuses to accept an offer to purchase the home for the asking price, this could be a breach of the listing agreement. In any event, a seller need not sign a purchase agreement immediately, and the seller should talk with an attorney first.

Q: What is the difference between a listing agreement and an agency agreement?

A: A listing agreement is between the seller and a real estate agent. An agency agreement is between a buyer and a real estate agent. Both the buyer's agency agreement and the seller's listing agreement have a significant impact on a party's rights and should be negotiated or reviewed by a lawyer. Many terms can be negotiated, including the amount of the agent's commission, the agreement's duration, the agent's duties, and timing of the commission payment.

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More and more Americans are becoming homeowners. In 2000, the homeownership rate in the United States reached 67.7 percent. Many Americans do not believe purchasing a home is a feasible option. If you are considering a home purchase, contact an experienced residential real estate attorney to discuss available programs that can make it easier for you to purchase a home.

Residential Real Estate Attorneys
Hoboken, New Jersey
Manhattan, New York

What an exciting time for an individual or a family buying or sale a home. If you are buying the transaction represents an enormous financial investment into a place you will call home probably for many years. For the seller it is the realization of that investment and oftentimes a reinvestment into a new home. Make sure all the legal details are accurate and that the transaction is done right and on time. Contact the experienced residential real estate attorneys at Mackiewicz & Associates, L.L.C. in Manhattan, New York, or Hoboken, New Jersey.

If you are planning to buy or sell a home in Manhattan or in the New Jersey area of Hudson County, Essex County, and Bergen County, talk to real estate lawyers who have experience helping buyers and sellers in New Jersey and New York. Call the attorneys at Mackiewicz & Associates, L.L.C. in Hoboken or Manhattan.

Contact Us

Mackiewicz & Associates, L.L.C.
New Jersey and New York Real Estate Lawyers

New Jersey Office
625 Washington Street
Hoboken, New Jersey 07030
(201) 217-1500
(201) 217-4448

New York Office
60 East 42nd Street,
47th Floor
New York, New York 10165
(212) 922-9722
(212) 922-9723

Home Ownership - An Overview

Buying a home is often a consumer's biggest investment. Residential real estate transactions are covered by a complex web of federal and state laws. The requirements established by state law often differ significantly from one state to the next. A residential real estate lawyer can assist a buyer or seller through the complexities of these transactions. If you are considering buying or selling property, call today.


Several different contracts are involved in a typical residential real estate transaction. A listing agreement is the contract between the seller and the listing broker. It sets out listing terms, the seller's preferred sales price, and the commission rate. Most of these conditions are negotiable, including the commission. The listing agreement is critical to the seller, and he or she should review it carefully and have it reviewed by a lawyer. Once a broker produces a willing and able buyer and all conditions are met, the seller owes the broker his or her full commission, even if the seller decides not to sell.

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Buying a Home

Before making an offer on a house, a homebuyer should take his or her entire situation into account. The buyer must consider whether he or she is ready to buy a home, how much he or she can afford, and what terms to offer, among many other things. Negotiating and reviewing the documents for a home purchase can be daunting. An attorney with experience in residential real estate transactions can advise a buyer about his or her rights and negotiate the terms of the contracts involved in purchasing real estate.

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Selling a Home

Selling a home is exciting, but it takes some work. A seller will need to make many decisions, including whether to make delayed repairs and whether to use a professional real estate broker. The process can be complicated, with many potential pitfalls. An experienced residential real estate attorney can offer essential advice and guidance throughout the process.

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Boundary Disputes

The property description in a deed shows where the boundaries between properties lie. Boundary disputes, which are disagreements regarding who owns a piece of property, still occur on a regular basis despite modern surveying techniques. These disputes are especially common when title and boundary lines were established many years ago. Boundary disputes include fences built "over the line," improvements that are not compatible with the neighbor's use or enjoyment of his or her property, roads or driveways that cross over a neighbor's property, or nuisances on property. An experienced real estate attorney can help find a solution for a boundary dispute.

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Home Improvements

Every year, thousands of homeowners take on home improvement projects, either on their own or with the help of a contractor. Home improvement fulfills many needs, from increasing a home's value to improving a homeowner's quality of life. A home improvement project can be a good experience, but there are many challenges and legal issues. An attorney who understands home improvement law can help you have a positive experience so you can enjoy the fruits of your labor.

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Home Ownership Information Center


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Mackiewicz & Associates
New Jersey Location 625 Washington Street
Hoboken, New Jersey 07030

T (201) 217-1500
F (201) 217-4448
Email Us

Mackiewicz & Associates
New York Location 60 East 42nd Street,
47th Floor
New York, New York 10165

T (212) 922-9722
F (212) 922-9723
Email Us

The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation.

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