As A Seller Of Real Estate, What Documents And Assistance Can My Attorney Provide To Me?
In Westchester County and the greater New York City area, there are several standard documents that accompany any real estate transaction. In most cases, it falls upon a Seller’s attorney to draft and prepare these documents for the closing date. This discussion does not include the loan documents, such as the Note and Mortgage, which are prepared by the lender and the lender’s attorney – also referred to as a bank attorney or settlement agent.
First is the property’s Deed of Sale. There are several types of Deeds but the most usual form in New York is referred to as a Bargain and Sale Deed. The Seller signs the Deed in front of a notary, usually at the closing or right before, and the Deed is filed with the County Clerk or the City Registrar’s office in the land records immediately after the closing. Once the Deed is recorded with the Clerk, the ownership of the Purchaser is official and part of the public record.
The Deed is accompanied by at least two additional transfer documents to be signed at the closing in New York State. The TP-584 (Combined Real Estate Transfer Tax Return, Credit Line Mortgage Certificate, and Certification of Exemption from the Payment of Estimated Personal Income Tax) is usually drafted and checked by the Seller’s attorney or the title company and both the Purchaser and the Seller sign this document at the closing. The TP-584 is required by the County Clerk to file the Deed in the land records. This documents main function is to outline the New York State Transfer Tax that needs to be paid when the Deed is recorded. For most locations in New York State, the Seller’s transfer tax is 0.4% of the purchase price (or .004 multiplied by the Purchase Price). Certain cities such as New York City, Yonkers, and Mount Vernon charge an additional transfer tax to the Seller. A companion doc called the RP-5217 (Real Property Transfer Report) is also drafted by the Seller’s attorney or title company and these documents must be submitted with the Deed to the Clerk along with the Deed of Sale. This document instructs the government where to send property tax bills post-closing. If the Seller is a non-resident of NY State and is selling a New York property, the Seller may also need to file an IT-2663, which is a Nonresident Real Property Estimated Income Tax Payment Form. These documents are often referred to collectively as transfer documents.
In New York City, the documents must be created electronically on ACRIS (Automated City Register Information System), and the transfer documents’ formats and titles vary from the documents in other locations. In Westchester County, these transfer documents must be created utilizing PREP (the Property Records Electronic Portal). An experienced and knowledgeable real estate attorney is a valuable resource to make sure your deed and transfer documents are filled out correctly and recorded successfully.
What Can My Attorney Do To Arrange A Payoff Of The Mortgage Of The Property We Are Selling?
If you are still paying a mortgage on the property for sale, you will need to obtain a payoff statement so it can be paid at the closing. Customarily, 3-4 business days are added to the closing date to determine the payoff date as the mortgage is often paid-off via bank check that the title company picks up and overnights to the lender. It is usually straightforward and easy for you to obtain a payoff statement. Simply call the customer service number for your lender or mortgage servicer and most lenders can get you a payoff statement within hours.
Can A Seller Accept A Higher Offer From Someone Else After Accepting My Offer?
A Seller can accept a higher offer from someone else after verbally accepting an offer. Until you have a fully executed Contract of Sale signed by both the Buyer and the Seller, there is not a legally binding contract. Therefore, the Seller is free to accept a higher offer, even if they have already accepted your initial offer verbally or through a real estate agent. It is critical to get into a written contract to lock the parties into the deal. Once both the Purchaser and the Seller sign the Contract of Sale and the fully executed Contract is delivered to the Buyer’s attorney, both parties are contractually bound by the terms.
For more information on Closing Documents Prepared By An Attorney, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (800) 619-3570 today.
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