Foreign Investment in Florida Real Estate: What You Need to Know

By: Romy B. Jurado, Esq., Partner at Jurado & Farshchian, PL., and a Member of The Fund

The Sunshine State has long been home to a large number of immigrants. Immigrants altogether make up more than a quarter of Florida’s labor force, and one in five residents in the state was born abroad. Additionally, one in eight residents is a native-born U.S. citizen with at least one immigrant parent. It is no surprise that Florida is one of the favorite destinations for foreigners who want to invest in real estate. As a Realtor® in Florida, it is crucial to understand foreign investment in Florida real estate and how to do it properly.

My Favorite Uncle Retired to Florida and Here’s How I Helped

By: Michael Rothman, Esq.

I heard from my favorite uncle last week. He’s found a property in Deerfield Beach, Florida, just up the road from where I am, and is ready to submit an offer to purchase.

PROBATE & HOMESTEAD: How Not to Let Them Derail Your Deal

By: Tony Lavargna, Esq., Lavargna Law, PLLC, Stuart, and a Member of The Fund

Probate can be a deadly word for real estate closings, but it doesn’t have to be. There are some initial aspects of Probate that we can help navigate for our clients to make sure that a real estate deal stays on course.

FR/BAR Contracts and Corona: How to Survive your COVID-Closing

By: Jared Gaylord, Esq., of Marc. R. Gaylord, P.A., Hobe Sound, FL and a Member of The Fund

Unfortunately, COVID-19 is here to stay. The global pandemic has touched every aspect of American life. Real estate closings have not been spared. It is imperative to understand how the coronavirus can impact a real estate transaction to adequately protect yourself and your clients.

How Can Digital Real Estate Closings Help Your Business Grow?

By: Jordan Lulich, Esquire at Lulich Attorneys & Consultants and Member of The Fund

Don’t judge a book by its cover. While for many, digital real estate closings seem like a daunting service to offer, I’m here to tell you that it’s quite simpler than you think. 

Let’s face it: In-person real estate closings are enjoyable. However, what if I told you that a digital real estate closing can be as enjoyable, and that they cater to people of all ages. 

Does Paragraph 5(a)of the FR/Bar Contract Always Protect Your Buyer if Lender Is Not Ready to Close?

By: Michael G. Salmon, Managing Attorney at SalmonLaw PLLC and Member of The Fund

Liquidated damages ensure that earnest money deposits are central elements of real estate transactions utilizing the FAR/Bar residential sales contracts – the standard or “as is” contract (the “FAR/Bar Contracts”).

What Happens to the Funds in Escrow if Your Deal Falls Through?

By: Sebastian Jaramillo, Partner at Wolfe Pincavage LLP and Member of The Fund

Even though we are in the business of getting transactions closed and funded; on occasion, the deal falls through and we are left with the question of how to deal with the funds held in escrow. 

Say Hello to RON (and Goodbye to Mailaway Closings)

By Michael Rothman, Esq., The Fund’s Legal Education Manager

Every real estate professional involved in a transaction with an out-of-town seller can relate to the dread of opening a FedEx envelope supposedly containing the fully executed deed, only to find that the seller signed in the wrong place, there are no witnesses, and the notary’s commission expired last month.

Handling Escrow Disputes: Don’t Be a Cliché

By: Shannon L. Widman, Esq. of Porath & Associates, P.A.

No one wants to see a good deal go bad. As a Realtor® your business plan survives on closed deals, not cancelled deals. Nonetheless, the more deals you do, the more likely you will, at some point, encounter the dreaded escrow dispute.

Seller Financing: Still an Option?

By John St. Lawrence, Esq, Legal Education Attorney, The Fund

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (CFPB) Loan Originator Compensation Rule went into full effect in 2014 bringing a subset of small mortgage lenders under a previously unknown level of federal regulation.  As a result some types of private mortgage financing are now too risky or cumbersome for many to contemplate.  This is unfortunate since seller and private financing are very popular and legitimate financing sources for intra-family loans, underserved communities and rural or non-conforming properties.

What Real Estate Agents Should Know about Sellers’ Disclosures

By: Marshall C. Deason, Jr., Board Certified Real Estate Lawyer, Older Lundy & Alvarez, Tampa, FL

In 1998, the Florida Supreme Court decided the case of Johnson v. Davis, which created a new duty for sellers of residential real estate.  In this case, the Court ruled that sellers must disclose any material defects in the property which are known to the seller and which are not open and obvious.  In the line of cases which followed over the next several years, courts ruled that the duty to disclose applies to real estate brokers and agents and that making a sale “AS IS” does not eliminate or limit the duty to disclose.  In addition, a buyer cannot waive the right to receive disclosure.

The opinions of any particular author are not necessarily the opinions of Attorneys' Real Estate Councils of Florida, Inc., any of the local Real Estate Councils or Attorneys’ Title Fund Services, LLC.