Sharpen Your Vision with a Real Estate Lawyer

For many people and corporations looking to invest in real estate, hiring a real estate lawyer is as obvious as bringing a passport with you on your travels abroad. However, if you are new to property investment, you may only have a vague idea of the importance of using a lawyer. If so, you have come to the right place.

Entering the property market can be a daunting idea, which is perfectly rational considering the number of things that can go wrong in investing in property. The nature of the property market is constantly changing due to political and economic shifts, requiring those interested in buying or selling real estate to keep a sharp eye on these changes.

What are real estate lawyers?

They are professionals who dedicate their careers to studying all aspects of real estate law, as well as applying their legal skills to settle disputes and transactions. These are skills that the vast majority of people interested in real estate won’t have. Having to understand all of the real estate jargon is only one small part of the equation. Knowing whether or not your investment is a smart one can be difficult since there may be hidden pitfalls in the transaction that only a real estate lawyer is able to identify.

Reputation is Everything

If you are a big corporation, then it is even more fundamental that you have a reputable and competent legal team with you every step of the way, since a vast amount of money will be at stake. A big player in this game is Goodwin, whose global presence stretches from the USA and across the pond into Europe. An established and experienced real estate lawyer will be able to:

  • Make sure that all transactions stay on the right side of the law.
  • Ensure that you are protected from any sort of exploitation. Your lawyer will identify any hidden clauses or fees in the contract.
  • Include an assured exit strategy should you have any second thoughts.
  • Provide deep insight into the real estate market that can drastically improve the decision making of your investments.
  • Be able to understand and translate important real estate terminology.
  • Help with last minute disagreements in the final stage of the negotiating process. Not having a real estate lawyer by your side may corner you into a position where you are pressured into making hasty decisions.

Top Tips When Relocating to a New City or Country

Moving is always a stressful process. Add a new city or country to the mix and it can be utterly overwhelming. Not only do you have to deal with all the packing and deciding which belongings you will keep, there might be language barriers, cultural differences, different council rules, visa applications and international travel involved. I am here to tell you it doesn’t have to be very scary – read my top tips to make preparing to relocate to anywhere a bit easier.

Finding the Right Estate Agent

Even if you are moving within the UK, it can be so tricky to know which estate agents and companies you should actually trust and which ones you should avoid at all costs. A good start is always Google as it will help you determine which companies are out there. Don’t just search for estate agents but also research residential developments to ensure you don’t miss any opportunities. For example, the Lodha Group is a reputable property developer with various locations, including Lincoln Square in London. Once you have a list of companies, make sure to check reviews on channels like Facebook or Google. When people have had excellent or disastrous experiences, they have likely shared them somewhere. These reviews will provide a great start to narrowing down your list of agencies and companies. Alternatively, join a local Facebook group and ask for feedback on local estate agents.

Language Barriers

Moving to a completely new country is daunting; there is no other way to spin this. But it will always be a fantastic adventure. If you have to deal with language barriers, you can prepare yourself by following a language course ahead of the big move. Sounds simple, but plenty of people will find that making the time for this is actually a little harder than initially anticipated. Research local language courses if you do better with regular sessions and other like-minded students. Obviously, in this day and age, you will also be able to find an app that will help you pick up new vocabulary and grammar. Take your pick from apps like Duolingo, Babbel, TripLingo and many more. You will be spoiled with choices. Depending on your budget, you can try free or cheaper apps or jump straight in and pay a bit more for the Rosetta Stone app. You will have to schedule your own time though.

Visa Applications, Cultural Differences & Council Rules

Figuring out where to look when you want straight-forward information on visas, culture or local council rules can be very confusing, especially if you don’t speak the language. A great resource can be university websites if you are locating to a city with a major learning institution. Universities will often compile useful information on life in the city so new students will have less trouble adjusting to this new environment. This information is often not only useful for students but anyone looking to move. The resources will include details on council tax and other charges, estate agents, banks, insurances and other key information. Save yourself some time and browse these resources, which are often readily available on university websites in various languages.

Tips for letting out your home

If you are considering moving out of your home, but wish to let it out there are many factors that you should consider to make an informed decision and ensure that all your legal rights are in place. It could be that you need to move abroad for work and wish to keep your property here in the UK, or you are moving in with a partner. You may have inherited a property and don’t want to sell, instead using it as an investment opportunity. Letting out your home can seem daunting but it is also a great opportunity for raising some revenue as an additional income. Here are our top tips for letting out your home.

Changing your mortgage

You will need to change your mortgage (if you have one) to a buy to let arrangement with your mortgage provider. As a result, your repayments may increase and you may need to complete a new application which would tap into your credit rating. Look up your present agreement and read the small print to assess what, if any, fees you would occur from switching your mortgage policy. View online mortgage advisor for advice on switching to a buy to let mortgage.

Allocate a letting agent

You don’t want to be bombarded with calls from your new tenants of how to work the heating or stating that something has broken at 2 am. Worse still, you wouldn’t want your old neighbours complaining about house parties or rubbish in the stairwell. To alleviate some of the stress of being a landlord, its best to allocate a letting agent who can take over these things and keep your tenants in check. They will also conduct interviews prior to letting out the property to make sure you get the right type of tenant who will respect and care for your home. They will also keep you right in the way of all the paperwork and documentation you will need to arrange for letting out your home from landlord certification to electricity reports.

Paying landlord tax

The accounting process for Landlords can be confusing and time confusing and often puts people off from becoming landlords. You will need to keep details of rental income throughout the year as a registered Landlord, as well as evidence of expenses. It’s really important to ensure your records and accounts are kept up to date to make the process of returning your tax form easier and simple as HMRC require a declaration each year of income from property letting. However, you can also claim for expenses such letting agent’s fees and interest on property loans if you have a residential property. Ease the burden by appointing an accountant who specialises in landlord tax – they will keep everything right so you do not have any nasty bill to pay unexpectedly. Using an accountant for this purpose will ensure your records and tax administration will be kept up to date.


Embracing the Minimalist Design trend around your house

Spring is around and it’s time to breathe some fresh air into your home? Why not embrace the Minimalist Design trend? Achievable easily with details, or adopted all around the house, the look will change the way you see and live your home. Simple, pared down and ultra-contemporary, Minimalist Design brings us back to the very essence of materials and functions for each object. An imperative that nonetheless comes with great delicacy and warm compositions, where naturality serves the well-being of its inhabitants. Here is how to embrace the trend, whether it be in a contemporary urban flat or an open countryside house. Continue Reading

How to: choose plants for your home

Durable, decorative and beneficial for your indoor environment, green plants bring a touch of nature to your home deco. It’s no surprise that they are recommended as an integral part of deco for most interior design trends: Minimalist and natural, Exotic and travel inspired, Rustic countryside… We are meant to live in nature, and if the comfort of our homes has assured assets, it’s hard to deny that bringing the outside world inside is a positive move. Continue Reading

Giving your open kitchen a makeover with a central island

Modular and convivial, the central island is undoubtedly trendy. Here are our ideas to choose or build a kitchen island.

A super functional piece of furniture, the island will allow you to do all your kitchen activities. From prep to dining and storage, everything happens around it. Another asset, it perfectly fits into an open plan kitchen. Like a bar, it delimits the space between living room and kitchen. You guessed it, there’s not much we can say against the kitchem island. Continue Reading