A Homebuyer’s Bill of Rights

The Fine Print

When it comes to purchasing a home, a buyer’s rights are largely determined by the fine print of their contract. And what is permitted in these purchase contracts varies widely from state to state. As such, it’s easy for a novice homebuyer to get roped into signing something that entitles them to less than what their state laws stipulate. Fortunately, according to Eric Bramlett, a real estate agent based in Austin, Texas, most purchase contracts are based on “promulgated forms” that each state has designed for its residential areas. Scanning these forms can help you verify that what you are seeing in a specific contract is in accordance with the laws in your state. “Sometimes these forms can be relatively hard to find,” Bartlett admits, but he suggests that prospective homebuyers start looking on their local real estate commission’s website (here is Texas’s version, for example here) . But Bartlett says that realtors in most cases will be familiar with the regulations and can explain them to prospective buyers. As the home-buying season begins, MainStreet asked experts about the rights homebuyers have in the process, and about what they should know when dealing with realtors, title companies, banks and sellers. Photo Credit: striatic