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Helpful tips to be prepared for the home closing procedure: An Interview with Brian Stark of Stark Law, PLLC

By Brian Stark

Tell us a little bit about your company and its foundation.

Previously associated with high volume real estate law firms in the greater Burlington area since 2003, in the Fall of 2013 I opened my own office: Stark Law, PLLC. The majority of our work is representing the interests of Vermont real estate and estate planning clients, as well as homeowner's association & those forming business entities. Having the experience, depth and breadth of knowledge from my prior firms but being a small practice allows Stark Law, PLLC to provide the experience and efficiency of a large firm, but with the responsiveness and individual attention of a small practice.

Please explain the general process of closing a home sale:

Generally in Vermont the process begins with the prospective buyer making an offer to the seller in the form of a fully completed and signed purchase and sale contract and deposit check. Assuming the terms meet with the seller's approval, they sign the purchase and sale contract to accept the offer and the property is under contract. If the terms of the buyer's offer do not meet with the seller's approval then there is generally negotiation of the terms until a final version of the purchase and sale contract is arrived at and signed. From there, the parties embark on satisfying their respective obligations under the terms of the contract. On the buyer's side that means completing any home inspections, etc. as well as completing the requirements of their lender for financing and the buyer's attorney conducting the title search. For the sellers, that includes having their attorney prepare the deed and other transfer documents, as well as any repairs required by the contract and leaving the property broom clean & free of their personal property prior to closing. Once these items are completed to satisfaction, then a closing date/time is scheduled and the signing of the documents, exchange of funds and keys takes place.

What is the realtors role along this process?

In transactions involving Realtors, the Realtor is involved throughout the process including listing the property (if representing the seller), viewing properties (if representing the buyer), negotiating and assisting with the drafting of the purchase and sale contract. From there, the Realtors help with access to the property for inspections & appraisals, coordinating resolution of any issues that come up, and most importantly keeping everyone moving forward to the closing making sure all ducks are in a row.

How long can this process take?

As a general rule, from the date of signing of the purchase and sale contract the closing occurs within thirty to forty-five days.

What are some issues that can arise during this process and how can they be resolved?

Each time I think I have seen it all of the potential issues that can arise, something new pops up. From title issues to inspection or appraisal issues to underwriting issues, there are so many moving parts in a real estate transaction there is the potential for an issue to arise in many areas. Luckily, those are generally the exception rather than the rule. Nevertheless, that is why having an experienced team of Realtor, lender & attorney is key to a successful transaction.

What is the best way for people to reach you and or your company?

802.497.2010 , info@starklawvermont.com , www.starklawvermont.com

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