Commonly Overlooked Florida Standardized Real Estate Contract Changes

Standardized contracts are often used in Florida real estate transactions. They are meant to provide uniformity and make deals easier while simultaneously offering clients the security of knowing that the Florida Bar Association has endorsed their forms. While standardized contracts can expedite transactions, saving time and money, it is possible to change the forms in minor ways that drastically affect one or both parties. Commonly overlooked Florida standardized real estate contract changes can cause real financial harm if a person goes to closing without noticing that the document was edited.

Provision Omissions

It is possible to change a contract to omit certain provisions that are often a standard part of a real estate contract. These seemingly minor omissions can drastically reduce the responsibilities of one party while leaving the other party without any recourse other than cancelling the entire contract. Certain things like inspection, repair, and defect notice provisions being removed from a standard contract can make it difficult for a buyer to insist on repairs that a standard contract would entitle them to receive. Though disclosures are still necessary, removing key provisions can strip either party of protection they expect to receive.

Shifting Obligations

Either party can edit standard contracts in their favor by shifting key obligations from them to the other person. A standard contract that is viewed as a blueprint that meets Florida law can be changed to only include provisions that benefit the buyer or release the seller from traditional obligations. Once a slanted Florida real estate contract is signed by both parties, it becomes legally binding and is considered valid. The only way to get the contract changed at that point is with the written agreement of all parties. A person who has successfully avoided potentially expensive real estate-related obligations may not be willing to sign an agreement changing the slanted contract.

Exact Time Frames

The average real estate contract focuses on making sure transactions are completed in a reasonable time frame. However, it is possible for a contract to include specific dates for every aspect of the transaction. Once dates are included in the contract, verbal agreements cannot alter those dates. Failing to pay a deposit, close, or complete any contractual obligation on or before the agreed upon date gives the other party the right to cancel the transaction completely.

Consulting a Real Estate Attorney

Florida real estate transactions are often complicated, especially for those who are new to residential or commercial real estate. People who do not have experience with these transactions may find themselves agreeing to something that places them at a significant legal and financial disadvantage. Contacting a qualified real estate attorney to review contracts prior to signing them is one way to protect yourself, your family, or your business. The attorneys at Costa & Associates are prepared to offer you the support you need throughout each stage of your real estate purchase or sale. Contact us today at 305-827-0100 to schedule a consultation at our conveniently located Miami Lakes office.

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