A land contract is similar to a wrap-around mortgage. Again, your mother would be your lender using this method. Here is a link that you might find interesting that explains the basics of a land contract. http://www.wisegeek.org/what-is-a-land-contract.htm
If that link does not work, just google "land contract."
As you might imagine, these types of financing carry their own unique risks, but a good attorney will help to minimize those risks. These methods have the potential of saving you and your mother some costs of refinancing, so you could use those savings to help pay the attorney fees.
Option #1: Put your name on the deed along with your mother and make the mortgage payments for her. Benefits: Your credit is not affected by having a loan attached to it and you mom gets to stay in the house.
Option #2: Have a Title Company (much cheaper than a real estate attorney) prepare a Warranty Deed to transfer 100% of the ownership to you. To show good faith to your mother, I personally would also record a life estate which allows your mom the right to live in the property until her death. You would then need to get a bank loan to pay off her mortgage at the time of closing.
I'd just like to add one thing
Just be aware that you will likely also have to make a down payment as well. This down payment will vary depending on whether you live in the house or not. If you intend to reside there then you can finance it as an owner-occupied primary residence. You'll have more loan options and you'll probably only need 3.5% to 5% depending on the program. If you are not going to live there then this would be considered an investment property and would likely require a 20-25% down payment.
You do not sound naÃ¯ve. There are many questions when it comes to real estate and much confusion. . That is why I always recommend a realtor to someone who wants to buy or sell real estate. An attorney will draw up paperwork, a realtor will do the paperwork and coach you as well.
I live in Arvada and love Arvada. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to call me direct
Your Castle Real Estate
Have a great day.