Home Buying in Houston>Question Details

LuvforTX, Home Buyer in Houston, TX

TX new home Builder won't allow changes to contract? Is it even worth taking the contract to real estate attorney for review before signing or not?

Asked by LuvforTX, Houston, TX Mon Nov 11, 2013

Please advise

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Apparently, you're working with the builder, and not using a Realtor ... that's fine. In such a case, it's not only worth the time, but is absolutely essential that an attorney look over the contract (for a fee, of course). Had you been working with a Realtor, his/her services and expertise would have come at no cost to you as the buyer ... but we're here now.

Builders' sales contracts are written by their attorneys. They do not use those promulgated by the TX Real Estate Commission (TREC). Guess whose side they favor.

You are essentially going into perhaps the most significant (and costly) transaction of your life, without anyone representing you, or looking out for your best interests. The individual who sold you the home works for the builder, and likely doesn't even have a real estate license. His/her sole objective was to sell you that house.

Yes, by all means get with an attorney before signing the contract.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 12, 2013
Some Builders DO use TREC Contracts.....
Flag Tue Nov 12, 2013
I stand corrected ... but be that as it may, I would also take that step, if for no other reason than your own peace of mind. Enjoy your new home!
Flag Tue Nov 12, 2013
Thanks Al. I am working with a Real estate agent but the problem is that by law they cannot give legal advice about contracts nor can they recommend changes to them. Also buyer agents are not allowed to interpret a contract. All they can do is help in understanding without much legal background I am not sure how helpful it is.
Flag Tue Nov 12, 2013
Since nobody is allowed to offer legal advice other than an attorney, by all means, protect yourself. Pay for that service. Then decide whether or not the risks associated with dealing with that builder are not outweighed by the desirability of the house.

Barbara Coker
NMLS#228545
Licensed Mortgage Loan Officer
100% Home Loans All Over Texas!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 12, 2013
Thanks Barabara. The attorneys want to change the contract which builder won't do. So even though the peace of mind is there by consulting with an attorney it doesn't make you feel better if they tell you do not sign this paper. Its not good that builders are not open to suggestions from the attorney. Kind of a deadlock situation if you really want the house you have to sign the biased contract or else walk away ....
Flag Tue Nov 12, 2013
Thanks Barabara. The attorneys want to change the contract which builder won't do. So even though the peace of mind is there by consulting with an attorney it doesn't make you feel better if they tell you do not sign this paper. Its not good that builders are not open to suggestions from the attorney. Kind of a deadlock situation if you really want the house you have to sign the biased contract or else walk away ....
Flag Tue Nov 12, 2013
What is the deal breaker in the contract?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 11, 2013
Yes, I would have a qualified attorney review and explain the contract before signing. Obviously the author of the contract intends to protect their interest not yours. Understanding and affecting your rights and remedies in a real estate transaction may save you from huge loses if a dispute arises. Also, be sure to get it inspected at the first opportunity, even if it's still under construction.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 11, 2013
They will likely not change anything in their contracts to assist you or make you feel better. Is there something in particular your concerned with?

Mark McNitt
m 832-567-4357
Bernstein Realty, Inc.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 11, 2013
Builder contracts are drafted to protect there interests. Your agent or agent's broker should be able to give you insight on your issue before hiring an attorney. Hopefully you have one, no advantage to not having one contrary to popular belief.
I'll help however I can: Darryl with realm real estate. 832.279.6341 darrylsells@gmail.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 11, 2013
IF you have not signed a contract purchase a property ... recommend have a Realtor OR real estate attorney review the contract and represent you . There could be many "hidden terms and conditions" you not familiar with that would to advantage of the builder.

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1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 11, 2013
Most builders, as in 99.9% will not allow cross outs or changes to their contracts. The advice I can give you is to be well represented (have a knowledgeable Realtor) that is familiar with the builder. Who can provide insight, and advice on their policies and practices.
I Worked for one of Houston's Largest and most prominent Home Builders- If you would like more information- please contact me at rebeccav@johndaugherty.com or 832-607-2562.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 12, 2013
Cannot understand the contract. I am sure the real estate agent can assist but wanted to understand everything before signing it in terms of legal perspective
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 11, 2013
Agreed but I am not sure if I want to rely on Real Estate Agent for legal advice regarding contracts even if he/she is top of his game. Its one thing that the seller uses a generic TX seller contract but most of these home builders have their customized versions with lots of fine prints.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 11, 2013
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