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Important California real estate laws

On Behalf of | Mar 27, 2024 | Real Estate

California has a thriving real estate market, and navigating its legal landscape successfully requires understanding key laws and regulations. Whether you’re buying or selling property in the Golden State, being aware of these laws is crucial for smooth transactions.

Some of the most important real estate laws to know in California are introduced below.

Disclosures and inspections

Sellers are required to disclose certain information about a property’s condition to potential buyers. This includes disclosing any known material defects, such as structural issues or environmental hazards. Additionally, buyers have the right to conduct various inspections, such as termite, roof and mold inspections, before finalizing the purchase.

Transfer taxes and property taxes

Buyers and sellers should be aware of transfer taxes, which are levied on the transfer of real property. These taxes are typically split between the buyer and seller or negotiated as part of the sales contract. Property taxes are based on the assessed value of the property and are subject to Proposition 13 restrictions, which limit increases in assessed value.

Fair housing laws

There are stringent fair housing laws aimed at preventing discrimination in housing transactions. These laws prevent discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, familial status or disability. Real estate professionals must adhere to these laws when advertising properties, screening tenants or negotiating sales.

Foreclosure procedures

In the event of mortgage default, California follows non-judicial foreclosure procedures, allowing lenders to foreclose on properties without court intervention. However, certain borrower protections, such as the right to request a loan modification or mediation, are available under California law.

Navigating the state’s real estate laws can be complex, but with a clear understanding of these regulations, buyers and sellers can more confidently navigate the market and protect their interests.