Why You Need an Attorney to Review Your Mortgage Before Signing

February 15, 2024

Buying a home in Florida is a significant investment, and with the stakes so high, it’s understandable that homebuyers look for ways to save money throughout the process. However, one area where cutting corners can end up proving to be more costly than anticipated is in signing mortgage loans without prior review by your own attorney.

In Florida real estate transactions, attorneys play critical roles from drafting the contracts on behalf of the lending institutions to reviewing those details on the buyer’s behalf and handling important issues like title insurance and escrow. Given that bank attorneys draft these mortgages, it only makes sense to have a legal professional on your side to review the terms.

Protection from Hidden or Unclear Terms

Banks make money off the interest payments borrowers make on loans they fund. Because of this, they are naturally inclined to secure favorable terms that protect their financial interests, rather than the borrower’s. This doesn’t necessarily mean they’re “out to get you,” but it does mean they must act to protect their investments.

Your attorney’s review of your mortgage before signing can unveil hidden terms and clarify others, ensuring they are fully understood and acceptable. For instance, an “all monies clause” might obligate you to the bank beyond the mortgage, encompassing all debts, potentially risking your home over unrelated financial obligations. Similarly, an “acceleration clause” could move up total repayment under certain conditions.

The legal jargon used in contracts often confuses borrowers because bank attorneys have extensive legal training and write in a way that fully secures their own interests. The disconnect between buyers and contract language often complicates the process, so having your own attorney review the contract simplifies this process.

Ensuring Terms Are As Agreed Upon

It’s crucial that you verify the language within any mortgage contract accurately reflects the terms discussed and agreed upon with your lender. Misunderstandings or overlooked clauses can transform what seemed like favorable terms into unforeseen financial burdens. Working with an attorney ensures that the contract mirrors the agreed-upon terms and your understanding of them without hidden clauses or conditions that could alter the financial costs down the line.

Know What You’re Signing

At Schlegel Livingston, we review the loan documents with the borrower carefully to be certain there are no hidden charges or requirements that may be detrimental to the borrower in the future. We want to make the homebuying process easier for the people of Florida. Our goal is to streamline the process and make it legally sound and comfortable for Floridians, ensuring that you step into homeownership with confidence and security. Before signing on the line of any mortgage documents, we encourage you to contact our team.