What Is Real Estate Law?

The legal field of real estate law encompasses a broad range of topics. It deals with everything from land ownership and transfer to property investment and development. In addition to providing advice concerning construction contracts, financing agreements and property management, real estate attorneys can help their clients navigate governmental regulations that pertain to zoning and environmental conditions.

The most fundamental aspect of real estate law involves property rights and interests. This includes the ownership of land, buildings and other structures on the surface as well as the materials underneath the surface. A property owner’s rights in this area of law are generally defined by a contract, and the scope of those rights depends on whether the property is owned outright or subject to various limitations.

Real estate law also defines the way in which a property can be transferred between owners. This is typically done by sale, but it can be accomplished in other ways as well. For example, property rights can be voluntarily limited or shared through covenants, easements and air rights conveyances. These limitations can be imposed by the property owner or by government regulations pertaining to zoning and environmental conditions. Ownership can also be transferred involuntary, through adverse possession or eminent domain.

Another important facet of real estate law is determining where and what kind of structures can be built on a piece of land. This determination is usually based on the property’s zoning status, but it can be further influenced by the requirements of the local building codes. Real estate law can also determine how much a homeowner must pay in property taxes.

One of the most challenging aspects of real estate law is finding qualified and experienced attorneys to provide guidance when needed. Many people find it helpful to ask for recommendations from friends and family members who have recently engaged in real estate transactions. Others consult the websites of their state’s bar associations to obtain a list of qualified attorneys.

If you are considering a career in real estate law, the best place to start is by choosing a law school that offers a Master of Laws (LLM) program in this discipline. Whether you are looking to enter the field as a full-time attorney or as a part-time student, an LLM degree can give you the skills you need to succeed in this exciting field of law.

To learn more about the top law schools that offer an LLM in Real Estate Law, download our free guide today! Simply provide your email address to get your free copy now. Or, if you would like to speak with an admissions advisor right away, call us at 866-396-8253. We look forward to assisting you!