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What geographical areas do you cover?

Our firm handles legal matters throughout the entire State of New York and Connecticut. We also work with local counsel on matters in various states such as Texas, Massachusetts, Michigan, Florida, New Jersey, Tennessee, etc.

What are your fees?

Our firm offers the most reasonable fees while providing exceptional and personal service to our clients. Please call our office for a fee quote on your legal matter.

Do I really need to get an engineer inspection prior signing the contract?

An informed purchaser is always the most satisfied so our office strongly recommends that all purchasers retain an engineer or property inspector to inspect any property they are considering purchasing.  A thorough inspection will include structural, plumbing, electrical, roofing, termite and radon testing as well as a search for any existing oil tanks on the property.  Our office has obtained substantial reductions in the purchase price or has required the seller to make necessary repairs based on material defects that were uncovered during an inspection. The price of an inspection is a small but worthwhile investment on such a major purchase and often the cost of the report pays for itself in seller concessions.

Purchasing or selling a house or other investment property can be stressful, but with James G. Dibbini & Associates as your partner, the process can be much more manageable.  Contact us today if you are thinking of buying or selling your home or investment property.

How can I use the proceeds from the sale of my home to purchase my new home?

One option is to add language to your contract of sale that requires the purchaser to enter into a possession agreement at the time of closing. A possession agreement allows the seller to remain in the home for a short period of time after the closing, usually ranging from days to months. In addition, the possession agreement usually includes a daily monetary rate charged to the seller for remaining in the home beyond the date specified in the possession agreement.

Another option is to close the sale of your current property and the purchase of your new property on the same date. The purchaser on your sale would be instructed to issue the sales proceeds payable to the parties that your seller would require on your purchase. This way you can physically take the proceed checks you get from your purchasers and deliver them to the sellers on your purchase.

Contact our office if the sale and purchase relates to an investment property. Our team of attorneys will advise you about the Internal Revenue Code Section 1031, Tax Deferred Exchanges, which could help defer the capital gains taxes during a real estate transaction.

Purchasing or selling a house or investment property can be stressful, but with James G. Dibbini & Associates assisting you, the process can be much more manageable. Call us today if you are thinking of buying or selling your home or investment property.

What happens after the contracts are signed by both buyer and seller?

After the negotiating phase has been concluded and the contracts are fully executed and exchanged between the parties, the purchaser’s attorney orders a full title report of the property from a title insurance company. The title company conducts an investigation of the property to uncover any possible outstanding mortgages, tax arrears, violations and liens against the property and its owner(s) and to verify seller’s ownership of the property.

Additionally, the purchaser is now obligated to seek financing if the contract of sale is contingent upon purchaser obtaining financing. A purchaser is urged to only seek financing as permitted in the contract; that is if the contract does not permit any particular type of loan such as an FHA loan, the purchaser should not be applying for that type of loan. The purchaser should keep their attorney updated on the mortgage commitment process as the purchaser is typically given a short period, typically 30 to 45 days, to secure a mortgage commitment before exercising a right to cancel the contract.
After title issues are cleared and the purchaser’s financing has been secured and is clear to close, the parties schedule a date for the closing. Your attorney should provide you an estimate of all the closing costs and adjustments and walk you through the process and needed bank checks for closing.

Purchasing or selling a house can be stressful, but with James G. Dibbini & Associates assisting you, the process can be much more manageable. Call us today if you are thinking of buying or selling your home or investment property.

What if I cannot attend the closing because of personal circumstances?

Typically the buyer and seller both attend a real estate transaction closing. The closing date stated in a contract is usually flexible to accommodate scheduling of all the parties involved. Sometimes it is not possible for one of the parties to attend and in those circumstances our office can prepare a power of attorney which allows us or anyone else of your choosing to close the transaction in your stead. We can also set up a time for you to go over all of the closing documents, understand the closing adjustments and proceeds to be exchanged at closing. They will then have you pre-sign the necessary documents prior to the date of closing.

Since there are different types of power of attorney forms and varying levels of authorization one can grant to an agent, it is strongly suggested that the power of attorney be prepared by an attorney.

Purchasing or selling a house or investment property can be stressful, but with James G. Dibbini & Associates assisting you, the process can be much more manageable.  Call us today if you are thinking of buying or selling your home or investment property.

Must I close on the actual date stated in the Contract?

The answer depends on the terms of the contract.  For instance, a contract which states a closing date of “on or about December 15, of this year” allows either party to adjourn the closing for a period of up to thirty days while still being in compliance with the contract. However, a closing date of “December 15, of this year, time is of the essence” sets a firm closing date and the party to the contract that is unable to close by this date may be in breach of the contract, allowing the other party to make a claim for damages. Depending on how a contract is written, if the purchaser fails to meet the “time of the essence” closing date, the purchaser’s contract deposit may be at risk of loss.

When entering into a residential or commercial contract of sale, it is often recommended that the date for closing not be set as “time of the essence” as there are too many variables (especially when financing is involved) that could affect your ability to close as originally expected.

Purchasing or selling a house and investment property can be stressful, but with James G. Dibbini & Associates assisting you, the process can be much more manageable.  Call us today if you are thinking of buying or selling your home or property.

How much can I expect to pay for "closing costs" when purchasing property?

A purchaser can generally expect to pay:
An insurance premium (except on co-ops) for title insurance which can range from $1,000 to $10,000 or higher, depending on the purchase price and the amount of your mortgage.
A mortgage recording tax (except on co-op financing)

  • Westchester County (except Yonkers) = borrower pays 1.05% of amount of the mortgage less $30;
  • Yonkers = borrower pays 1.55% of the amount of the mortgage less $30;
  • New York City = borrower pays 1.8% of the amount of the mortgage less $30 IF the mortgage is $499,999.00 or less
  • New York City = borrower pays 1.925% of the amount of the mortgage less $30 IF the mortgage is $500,000 or greater.

A “mansion tax” of 1% of the full purchase price where the purchase price is $1,000,000 or more.
Title search and recording fees of $500 to $1,000.
Legal fees can vary and depend on the circumstances of the transaction. The cost of a new survey (if necessary) of $600 to $1,500.
The purchaser should obtain a Truth-In-Lending from their lender which will outline the lender’s estimated fees, including discount points, bank service charges, application fees, appraisal fees, and bank’s attorney fee.

How much can I expect to pay for "closing costs" when selling property?

A seller can generally expect to pay:
Realtor’s commissions of 4% to 6% of the purchase price.
Transfer taxes:

  • New York State Transfer Tax = $2.00 per $500 of purchase price
  • Real Property Transfer Tax – Yonkers = 1.5%         of the purchase price over $25,000         – Mt Vernon = 1% of the purchase price         with an exemption on the first $100,000 of consideration.         – New York City =         1% of the purchase price of $500,000.00 or less         – New York City = 1.425% of         the purchase price of $500,000.01 or more

A fee to payoff and record a satisfaction of your mortgage is generally $250 per mortgage
Legal fees can vary and depend on the circumstances of the transaction.

How much money will I need as a downpayment to purchase a house?

Usually, 10% of the purchase price must be paid upon signing the contracts of sale. However, depending on the terms of the sale, sellers may be willing to accept a lower downpayment.

How quickly will my landlord-tenant case be handled?

Timing of a landlord-tenant matter is largely impacted by whether the action brought is a nonpayment or holdover action and in what court the case is brought.  Typically cases in Westchester County resolve much quicker than cases brought in the boroughs of NYC.

If the matter is a nonpayment proceeding, and the landlord has already provided the tenant with a rent demand, our office will prepare the litigation paperwork within 24 hours and send litigation paperwork (also known as the notice of petition and petition) to the local marshal, sheriff or process server to be immediately file with the court and served upon the tenant. If the case is brought in Westchester, the litigation paperwork will usually put the tenant on notice to appear in court the following week.  If the case is brought in one of the boroughs of NYC, the tenant will have an opportunity to answer the petition at which time the court would set a court date.

If the matter is a hold-over proceeding, our office will prepare the appropriate notices within 24 hours and have them immediately served upon the tenant as required. When the notices expire, we check with the client to determine if the notices have been complied with by the tenant or if immediate action is required. Depending on the type of case and court you are in, the process can take from weeks to months to conclude.

Being involved in landlord-tenant matters can be very stressful, but with James G. Dibbini & Associates assisting you, the process can be much more manageable with faster and positive results.  Call us today if you have an existing landlord-tenant matter or question.

What is your policy on settlements related to landlord-tenant cases?

First and foremost our obligation is to our client and to obtain our client’s desired result on each and every case we handle.  We do not take a cookie cutter approach when representing clients and their matters.  After learning of all of the facts related to the particular matter and obtaining all of the relevant documents, it is our job to communicate the law and procedure to our client so our client can be an integral part of the decision making process for each case.  Claims are not settled without first obtaining client’s approval.  If that means contacting the client from court in order to avoid further delays, adjournments and wasted time, that’s what we’ll do.

In preparation for all court appearances, our office contacts our client before every court appearance and obtains updates on their matters and settlement parameters.  If a case is not able to be settled, we seek the earliest dates for a trial and demand, when necessary, payments to be made and/or escrow to be tendered.

Being involved in landlord-tenant matter can be very stressful, but with James G. Dibbini & Associates assisting you, the process can be much more manageable with faster and positive results.  Call us today if you have an existing landlord-tenant matter or question.

Do you issue regular status reports on what happened in landlord-tenant court or housing court?

We pride ourselves on our high level of communication we have with our clients.  We keep our clients informed during the entire litigation process.  After each court appearance or other development, we issue written status reports to our clients and send via email, fax, regular mail or telephone. The method of communication is determined by our clients.  In addition, we communicate with our clients even when nothing new has happened on their matter.

When a settlement agreement or stipulation is entered in court and a payout schedule is agreed to by all parties, our office will contentiously follow up with the client to ensure the agreement is being complied with and if not, take immediate legal action to protect the client’s rights.

Being involved in landlord-tenant matters can be very stressful, but with James G. Dibbini & Associates assisting you, the process can be much more manageable with faster and positive results.  Call us today if you have an existing landlord-tenant matter or question.

Why do landlord-tenant cases take so long?

The length of time it takes to complete a landlord-tenant case depends on which municipality your case is in.  If you are in Westchester County a case will be concluded quicker than if the case is in the Bronx on Manhattan.  Furthermore, if you are in upper Westchester County, the case will be concluded quicker than if your matter is in Yonkers or Mt. Vernon.

The speed by which a case is concluded also depends on the type of case it is.  There are two types of landlord-tenant proceedings: one is the nonpayment proceeding where the tenant is taken to court for the tenant’s failure to pay rent; the second type is a holdover proceeding where the tenant has breached a non-money related provision in the lease and remains in possession after the lease was terminated by the landlord.

Due process dictates certain steps be followed before legally evicting a tenant.  By law, whether or not a tenant has a lease, before a landlord may commence a non-payment proceeding, a tenant must be given at least a 3 day notice that the rent is owed and if not paid legal action will commence.  Upon the expiration of the 3 day notice our office prepares the notice of petition and petition and then schedules the matter on the court calendar.  Obtaining the court date usually takes less than two weeks, which allows time for the marshal or process server to file the petition with the court and serve the tenant.  After court is concluded, we usually are awarded a judgment for the amount of rent owed (if a nonpayment proceeding) and a warrant and submit the judgment and warrant to the court for the Judge’s signature.  Only when these papers are signed by the Judge and a 72 hour notice is served upon the tenant and expires can a tenant be evicted.  Although we do the best we can to expedite every step of the process, it is still a process that takes some time.

If commencing a hold over proceeding, the delay in getting a defaulting tenant out is usually compounded by additional notice requirements such as a notice to cure, which gives the tenant an opportunity to cure an ongoing breach of the lease. Call us today to discuss your specific details.

Being involved in landlord-tenant matters can be very stressful, but with James G. Dibbini & Associates assisting you, the process can be much more manageable with faster and positive results.  Call us today if you have an existing landlord-tenant matter or question.

My tenant‘s stay is expired, so why can’t I call the marshal to give the 72-hour notice and then lockout the tenant?

As explained above, the 72-hour notice cannot be served by the marshal or sheriff until the Judge signs the judgment and warrant of eviction. We expedite the signing as much as possible, however in some of the local courts, this can take up to 2-3 weeks because the courts have such a high volume of landlord-tenant cases.

What are some of the benefits for Section 8 participation?

  • Section 8 is a governmental assistance program which helps tenants with the rent.
  • There is a guaranty of income to landlord/owner because Housing Assistance Payments (HAP) are mailed to the landlord/owner directly (or to a designated agent of the landlord/owner) on the last working day of the month.
  • Risks of rent default are reduced because the tenant’s portion of rent is based on their income

What is an order to show cause in a landlord-tenant proceeding and how many can a tenant be allowed to file?

An order to show cause or sometimes referred to as an OSC is a motion made by a party (typically a tenant) to be heard by a Judge on a pending action.  Usually the OSC is filed after a landlord obtains a judgment of eviction and a tenant is served with a notice of eviction or a 72 hour notice of eviction.  Procedurally, the party wishing to file an OSC (again, typically the tenant) submits paperwork to the court after which, the Judge usually signs, allowing the case back into court if there is an excusable default and meritorious defense.  Although the legal standard is that both an excusable default and a meritorious defense is needed for the Judge to sign the OSC, most tenants’ applications for an OSC are granted notwithstanding the fact the legal burden may not have been met. In most cases, the effect of the OSC buys extra time to either pay the outstanding judgment or move out.  By filing the OSC, the tenant stops or “stays” the eviction proceeding until the matter gets back into court and is heard by the judge.  Technically there is no limit to the number of OSCs that are allowed, although after a few applications Judges may not sign more orders if there clearly is no merit to the tenant’s motions.

Being involved in landlord-tenant matters can be very stressful, but with James G. Dibbini & Associates assisting you, the process can be much more manageable with faster and positive results.  Call us today if you have an existing landlord-tenant matter or question.

© Copyright - James G. Dibbini & Associates, P.C. This web site is designed to provide general information only and to help in the choice of appropriate legal counsel. The information contained herein should not be construed as legal advice. Legal jurisdictions differ on major and minor aspects of the law and each legal situation is unique; requiring that all legal situations be addressed with qualified legal counsel. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Submitting or receiving information or questions through this web site does not create an attorney client relationship. No attorney client relationship will exist unless you meet with one of our attorneys and sign a retainer agreement. Please do not submit any information that is case specific, personal or confidential. If you have legal problem or issue you should always consult with a qualified lawyer experienced in the appropriate area of law. We would be glad to discuss your specific situation with you, should you so desire, by phone at (914) 965-1011.