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March 2018 Archives

Are no-contest clauses enforceable in Missouri?

As you prepare your will in St. Louis, you no doubt have concerns about how your wishes will be received by your beneficiaries. The last thing that you want to do is cause contention amongst them (given, of course, that they not only share a relationship with you, but also likely with each other). However, you also want your desires regarding your estate to be respected. Some might suggest eliminating the potential for disputes by putting a no-contest clause in your will. Yet many states view such clauses as being unenforceable. Is Missouri among them? 

What do I need to know about buying an HOA home?

There are many HOA horror stories in Missouri and elsewhere, and you have likely heard at least a few. They typically cover fights over landscaping, paint color, fencing, lighting and a myriad other issues. If you are home-shopping in an HOA community, you should know about the by-laws and codes that govern such things so you can decide whether you want to live within those confines. But what you really need to look at is the HOA’s financial picture.

Keeping your home in the family

When it’s time to downsize the empty nest, it’s common to want to keep it in the family. There’s no better way to preserve the great memories than to make new ones with the next generation.

When do you get your earnest money back?

While buying a new home in St. Louis is always an exciting proposition, it is also an expensive one. There is the matter of coming up with the down payment on the home, and then also having to put up earnest money to put the home you want under contract (your earnest money is typically applied towards your deposit when the deal closes). According to Realtor.com, in some cases, a seller can require that you offer as much as 10 percent of the purchase price in earnest money. That money is your financial commitment to doing what's needed to buy the home and offers reassurance to justify the buyer taking it off the market. So when do you get it back? 

The benefits of early estate planning

Estate planning is not always an easy topic to discuss, but there can be many advantages to addressing these plans head on. Despite the common assumption that this financial process is only for the elderly and the wealthy, Missouri residents who start sooner than later can save time and money in the long run. Recently, some experts have considered the wide range of benefits of beginning these plans early. 

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