Ruel Woolcock & Co.

Jamaican Real Estate Attorneys


We offer a wide range of real estate legal services including

  • Land Sales and Purchases
  • Mortgages
  • Leases - Commercial and Residential
  • Real Estate Development - Subdivisions or strata
  • Lost Certificate of title (Application for a new title)
  • Application for land title (unregistered land)
  • Notation of death of a joint tenant proprietor
  • Addition and removal of a name(s) on title
  • Powers of Attorney under the Registration of title Act or otherwise
  • Boundary rectification - encroachments or improper fencing
  • Modification and discharge of restrictive covenants 
  • much more (see home page)

We also offer these services:

  • Personal injury claims and settlements
  • Divorce
  • Settlement of Estates (Probate & Administration)
  • General Civil practice in both the Supreme Court and Resident Magistrate's Court
  • Incorporation of companies and businessnames
  • Estate planning
  • Much more

Things you should know when purchasing residential real estate

  • Usual deposit is 10% of sale price - Please note for persons who are planning on borrowing from the NHT or a Building Society which offers, say 95% financing, this does not mean that you can only deposit 5% since this is not sufficient to pay transfer tax and stamp duties.  You might wonder then "what chance would i get of borrowing 95% if the deposit is more than 5% ?". The answer is quite simple. These institutions can lend you your closing costs  which are in addition to the purchase price. If you do not require a loan for closing costs you may be refunded a portion of what you paid out of your pocket.
  • Before committing yourself to buying, that is signing a Sale Agreement, make sure you can afford the mortgage you will be seeking. To do this you should have a sit-down with your proposed Lender and discuss with them your eligibility for a loan and the amount. Infact some Building Societies have an online service which allows you to calculate your loan candidacy based on your income and expenses. Armed with that knowledge you  will more or less avoid the many problems that may occur if you are unable to access loan financing such as the forfeiture of a portion of your deposit.
  • In addition to the purchase price please budget for closing costs. What are these? They include your half contribution to Stamp Duty, Registration fees and cost of the Agreement. Most lending institution will also require of you to pay a processing fee as a condition for approving your loan as well as their Attorney's cost in registering mortgage on title. The fees vary from one institution to the next.
  • If you are borrowing be prepared to wait between 90 and 120 days before you get your keys. If purchasing cash this time can be reduced to about 60 days.
  • To all cash purchasers you may be tempted to just pay for the property without more. Dont ever do that until you have done a Surveyor's Identifcation Report which will tell you two very important things. First - whether the property you are buying relates to the title referred to in the Agreement. Second - whether there are any restrictive covenant breaches or encroachments. As well you must not pay over funds directly to anyone other than an Attorney-at-Law or a reputable real estate agent unless you are otherwise instructed by your Lawyer. We have  seen several sorry and quite reprehensible examples of the disaster that can occur if you do otherwise. And we certainly would not want you to lose your hard earned money.