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Is there any website to get a template for decent/basic contracts (i.e. leases, purchase agreements, partnership agreements)? I want a base to start, without having to sign up for a free trial and then get hit with a bill when I forget to cancel...

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I would be very careful using templates off the internet. The laws are very state to state, and the random forms you may be able to find are likely not suitable.

You get what you pay for. Find a decent RE lawyer

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Don't use free contract templates. Ever. The examples you listed each require very different information, and what is/is not enforceable depends on choice of law and subject matter. If you really can't pay an attorney for each contract when you need one, at least pay an attorney to provide you with templates and explain what different clauses mean.

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As a real estate lawyer, the idea of folks going out and using internet forms is scary.

I’ve developed my own form documents over time, stating with a contract for a specific deal and then refining and fine tuning it over time.

Even when I represented the same client on deals over and over again, I’d always have 1-2 dozen questions for them for the particular deal.

You can usually get away with a pre-printed form for a home purchase, but anything more than that and you’re usually going to need something a bit more sophisticated.

Another thing to keep in mind is that you can’t figure out what the market norms are when you just find a form someplace.

For example, let’s say you’re buying a leased up office building for $10M.

What’s a fair deposit?
Do you want them to make an additional deposit after the inspection period?
How long should their inspection period be?
Can they talk to tenants before the end of the inspection period?
Should the buyer be allowed a financing contingency?
What percentage of the tenants have to provide estoppels as a condition to closing?
Who will pay transfer taxes and title charges?
Will the seller be expected to give a title rep? Environmental rep?
Will the reps survive, and, if so, for how long?
Will each party have the right to seek all remedies available at law or in equity, or will there be a limitation on remedies?
Can the seller enter into new leases during the pendency of the contract?
Will the buyer have to assume service contracts associated with the property?
How much should the basket be?
Should it be a deductible or a tipping basket?
What should the cap be?

I could go on and list another dozen questions easily. Firms may or may not address some of these issues, and if they don’t, you won’t even appreciate what’s missing if you don’t have experience in this area. Even if you have a comprehensive form, without adequate experience, how do you know about what market norms are? If you are operating in more than one state, how do you know what the requirements in each particular state are?

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Like I said, get a pro!

A1 makes some great points - love all the specific questions.

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