Swallow Your Pride, Call a Real Estate Attorney

Estate planning lawyers

What you’re about to read is both a true story and an appeal. I am currently involved in the real estate scenario from you-know-where, and it would be totally avoidable if the seller was a sensible person. Here’s the deal: my husband and I found the perfect house and decided that we wanted to go ahead and put in an offer. The seller is more or less selling the house himself. He paid to have it listed, but doesn’t have a seller’s agent, which is fine. Plenty of people negotiate real estate sale without agents. Most of those people, however, have the support of a real estate law firm. This is not the case, here.

It wouldn’t be such a big deal, except that neither the seller nor his lawyer have any amount of knowledge about the real estate world, to the extent that the seller became very angry when he found out that we had to schedule an inspection of the home in order to get the support of the bank. It’s that bad. Many people ask the question, “Are real estate attorney fees really worth it?” Honestly, it does depend on your situation. This guy has the double whammy of having neither an experienced real estate agent nor a residential real estate attorney. It is true that some sellers are able to simply hire a local lawyer and negotiate the move successfully, alongside their real estate agents. If you’re selling a home yourself, however, I implore you, call a real estate law firm.

You might be wondering, what does a real estate attorney do? Real estate law is a specialty full of nuances not covered under general contract law, and standard lawyers are often less familiar with the ins and outs of contracts. It is a very common scenario for sellers to choose a family friend who is a lawyer in an effort to save a little money, and in those situations, it is very common for that lawyer to make unreasonable changes to a contract. Real life example? After we had signed the contract, the seller came back with a whole number of negligible changes which, if we had been so inclined, would have made it legal for us to walk away without penalty. No longer wanting to sell us the washer and dryer wasn’t a crime. The time when he chose to address it, however, could have cost him a sale if we were less reasonable than we are.

Basically, it comes down to this. A real estate law firm provides these major benefits:

  • They can negotiate in favor of their clients.
  • They are highly knowledgeable about real estate laws in their areas.
  • They handle all drafting of important documents like leases, closing papers, and contracts.

  • They can be put in charge of transaction review and review of paperwork regarding leasing, buying, or selling of a property.

You’re not under any obligation to hire a real estate law firm, but it’s a good idea, especially if you’re not working with a seller’s agent. This particular seller is lucky we’re patient people, but you might not be so lucky. Save yourself a little trouble, save your buyer a lot of agony, and call a real estate firm. It’s worth it. Research more here.

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