Buying a home or even leasing a property can be a huge undertaking with significant financial implications. Add to this the fact that the contracts typically used in these types of agreements can be dozens of pages long and contain a ton of information that is written in what can affectionately be referred to as “legalese,” and it’s easy to see how the layperson can become confused. Before signing your name on the dotted line of a legally binding document that you don’t fully understand, enlisting the help of an experienced real estate attorney might be a wise decision. Here’s why...
Negotiation – Just because the other party has taken the time to draft up a legal document doesn’t mean you have to agree to the terms set within. In fact, there is usually quite a bit of wiggle room available before both parties reach an agreement. The key is having someone in your corner that understands real estate law and can advise you on the best deal before and during the negotiation process.
Contracts – Once the terms of the agreement have been reached, the next step in the process – whether residential real estate or commercial real estate – is properly memorializing everything in writing. The problem is, unless you’ve got experience drawing up a valid contract that complies with all the real estate laws in your area, this part of the process can be incredibly complex and confusing and is therefore best left to a skilled real estate attorney.
Property Transfers – In cases where property is being transferred, such as those scenarios that involve trusts, partnerships or corporations, the ensuing negotiations and subsequent contract preparation can be downright mind boggling. An experienced real estate attorney will have a professional understanding of these types of arrangements and how executing them will pan out. Most importantly, said attorney can ensure that the contract is compliant with the real estate law within your state.
Liens – Another important yet complex subject is that of dealing with property liens. A real estate attorney can quickly and effectively perform a title search to ensure that the property in question is free of any judgments or liens. This determines whether the seller has the legal right to sell the property and can eliminate the chance of any unexpected surprises down the road. Should a lien be discovered, the lawyer can then assist with negotiation to get it taken care of so that the deal can proceed.
Filings – Finally, hiring a real estate attorney can help make the process of filing much easier and more efficient. Regardless of whether you are entering into a contract involving residential real estate, commercial real estate or some other type of property exchange, an attorney will be able to oversee the process and navigate the complex maze of regulations required to complete the transaction. For commercial properties, an attorney may also be able to assist in obtaining your tax ID number, pertinent licenses and other important business-related documentation.
Of course, hiring a real estate attorney is not required. Without one, however, it’s important to understand that the chance of costly errors and delays significantly increases, as does the chance of being sued. To protect personal or business investment, enlisting the help of an experienced legal professional is strongly recommended.