Practice Area: Real Estate
Real Estate Lawyer
Not only is buying and selling a home a substantial financial burden, every property transaction is also ripe with pitfalls an untrained eye often has trouble seeing.
This is one of the many reasons why you need an excellent real estate lawyer. Others include helping you negotiate the deal, overseeing the transaction, and helping you settle a dispute between any of the parties involved.
What Is a Real Estate Lawyer? - An Overview
In many states, having a real estate lawyer present is mandatory when closing the deal, even though this is actually not the case in Florida. However, it’s still a good idea for one to be present to ensure that your best interests are taken into consideration.
By reviewing all the paperwork ahead of time, a real estate lawyer can help you spot any potential issues before they arise. Depending on the arrangement you make, you will either be charged a flat rate or by the hour.
The Responsibilities of a Real Estate Lawyer
Once hired, a real estate lawyer will oversee any transactions pertaining to the home sale and see to it that everything goes according to plan. Even though buying and selling a home does not involve any legal proceedings, it is still necessary to review the documents before they are signed.
- Title documents
- Transfer documents
- Purchase agreements
- Mortgage documents
- Documents received from the lender
- Agreement made with the seller
A real estate attorney may be involved in other aspects of the home sale, such as title searches and title insurance. Moreover, you should consider hiring one to double check the property’s history to ensure there are no outstanding claims against it.
If you need someone to verify and document the transfer of funds, a real estate lawyer can also assist you in this regard. In case a dispute or disagreement arises during the buying and selling process, you will likely require one to get it resolved, whether you’re the buyer or the seller.
Another role of a real estate attorney is to advise you on the tax considerations of a home sale, which is something neither the buyers nor the sellers are typically equipped with the knowledge necessary to handle.
Ask yourself this:
- Who’s going to step in when the other party involved tries to back out of the deal they’ve already signed?
- Who’s going to make sure the repair costs are covered?
- And, above all, who’s going to double-check the contract covers everything it should and that the terms are favorable?
Don’t take on any unnecessary risk. Hire a real estate lawyer instead.
How Can I Find a Real Estate Lawyer Near Me?
A home sale typically involves a large sum of money changing hands, so looking for a real estate lawyer near me is the recommended route to take to ensure that everything goes smoothly and that you avoid all the common pitfalls when buying and selling a home.
There are a couple of ways to find a suitable candidate. Try to:
- Check out the customer review sites. This will give you a detailed insight into what real estate attorneys are present in your area and highlight some of the best ones. You will also get a rough idea of how much they’ll charge you and what their areas of specialization are.
- Ask your friends and family members for recommendations. Word of mouth marketing goes a long way and you might get some good referrals this way. Apart from that, you will also get to learn what their experience was like firsthand.
- Google away! Google’s algorithm places a great deal of importance on relevance and can help set you up with a highly rated real estate lawyer in Florida.
Should You Hire a Real Estate Attorney?
Although Florida is one of the states that does not require a real estate attorney to be present when closing the home sale, there are several benefits to hiring one.
- Making sure the terms of the contract are favorable
- Checking the property has no outstanding claims against it
- Settling a dispute in case one arises
- Ironing out any tax considerations pertaining to the property transaction
- Verifying the transfer of funds
- Conducting title searches
Below, you’ll find some real estate buying and selling situations that often arise in practice and how a real estate attorney can help:
Having to put together a legally-binding document
Unless you’re trained and educated to draft a legally-binding agreement, you’re much better off leaving the job to a real estate attorney. After all, these are the people who have the legal background to ensure that everything is in order from a legal standpoint and that your rights are protected.
When contractual issues arise
In practice, it sometimes happens that one contractual party tries to back out of a signed contract or other contractual issues may arise. A real estate lawyer will act as a mediator to settle the dispute between the contractual parties.
You’re busy with other matters
Everyone has a busy schedule full of responsibilities and they can’t be expected to be there every step of the way. In addition, you’re looking for peace of mind, knowing that the property transaction will go smoothly and there will be no roadblocks in the way.
Having a legal professional by your side will give you the confidence necessary to pull through even if you get entangled in a dispute or another sort of complicated situation.
Frequently Asked Questions For Real Estate Lawyers
Since you want to entrust the legal aspects of a property transaction to a trustworthy legal advisory, these are some common questions you should consider asking before inking the deal:
Can a Real Estate Attorney Represent Both of the Parties Involved?
In short, no. A real estate attorney can represent either the buyer or the seller of the property, but not both. The reason being is that doing so would create a conflict of interest. By working for one party exclusively, this ensures their best interests are honored. The only exception to this is when the other party hires another attorney from the same law firm, but under no circumstances can it be the same person.
What Is Your Background and Experience?
You’re looking for ways to make sure that the real estate lawyer in question has the necessary background and experience gained from situations and legal disputes similar to yours. This way, you will know they have the knowledge on how to proceed if complications arise. Ideally, you’re looking for someone who specializes in real estate law (or even deeper, such as in property transaction matters exclusively), even though a general type of attorney could be up to the task. The question is, do you want to risk it on someone who may lack the experience necessary to secure the desired result? To find the most suitable legal professional, always review your unique circumstances and ask yourself what kind of services you require.
Do You Charge for the Initial Consultation?
While in most cases the initial consultation will be free of charge, a real estate lawyer may opt to charge a modest fee for it, so it’s best to ask. Ask them whether your physical presence is required or if the consultation can take place over the phone or online. To ensure their time (and yours) is spent in the most efficient manner, it’s recommended to prepare your list of questions in advance. After you’ve exhausted the list, you will be able to assess whether the real estate attorney you’re considering hiring is the right fit for you. At Liberty Law, your initial consultation is always free.
Can You Share Your Results and Credentials?
A real estate lawyer who’s worth their salt will not be shy about flaunting their credentials and prior achievements. Typically, they will tell you all about it on their website. What you should be on the lookout for is a consistent flow of results when working with clients who are in a similar position to yours. You may also want to double-check their claims against another publicly accessible database. This will confirm the validity of their achievements and rule out any potential disciplinary issues. While there are certain red flags, keep in mind that not all violations have the same degree of severity.
Do you feel there’s something we haven’t covered? Get in touch with Liberty Law – we’d be more than happy to answer your queries. If you’re ready for your free initial consultation, we invite you to schedule a call with one of our industry-leading real estate lawyers and let’s see how we can be of help.