Quantcast 5 Questions to Ask Your Real Estate Attorney |
5 Questions to Ask Your Real Estate Attorney

Selling your own home puts more of the sale price in your pocket, but you don’t want to scrimp when finding a professional to handle the property transfer. Choosing the right real estate attorney can turn a complex situation into a smooth transaction.

Instead of hiring the person who appears at the top of your real estate attorney internet search, take the time to interview a few attorneys in person and ask them these five questions:

1. What Percentage of Your ractice s Devoted to Real Estate Transactions?

According to David K. Blattner, an attorney based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, the number of years an attorney has practiced isn’t as important to homebuyers and sellers as their type of practice or specialty. “There are attorneys located on every street corner and in every office building and shopping center,” he says. “Most small firms and solo practitioners practice door law; whatever walks in the door, they handle. This practice doesn’t work well for real estate clients, particularly residential clients.”

Asking what percentage of an attorney’s practice is devoted to real estate transactions may give you a better idea of the attorney’s real estate experience.

2. What Is Your Fee, and What Does It Include?

Fees and services can vary, so make sure you know what your attorney will charge and what rate you’ll receive. As Gary M. Singer, an attorney based in Sunrise, Florida, notes, “There really is no standard. Every attorney is different.” You should also ask whether or not the fee is a fixed or time-based fee.

Some services include reviewing contract, loan and title commitments; searching for liens; handling title and closing documents; verifying charges are correct and fair; attending the closing; confirming the title company completed its job after the closing; and answering questions and addressing concerns.

“Most important is the ability to recognize when something is out of the ordinary and react to fix it,” says Singer.

3. What Value Do You ffer?

You can find standard forms online, and attorney Rick Davis, based in Leawood, Kansas, suggests asking what the attorney offers above and beyond what is readily available. “If the attorney is simply filling in blanks on the standard real estate forms, they’re not providing much value to the homeowner, as they could do the same thing or have it done by a title company, assuming there is one,” he says. “The problem with standard forms is they’re written for standard transactions, and for-sale-by-owner sales generally aren’t standard transactions.”

Special situations, such as seller financing or unique terms, aren’t always included. “Irrelevant terms increase the likelihood of ambiguity in the contract, which can result in later issues,” Davis says. “An experienced real estate attorney should have their own forms and language for the unique characteristics of an individual sale. If the sale is routine enough for a standard form, the homeowner likely doesn’t need to hire an attorney for the transaction.”

4. What Issues Might Arise efore losing?

Buyers and sellers should feel comfortable their attorney will be available when needed to resolve any difficulties that might arise.

“This might include disputes over repairs, resolution of title issues and appraisal issues,” says Blattner. “When possible, don’t sign the contract until you’ve hired your attorney and they’ve had the opportunity to review it and make suggestions to protect you and make the process easier.”

5. Will Anyone Else ork on My Case?

According to Bankrate, some law firms use junior attorneys or paralegals to complete some of the work, and if so, you should know this up front. During your consultation, ask to be introduced to anyone else who will handle your contract to make sure you’re comfortable with the person before proceeding.

The process of selling your own home shouldn’t be difficult, especially if you hire a real estate attorney to guide you along the way. Ask these questions to sort through and decide who’s the right professional to help you reach the end goal without worry, and visit Owners.com to get started today.

[cf]skyword_tracking_tag[/cf]

Homes near you:

42706 Keiller Ter
Ashburn, VA 20147 | 4 BEDS 4 BATHS | 2178 FT²
$569,000
42585 Sunset Ridge Sq
Ashburn, VA 20148 | 3 BEDS 3 BATHS
$424,900
19102 Dalton Points Pl
Leesburg, VA 20176 | 5 BEDS 5 BATHS | 10454 FT²
$799,000
42783 Cumulus Ter
Ashburn, VA 20148 | 4 BEDS 3 BATHS | 3920 FT²
$659,990
42779 Cumulus Ter
Ashburn, VA 20148 | 3 BEDS 3 BATHS | 5663 FT²
$659,990
42785 Cumulus Ter
Ashburn, VA 20148 | 3 BEDS 3 BATHS | 4356 FT²
$659,990
44197 Bristow Cir
Ashburn, VA 20147 | 5 BEDS 4 BATHS | 8712 FT²
$700,000
19132 Rocky Crest Ter
Leesburg, VA 20176 | 3 BEDS 4 BATHS | 1 FT²
$519,985
44122 Mistletoe Ter
Ashburn, VA 20147 | 3 BEDS 4 BATHS | 1742 FT²
$410,000
20431 Crescent Pointe Pl
Ashburn, VA 20147 | 2 BEDS 2 BATHS | 4792 FT²
$510,000
23245 Milltown Knoll Sq Unit 116
Ashburn, VA 20148 | 2 BEDS 3 BATHS
$412,995
20676 Pilate Sq
Ashburn, VA 20147 | 3 BEDS 3 BATHS
$399,900
20955 Duryea Ter
Ashburn, VA 20147 | 4 BEDS 3 BATHS | 2614 FT²
$465,000
43601 Dunhill Cup Sq
Ashburn, VA 20147 | 3 BEDS 3 BATHS | 4792 FT²
$539,990
22524 Ocean Cliff Sq
Ashburn, VA 20148 | 4 BEDS 4 BATHS | 1742 FT²
$599,000
20050 Old Line Terrace
Ashburn, VA 20148 | 3 BEDS 4 BATHS | 1628 FT²
$539,990
20666 Stillpond Ct
Ashburn, VA 20147 | 4 BEDS 4 BATHS | 11326 FT²
$674,900
20902 Laurel Leaf Ct
Ashburn, VA 20147 | 5 BEDS 4 BATHS | 10019 FT²
$709,907
19365 Cypress Ridge Ter Unit 418
Leesburg, VA 20176 | 2 BEDS 2 BATHS
$310,000
19385 Cypress Ridge Ter Unit 222
Leesburg, VA 20176 | 2 BEDS 2 BATHS
$235,000
19365 Cypress Ridge Ter Unit 809
Leesburg, VA 20176 | 3 BEDS 2 BATHS
$385,000
20882 Adams Mill Pl
Ashburn, VA 20147 | 3 BEDS 3 BATHS | 4792 FT²
$600,000
20437 Peckham St
Ashburn, VA 20147 | 5 BEDS 5 BATHS | 6534 FT²
$761,999
43210 Wild River Sq
Ashburn, VA 20148 | 4 BEDS 4 BATHS | 1742 FT²
$579,000

Don't miss a listing

Get the owners.com app today

People are also reading