If there is anything certain in life, it's that things won't go as planned. This is even more true during a real estate transaction.
Any number of last-minute issues can pop up before you can close on the sale of your home. A real estate agent can help you navigate many of them, but not all. That's where a real estate closing attorney comes in handy.
Sometimes legal issues with the sale can be quite complicated and you need an expert in the law to sort it out. While real estate agents know a lot about real estate law, they aren't experts. Closing attorneys are.
Let's take a look at five reasons why hiring a house closing attorney is a good idea.
1. Give Your Agent a Wingman
Want to maximize your profit on your home sale? Negotiations are where that happens. An expert negotiator can make sure that you come out ahead at the negotiation table.
What’s better than a fantastic real estate agent who is a great negotiator?
Two great negotiators.
When you hire a closing attorney to help with your home sale, they can back up your agent during negotiations. Is the buyer objecting about something the inspector found? Your dynamic duo can work to show that it’s not a big enough deal to affect the sale.
Failing that, they may have to negotiate a repair credit or lower sale price. But rest assured that you’ll get the best deal possible.
2. You Have a Complicated Situation
Some real estate transactions show signs from the start that they will turn into complicated legal matters. These include situations where:
- The house you're selling is from a trust
- You’re selling the house because of a divorce
- You're selling the house to a family member
- The house has liens or judgements on it
- There are tenants living in the house
Hiring a lawyer right from the start ensures that these situations don't turn into major problems. It’s the lawyer’s job to foresee problems and avoid them or be ready with the proper response.
3. Help With the Purchase Agreement
Purchase agreements are complicated, there’s no getting around it. There are contingencies, deadlines, and every tiny little detail of the transaction is spelled out in the agreement.
The attorney can not only ensure that all those details are spelled out correctly, but also make sure you don’t miss anything. Missing deadlines or failing to fulfill an obligation can leave you open for legal trouble or even a lawsuit later on.
In many transactions, standard forms are used to draft the purchase agreement. What if your situation is unique? The purchase agreement needs to be customized and perfectly tailored to your needs. The closing attorney will handle this and ensure it’s legal validity.
4. Review the Paperwork
What if you don't have a complicated sale situation? Should you still consider hiring a lawyer?
Something as simple as mistakes in the wording of the documents could lead to a huge legal headache. A closing attorney’s job is to carefully read through the document and ensure that all the terminology is correct and clearly stated.
This can also give you peace of mind as a seller. You may have heard horror stories of lawsuits being brought against sellers after the sale of their home. An iron-clad contract and proof that you fulfilled your obligations can save you from having to pay thousands of dollars in damages to the buyer.
5. Review the Fees
If you’ve never sold a home before, you may feel overwhelmed by the sheer number of fees that pop up. From commissions to your mortgage balance to repairs credits and costs to insurance and taxes, there are plenty of fees that will eat into your profits.
What if someone makes a mistake and you end up forking over several thousand dollars unnecessarily? What if you never know about that mistake but the possibility keeps haunting you long after the deal is done?
A closing attorney will carefully check all the fees that you’re required to pay for validity and accuracy. This right here can be worth the price you pay for their services. On top of that, you can rest easy knowing you didn’t get taken to the cleaners.
A House Closing Attorney Is Invaluable
All this to say, hiring a house closing attorney is a good idea in any real estate transaction. You never know what kind of legal problems could crop up.
If you have a closing attorney on board, they can help you to avoid those problems altogether or take them in stride and handle the proceedings to end up in your favor. When you’re talking about hundreds of thousands of dollars changing hands, you can’t be too careful.
Wondering where you’ll get the money to pay for their services? Well you were probably already planning on paying the standard 3% commission to your real estate agent. When you find your agent through Clever you’ll pay a flat $3,000 listing fee on homes up to $350,000. If your home sells for more than that, you’ll still only pay 1% of the sale price.
The savings should leave you with plenty of extra money to hire a closing attorney and still have some left over. To learn more about listing your home with a full-service Clever Partner Agent, contact us today!