The Most Common Reasons To Need A Real Estate LawyerJul 20 2017
For most people, purchasing a home is often one of the largest single transactions they will make in their lives. If you are contemplating home ownership, you should consider obtaining the services of an experienced real estate lawyer.
Even though a legal professional isn’t required by law when buying or selling a home, a real estate lawyer will help the process go smoothly, educate you on the buying and selling process, protect your interests and ensure the transaction follows real estate rules and regulations.
Real Estate Risks
Even for seasoned buyers, purchasing real estate comes with risks. A person might use a false identity, pretending that he or she is the owner of a property. Once the property goes through the closing process, the person takes the money and runs, leaving you without a house.
Another ruse is to sell the same property in one transaction right after another — usually on the same day or within a couple of days. This is done to inflate the price of the property in a false manner. In some cases, the appraisal will catch this but, if a buyer is willing to put up a significant amount of cash, he or she could end up paying more for a home than it is worth.
If you retain a real estate lawyer early enough, they may be able to help mitigate these and other risks in buying a home.
When You Absolutely Need Professional Advice
Whether your first purchase or your tenth, you should retain a lawyer if you are buying or selling property with certain issues, including but not limited to:
- Buying or selling property that is in some state of distress. This might include structural problems, sink hole issues, lawsuits involving the property and zoning issues.
- Buying or selling a property from the estate of a deceased owner. A lawyer will ensure that the property has been properly probated and that the executor or heir has the right to sell it.
- Selling a house with a non-cooperative partner.
- Based on knowledge you have about the property you are selling, if you think something could go wrong, you should bring in a lawyer.
- Selling property that you think might have judgments or liens against it.
Several types of contract issues may arise prior to closing. The seller may try to back out of a signed contract or may not have disclosed certain information that could affect the value and/or sale of the property.
You may also need to back out of a contract for other reasons, including the inability to obtain financing; the property does not appraise for what you or the seller thought it would be worth; the survey shows that the property is not what the seller is selling; or neighbouring buildings or easements may be interfering with the buyer’s enjoyment of the property.
If you are purchasing or selling real estate for the first time, or if you are not comfortable with the process of buying or selling, it’s recommended that you enlist the services of a professional real estate lawyer to help you navigate your way through the transaction.
- Realtor.com — Do I Need a Real Estate Attorney to Sell My House?
- LandThink — What does a real-estate lawyer do for a seller?
- Nolo — Buying a New York Home? Roles Your Attorney and Real Estate Agent Will Play
- Real Estate Council of BC — Buying a Home in British Columbia
- Government of BC — Buying & Selling Property
- The Canadian Bar Association — Buying a House