Buying a house is serious business and can shape the next few decades of your life. Some people spend plenty of time debating with themselves on whether they should hire a real estate agent or a real estate lawyer when buying a house. Let’s start by considering costs.
Real estate agents earn commissions or fixed rates from the seller when they sell a property. While it may be true that the seller pays for the commission, some people can’t help but wonder if the cost was actually passed onto them.
On the other hand, real estate agents don’t charge much as a lawyer does. Some even call it exorbitant rates. In several cases, however, a lawyer is necessary to push forward.
Aside from price considerations, there are plenty of other things you should consider. Here are things that should be factored in when making your decision.
Information on agents
- Agents are familiar with the usual details and usual steps in a typical real estate transaction. When dealing with unusual circumstances, you will need a lawyer to step in. Agents have an incentive to push the deal while a lawyer will watch out for your better interests.
- Never use the seller’s agent as there is bias and it might end with the seller getting a more advantageous deal.
- Agents can give you more control of the process by scanning the listings, giving you more options, and viewing the houses and showing you those that match your criteria.
- Agents know the market value of similar homes and can advise you in your home search.
When you need a lawyer
- Each state has its own set of real estate laws. In some states, an agent handles all tasks involved in preparing a home purchase contract but other states only allow a lawyer to prepare home purchase documents or do a title search, and close the deal.
- A real estate lawyer can be expensive and can charge heavy fees. However, there may be times that you need to hire one. This usually happens when there are legal issues that makes you wonder if your plans are feasible. There may be other issues with regards to the house you are considering. A real estate attorney can dig into matters and determine if there are problems.
- Real estate agents are paid on a commission basis which results in a built-in conflict of interest. A real estate lawyer real estate lawyer typically charges by the hour, sometimes ranging from $150 to $350. Sometimes you may need to hire an attorney for specific tasks and depending on the job and the schedule, you maybe be able to negotiate a fixed rate. Never forget to record your agreement in writing.
In short, a real estate agent and a lawyer have their own jurisdiction. Hiring a lawyer will free you of any potential risk as they ensure the deal will not be problematic for you and a real estate agent will work with you to find your ideal home.
Robert Aronov & Associates, PC 88-02 136th St, Jamaica, NY 11418 (718) 206-1555 http://www.realestatelawyernys.com