- Often attorney representation for a buyer or seller begins with contract review
- A real estate attorney should be recommended to all clients to review a contract prior to entering into it if the client has questions or is at all concerned about the contents of the contract
- Special areas of review include: FAR/BAR contract, and what form, due diligence period and dates noted, financing contingencies, time period to close, close review of any and all addendums
- Following contract review it may be necessary for a real estate attorney to further negotiate the terms of a given contract for purchase and sale on behalf of your client
- Scope here can be quite broad
RESOLUTION OF DISPUTES
- Once your client is under contract, a myriad of disputes can arise that an attorney can assist with so that the transaction closes
- Real estate attorneys will advocate for their client’s best interest but seek to be deal makers, not deal breakers whenever possible
- Common disputes include: requests for repairs under an as is contract, post or pre-occupancy agreement and details with regard to these, inventory items to remain with the property, issues that arise during the walk through or inspection, extending time periods within the contract for further due diligence or financing, and details surrounding release and cancellation of a contract and return of an escrow deposit
- Often an attorney for a given client will act as that client’s escrow agent.
- It is important to confirm the buyer’s consent as to who will be acting as escrow agent when the contract is prepared.
- The escrow agent can be a title company or brokerage as well but often if a client has an attorney they will ask that their attorney holds escrow for them until the closing.
- Most attorneys representing a seller will act as closing agent and issue title insurance for the sale.
- Attorneys issuing title insurance as a closing agent will issue title insurance at the promulgated rate, just like a title company.
- It is important to speak with your client and with the attorney at the beginning of the transaction before sending a contract to a closing agent and confirm that the party who is paying title insurance (usually the seller in Indian River County) has agreed to the proposed closing agent if the contract allows the party paying for title insurance to select the closing agent.
- If your client is working with an attorney and is a seller, if the attorney is also the closing agent, his or her office will prepare all of the closing documents.
- If your client is working with an attorney and is a buyer, the attorney will review all closing documents prepared by the closing agent and must give his or her consent for the closing agent to disburse following review of the closing documents.
- An attorney representing a buyer or seller may also prepare or assist and review with preparation of addendums and pre and post occupancy lease agreements as are necessary
ADDED “CHECK & BALANCE”
- Overall an attorney representing your client as either a buyer or seller is an added check and balance for your client’s entire transaction.
- The existence of an attorney I often find makes many agents at ease as questions that clients often pose to the agent, that may or may not be within the realm of the agent’s role can be relayed to the attorney.
The presence of an attorney can relieve an agent from many burdens of the transaction that would otherwise fall to the agent to sort out.
- The attorney acts as a second set of eyes for all document review and can also assist in giving the client the confidence he or she needs to close the deal.
Unlike a title company, a real estate attorney can negotiate and advocate for the client in a given transaction
- We get many calls and questions about attorney’s fees for closing representation and contract review.
- There is not a set formula in my office, or set flat fee schedule. I offer a free telephone or in person consultation and will quote the client a flat fee for my firm’s services once I or my staff has spoken with them. I want to quote a fair fee to the client and for the firm therefore we take the time on the front end to speak to a prospective client before quoting fees for our services.
- If you have a client that has requested an attorney for closing, we would be delighted to speak to your client and will then be in a position to quote them a fair flat fee for the services requested.
SCOPE OF CLOSING REPRESENTATION SERVICES
- At the Law Offices of Jennifer D. Peshke, P.A. we provide full residential closing services including:
- Contract review and preparation
- Deed and lease review and preparation
- Buyer residential purchase representation
- Seller residential sale representation including closing agent services and full title insurance services
- Short sale buyer or seller representation and negotiation
- REO residential buyer representation
I am happy to answer any questions anyone may have at this time
Thank you for your time today!
Law Offices of Jennifer D. Peshke, P.A.