By Jarryd M. Dalfino, Esquire
May 22, 2016
Home ownership. Whether a secluded ranch house, a millionaire’s mansion, a downtown condo, or the emblematic suburban house with a white picket fence, home ownership is a staple feature of the American dream. In order to achieve the dream of home ownership, the average American must make the single largest financial investment of their lives. For example, in Florida the average price of a home in 2016 is approximately $224,000. It simply cannot be overstated, the decision to proceed with a purchase or to “take a pass” is an incredibly important one. Given that purchasing a home or other real estate is such a large investment, it is worth considering hiring a Florida Real Estate Attorney to guide you through your next real estate purchase. Here are 4 reasons why you should choose a real estate lawyer:
1. The Contract. When you are looking to buy or sell real property in Florida, you will be required to use a written contract. These are typically provided by real estate agents, or if you are trying to sell by owner (“For Sale by Owner” or “FSBO” pronounced fizz-bow), perhaps you will find and attempt to use a contract you find on the internet. The contract is the “law” of your transaction, and as such, if something is missing, conflicting, or incorrect, there is a possibility for issues, a default, and even litigation. A typical contract form is a generalized document that is not tailor made specifically for your transaction. If your particular transaction involves complicated terms or facts, keep in mind that real estate agents and title companies are prohibited by law from drafting contracts, or giving legal advice to you. Only a licensed Florida Attorney has the authority to draft a contract tailored to your transactional needs, and give you legal advice regarding even the most “basic” contract form.
2. Experienced Legal Advice. Florida attorneys are licensed to provide opinions on legal issues, including explaining particular contract terms. Similar to the prohibition against real estate agents and title companies on drafting tailored contracts, they are further prohibited from providing their clients with explanations of contract terms and provisions, as this would constitute the unauthorized practice of law. Only a licensed Florida Attorney is trained, authorized, and licensed to provide legal opinions on the terms of your real estate contract.
3. Your Real Estate. When you are purchasing property, it is important to remember that you are contracting to purchase the underlying land, structures built on that land, subject to any and all encumbrances, restrictions, encroachments, and so on. All of these items are typically disclosed on a survey, title commitment, and other closing documents. If you do not hire an attorney to review title and survey for you, you must remember that you are expected to read, understand, and object to any title or survey issues. To the untrained eye, a title commitment or survey can be a landmine with devastating potential. A Florida Real Estate Attorney is trained and licensed to provide advice and legal opinions about the title to property you are acquiring, and evaluate and advise you about your survey. Hiring a Florida Real Estate Attorney review and advise you about your title commitment and survey for your next real estate may save you time, money, and problems down the road.
4. Economical. Many people are afraid to hire a lawyer because they fear getting a bill for thousands of dollars. If you choose an experienced Florida Real Estate Attorney, you will get timely, targeted advice for a reasonable fee. In almost all cases, you will at least know what range the fee will be in advance before you authorize your attorney to proceed with his or her involvement in the transaction.
For a helpful brochure with additional information on hiring a Florida Real Estate Lawyer, click on the link: http://goo.gl/S2n4sc. Wishing you great success!