YOU ASK:

What value does a real estate lawyer add on top of title insurance?

WE ANSWER:

You can try to close a real estate transaction by yourself but hiring a real estate lawyer will prove to be money well spent. A lawyer will provide real value, even if you already are covered with title insurance.

A real estate lawyer will help you look at the offer and ensure that your rights as a buyer are protected and that there is a clear definition of the duties and responsibilities of all parties concerned. Lawyers can render professional opinion and they are also insured in case they make mistakes in providing you advice.

A lawyer will also help you make sure that the title is clear. If there are clouds in the title, he will also help you move to clear those and to ensure that the deal is closed with your interests in mind. Thus, if the seller already gives you an offer to a house or property, don't sign anything yet before you ask a lawyer's opinion!

Aside from helping you prepare the necessary legal documents, the lawyer will also:

  • Provide you with advice as to the purchase contract, and what instruments you need to use to take title on the property.
  • Ensure that there are no liens or encumbrances that are recorded against the property. The lawyer will also make sure that there aren't any issues that will prevent you from making proper and complete use of your property.
  • Register legal documents at the right venue.
  • Examine any taxes outstanding, utilities unpaid and any other adjustments before the transaction is closed.
  • Take a look at the documents you will sign to see that everything is in order.
  • Ensure that the ownership of the property is transferred to you, and that you are only subject to the liabilities that you have agreed upon with the seller.

The lawyer will also help you take out title insurance on the property.

With all the things that the lawyer will help you with, the legal costs will surely be well worth it.

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