When to Hire a Real Estate Attorney?

real estate attorney

One of the most common questions many home buyers or sellers ask is — when to hire a real estate attorney. When it comes to buying a property, it should always be handled with extreme caution and due diligence. Thus, it is one of the biggest investments of your life. A buyer and seller must understand the intricate transactions involved. 

Whether you’re planning to consult a real estate attorney and how they may help you make the process easier and legally binding, you should know what are the common reasons you need a real estate lawyer.

State Requirements

Each state has slightly different laws governing real estate transactions. Some states require certain actions during the closing process. These rules typically prevent real estate agents from acting in a legal capacity for which they are not authorized or trained.

Preparing legal paperwork for a property for sale requires legally binding actions and licensing. Some states also consider closing a house an act of practicing law, in which case an attorney may be needed to be present.

Real Estate Broker is Not Involved

A real estate attorney can help you organize your paperwork, make sure the title is clear, and assist you with the fine print of the transaction. Even though an FSBO or “for sale by owner” arrangement can save you money on real estate commissions, you still need someone to create the purchase agreement, deed, and other documentation.

You Don’t Have a Licensed Agent

When you hire a lawyer, your lawyer works exclusively for you and will ensure that your interests are protected. When you make an offer on a home without the assistance of a real estate agent, the seller’s agent might offer to handle everything. This is known as “dual agency,” and it can lead to problems because one agent cannot truly look out for the best interests of both you and the seller. When the chips are down, their loyalties will likely be with the seller.

Something is Wrong with the Property or the Agreement

These could involve arguments over boundaries, easements, rights of way, or other matters pertaining to the land the residence is on. In the event that the property is the subject of foreclosure or other legal action, or if you have a disagreement with the buyer or seller, you might also require legal counsel. If someone threatens to sue you, you should always speak with a lawyer.

You’re Worried About How it Will Affect Your Taxes

If the property has value appreciation, the seller may be subject to capital gains. In the event that you are the buyer, you might be eligible to write off your property tax, home office expenditures, and mortgage interest. You will need to file taxes on your rental income and expenses if you intend to rent the property. How your house sold or purchased will impact your tax return might be explained by a CPA or attorney.

Ensure Closing Transactions

The mortgage, title insurance, the deed, and the final inspection are some of the many moving components that make up the closing process. It might be a tremendous weight off your shoulders to hire a lawyer to examine, amend, and prepare any closing paperwork and make sure they are safeguarding you and your assets. To guarantee the highest degree of comfort and openness, you should retain legal counsel early in your real estate transaction to examine all contracts and agreements and to help with negotiations.

Legal Dispute Resolution

If handled incorrectly, issues involving residential and commercial property can easily spiral out of control and end up being an excessively costly matter. It is best to always speak with a real estate attorney if a disagreement arises during or after a transaction in order to minimize these dangers.

It will be simpler to create and follow the appropriate methods for resolving these disagreements if you have legal representation. By ensuring that all issues are resolved, a skilled real estate lawyer will also help you reduce the likelihood that similar difficulties may arise in the future.

Save You time

In a real estate transaction, timing is everything. You have to make sure all the formalities are taken care of without taking too long to process the paperwork and draft a lease or purchase agreement. In addition to ensuring a successful resolution, a real estate attorney can help expedite these procedures and save you time.

Peace of Mind

Having a real estate lawyer on your side can be very helpful if you have a feeling that anything might go wrong, are unsure about all the legal aspects when buying a home, or just want to be sure all your bases are covered. Having a competent legal expert gives you the assurance that, in the unlikely event that something goes wrong, you have someone on your side who can guide you through a difficult scenario.

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What is the Average Cost of Hiring a Real Estate Attorney?

If you trust the other parties and the transaction is very straightforward, you might not need to hire a separate lawyer. If the deal is complicated or highly valued, you should seriously think about when to hire a real estate attorney. The money you save in legal fees will be more than compensated for trying to avoid expenses, stress, and future problems.

Fixed hourly rate

Depending on your location and the lawyer’s level of experience, you may expect to pay between $150 and $350 per hour for real estate legal services.

Fixed-rate for specific services

Depending on the services they offer, they might also impose a flat fee. For instance, the cost of a home closing may be between $500 and $1,500 for a real estate lawyer. The price at which the subject property is sold may also have an impact on their fees.


Throughout the real estate buying process, a real estate lawyer will represent your interests, act for you, and conduct negotiations on your behalf. Purchasing a property can be a bit daunting and complex, and it’s crucial to educate yourself on the many aspects of the procedure. If you’re looking to buy or sell a property, our experienced real estate broker can help and guide you throughout the process. Contact us today.