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What does an attorney do that a real estate agent can’t?

On Behalf of | Sep 3, 2021 | Real Estate Transactions |

The purchase of your new home is a major commitment. Not only does it involve a lot of money, but it also requires the exchange of a considerable amount of paperwork between you and the seller. Both an attorney and a real estate agent can help you with your real estate transaction. However, there are certain things that an attorney can do but a real estate agent can’t.

Drafting a customized contract

Real estate agents are valuable because they know how to identify defects in the property, negotiate repairs and close contracts. However, most real estate agents use contract templates. A real estate attorney can create one from scratch according to your best interests.

Knowledge of the law

Real estate agents can’t give legal advice, and they might not be able to provide you with different alternatives to buy your house. For example, an attorney could advise you on the different ways you could hold your house’s title. Additionally, an attorney could explain to you the exact terms of the contract and make sure they are not ambiguous to avoid a future dispute.

Carrying out the process

You can hire a real estate attorney in all the steps of the process, from the drafting to the closing of the contract. The moment you hire an attorney will depend on your needs and the property you are going to buy or sell. Some situations in which you might need an attorney in a real estate transaction are:

  • You buy a house that is in an estate sale, short sale or auction
  • You buy a house from the bank
  • You buy a house in another estate
  • You sell property in divorce proceedings
  • You sell property that is part of an estate for which you are in charge
  • You sell a house with many liens

As a real estate agent, an attorney can also help you negotiate repairs and other needed adjustments with the seller.

Legal help

You don’t need to hire an attorney to buy property in Pennsylvania. However, you may benefit from doing so. An attorney could help you will all the heavy paperwork and represent your best interests in the process. That way, you can reduce your chances of having an issue with the property in the future.