Those of us from “back East” are accustomed to having lawyers assist with any real estate transaction. But things are different in Arizona. Buyers and Sellers are told that it is not necessary to hire an attorney. It is urged that attorneys are seldom needed because Title Companies do all of the necessary work.
All of this is true. It has been our practice for decades. But is this a good practice? Most real estate transactions go smoothly. A few do not. If your transaction is one of the few, who will be looking out for you? Your real estate agent? The title company?
Look at the documents you are asked to sign. These are “standard forms” prepared by lawyers for realtors and title companies. They contain release language protecting the realtors and the title companies. Title companies customarily disclaim all responsibility.
Although you have been told that lawyers are not necessary, the real estate documents you are asked to sign tell a different story. They recite that you have been advised to seek the advice of an attorney. Why is this? It is to protect the realtor in the event the transaction goes badly and you are damaged.
It gets worse. Realtors can represent both buyer and seller. This is an obvious conflict of interest and will usually be disclosed to you in another standard form that you are asked to sign. If there is a problem, you are left wondering who your realtor is really representing. Sometimes there is little doubt that it is not you.
Real estate transactions are common, but they are not simple. Large sums of money are involved so a mistake can be costly. Realtors, buyers, sellers, lenders, and title companies are all involved. Large numbers of documents are generated. It is easy to become overwhelmed.
Retaining counsel to advise you can be invaluable. Your attorney is loyal only to you. Your lawyer will answer your questions, explain the process and will be there with solutions if problems arise. Having representation levels the playing field. You are no longer alone.
Our Partners have been investing in Arizona Real Estate since the 70’s. We can help you through most transactions–residential or commercial, sale or lease. Come in and speak with us about the facts of your transaction and let us show you how we can help.