Representing the Seller in a Real Estate Transaction, Get More Value for Your Dollar and Possibly Save Money
In Broward and Miami-Dade counties, the standard real estate contracts authorize the Buyer to select the closing agent. In most cases the Seller does not retain an attorney and relies on the Buyer selected closing agent to perform all closing related activities. The Seller does not usually consider the fee the closing agent will charge for the closing documents that the contract requires the Seller to provide. After the contract is signed and a few weeks before closing the closing agent will notify the Seller that they will prepare the contract required documents for between $595.00 and $795.00 on average. And that is all the Seller will get – documents.
What Seller’s or their real estate agents don’t realize is the benefit of hiring an attorney from Strock & Cohen Zipper Law Group to represent them in the transaction. First, our attorney prepares all of the Seller’s documents, so the closing agent does not charge that fee. What do our attorneys charge and what does the Seller go that fee? The charge is only $200 to $300.00 than they would by the Buyer’s title company. For that fee the Seller gets unlimited consults by phone or in person with the attorney, a review of the contract prior to (or after) it has been signed, review of any title requirements with explanation to Seller, negotiation of any repairs or requests for changes and credits, review of loan payoffs, estoppel letters and lien searches, and careful review of the closing statement to make sure the Seller is getting the full net proceeds they are entitled to. The Seller’s interests are being legally represented throughout the entire closing process.
Reviewing the closing statement by an attorney is essential to the Seller getting the full amount of the net proceeds of sale they are entitled to and a key part of attorney representation. In a majority of our firm’s Seller representations (I can’t speak of other law firms) our attorneys find mistakes in the calculation of the closing statement by title companies that do not favor the Seller. Most of these are honest mistakes but remember, the title company beholden to the party that refers them business.
The mistakes we find, combined with not paying the closing agent for the documents, usually saves the Seller more money than they have paid as our fee. And even if we don’t find such errors, the Seller enjoys the confidence that they have been represented throughout and that our attorneys have done everything to make sure the closing process was smooth, without stress, and was completed exactly as the contract contemplated. Remember, only experienced real estate attorneys can interpret contracts, give advice on such legal matters, and work efficiently to eliminate or reduce all of the problems that arise during the closing process.