Buying a home is a huge financial decision. As such, it is best done with the help of professionals who knows the ins and outs of home buying and will iron out any possible issue that may come along. The professionals that can serve this role are usually real estate agents and real estate lawyers, so which one should you work with?
It is best to note that the services provided by a real estate agent and a real estate lawyer may overlap at some point but they do not do the exact same thing says Oakville lawyer Malerie Rose of Rose Family Law. In Ontario, only a real estate agent is allowed to buy and sell real estate on behalf of sellers and buyers, while a real estate lawyer provides legal services that deals with real estate. Both professionals have a duty to ensure that their client’s best interests are protected when buying or selling real estate.
Do You Really Need A Real Estate Lawyer?
Because the specific responsibilities of a real estate agent and a real estate lawyer are different enough from each other, having a real estate agent does not mean that you don’t need a real estate lawyer. While your agent can represent you as a buyer or as a seller, your real estate lawyer can focus on the legal aspect of the sale such as reviewing the conditions, waivers, and the Agreement of Purchase and Sale along with other related documents to make sure that the transaction will be legally completed. Aside from reviewing documents, your real estate lawyer can determine whether your rights and wishes are protected enough and can draw up a new agreement that’s adjusted to meet your needs.
Other lawyer tasks include:
- Advising you on zoning issues
- Arranging for the orderly transfer of payment and commission to the right individuals
- Identifying if there are work orders or liens on the property
- Checking the property title to make sure that the legitimate owner is selling the property
- Providing buyers with the keys to the property after closing
- Registering the transfer of the property on the provincial land titles registry
- Reviewing condo status certificates (when applicable)
- Taking deposit funds and placing the funds in their trust accounts pending closing
Do You Really Need a Real Estate Agent?
As for hiring a real estate agent, note that real estate agent services include:
- Acting as your representative
- Booking showings and facilitating them
- Referring you to needed contractors such as home inspectors
- Preparing a report on comparative analysis of similar properties
- Scouting or creating new listings
Seeing the above, it is clear that you will benefit from hiring the services of both real estate lawyers and agents when selling or buying a home. Fees typically vary by region, the value of the property, or by commission basis.