By Vernon B. Hearn
You’ve spent months looking online, driving around your favourite neighbourhoods and wandering through Sunday afternoon open houses … and you’ve finally found your dream home.
No matter if you’re buying that home through a professional realtor or as a private sale, a real estate lawyer is a key player in making your dream a reality.
“Buying a house should be a happy experience, and we want the process to be as smooth as possible while still protecting our client’s interests,” explains Vern Hearn with Burchell MacDougall’s Truro office, “Once you’ve made the decision to buy, our goal is to get you into your new home.”
While using a realtor is ideal, Vern notes that the market is moving increasingly towards private sales.
“Realtors are the professionals who direct the traffic and put out the fires, and they do add value,” he says, “But the market has really changed over the past few years. Today, I would estimate that one-third of our residential real estate deals are private sales.”
With a private sale, “you can get close but you can’t close without a real estate lawyer,” Vern goes on, “You’ll get to a point in the process where you wonder ‘What do we do now?’ And that’s when you call Burchell MacDougall.”
Whether you’re buying or selling, the role of your real estate lawyer is to protect your interests during the course of the sale. The real estate law team at Burchell MacDougall has decades of experience, and the expertise to make the huge undertaking of buying a home as efficient as possible.
“We ask the questions you may not know, or may be too excited about the sale, to ask,” he explains, “We make sure the i’s are dotted and the t’s are crossed so your deal passes muster at the bank and gets accepted.”
“Banks have become more stringent when deciding whether or not a transaction will be approved for financing. And so a properly drafted agreement is needed to address matters that might become a roadblock to completing your deal.”
Your lawyer looks after important details like title searches and makes sure conditions, such as inspections, water tests and insurance, are included in your agreement.
And if you’re privately selling a home, your real estate lawyer can also manage offers for you. “Imagine receiving three offers for your home in one day,” Vern describes, “It’s overwhelming. But we can review and talk you through them, and help you make the decision that’s right for you.”
While the market is trending to private sales, buying or selling a house isn’t a completely do-it-yourself process.
“Your real estate lawyer makes the process a bit less intimidating, and helps you realize your real estate goal … a successful sale or a new home.”
This article is for information only and is not intended to be legal advice. If you have any questions or would like further information, you should consult a lawyer. Or spend an afternoon at Jimolly’s Café and wait for Vern to make an appearance.