I have been practicing law for over 30 years and I know how stressful it is to buy or sell a home. It involves a lot of money, and a great deal is at stake. The key is to surround yourself with professionals who know what they are doing and who care about your interests.
There are many attorneys who can handle real estate transactions, but what is the biggest gripe I hear from clients?? I can't get a hold of my attorney and they never return my phone calls. It's really incredible how attorneys ignore this aspect of their practice, but they do and it's really frustrating for their clients. So, this gets me back to my initial comment about stress and how to navigate this process in a way that minimizes stress, not create more stress. And the last thing you want if for your relationship with your attorney to be a stress CREATOR. That's not good. You want your attorney to be a stress REDUCER!
Knowing this to be an issue with all our clients, we offer an app called Case Status that allows you to see in real time right on your cell phone the status of your transaction, beginning with the intake process, through attorney review, into the inspection phase, drafting the conveyance documents and preparing for the closing. We have developed a comprehensive checklist of the various “stages” of a real estate transaction that tracks your particular transaction and tells you in real time where things stand at any given moment. This checklist is used by us internally and is shared with you (the client). Your realtor can also see the stage of the transaction online and communicate with us using the messaging feature, so our office and you (and your realtor) are always in sync. This allows for complete transparency and accountability and eliminates the endless waiting around just to get an update. Gone are the days of trying to track down your attorney, waiting for a reply and wondering what the heck is happening!
Think about it. You can set your credit card to text you every time you incur a charge or to see your balance, but your lawyer cannot proactively notify you as soon as the deposit was made in your deal, or the buyer's repair credit demand was accepted by the seller, or the mortgage contingency has been satisfied - - all critical phases of your transaction that you should know? Does that make any sense? Surely the technology is available to make this happen, but lawyers have been laggers in incorporating this type of technology. . . that is until now!
As you consider the attorney you wish to represent you, the legal fee and cost are important factors no doubt, buy beyond that, think about the experience (those few months you will need to navigate before your dream home becomes a reality) and how you would like to be treated and respected as a valued client.