Home Selling in Brooklyn>Question Details

atan787, Home Owner in Brewster, NY

I have a buyer for my coop apartment who is paying cash. Mortgage already paid off. We also agreed to split the entire closing cost 50-50.

Asked by atan787, Brewster, NY Thu Mar 14, 2013

Do we have to get separate attorneys or can we just hire one to complete this transaction. Or can we use the Coop's attorney if they agree?

Help the community by answering this question:


You will both need separate attorneys, regardless your agreement....
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 15, 2013
Dear Atan:

I agree that it is nice to be able to save on the closing cost by "sharing" an attorney, and I agree that the deal looks straightforward given the cash buyer and the fact that you no longer have a mortgage either.

In terms of the real-life handling of real estate deals, I have never heard of buyers and sellers sharing attorneys. Frankly, I do not know if it legally possible. Even if it is possible - keep in mind that if there is a sudden glitch in this transaction - whom will the attorney represent - you or the buyer?

The goal of hiring an attorney is to have him or her represent you throughout the transaction, to the point when you leave the closing with a check, and possibly beyond this point, if necessary. That is why I highly recommend that you hire your own attorney. If you wish - you can try to negotiate the attorney fee based on the relative simplicity and certainty of this transaction (no mortgages on both sides), IMHO.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Mar 16, 2013
Dear atan 787:

It is possible. You should speak to the co-op attorney and see if he or she would be open minded to it. If not you can speak to your own attorney and go over it. The attorney will probably want you to sign a disclosure that he or she had "advised you that it would be in your best interest to have your own attorney but contrary to their advise you elected not to hire your own attorney." Many attorneys will not even entertain such an idea out of fear of being sued for malpractice, but it can happen.

On a similar note, it would probably be in your best interest and the buyer's best interests to have your own attorneys representing each of you. This way you will each have someone protecting your best interests and making sure everything is as it should be. The security is worth the added expense.

Are you sure you are getting the highest price? If you like I can give you an estimate of your co-ops value and I may even have a another buyer for you if you run into any problem with your existing buyer.

If I can be of further assistance please contact me direct. Good luck!

Mitchell S. Feldman
Associate Broker/ Director of Sales
Madison Estates & Properties, Inc.
Office: (718) 645-1665/ Cell: (917) 805-0783
Email: MitchellSFeldman@aol.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 15, 2013
The attorney really is representing one of their clients, and when clients agreeing personally or not, are on opposing sides, i.e. one is the seller and one is the buyer, it seems to me unethical for an attorney to represent both, that is like the district attorney accusing , but also being the defender on behalf of the
accused. The attorney fees are really not that big of an amount .... there is more work involved for the
attoney on the seller's side so the fee may be slightly different...

Good Luck, it is nice though that the two parties were agreeable, nice to see.
Good Luck to you

Sincerely yours,
Edith YourRealtor4Life & Chicago, North Shore & Northern Illinois Expert
Working always in the very BEST interest of her clients, Buyers, Sellers and
Investors alike....And always with a SMILE :)

Covering for @Properties Chicago & suburbs, and with her trusted Partner
Agents US & world wide properties. French, German, some Spanish &more EdithSellsHomes@atproperties.com or EdithSellsHomes@gmail.com
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0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 15, 2013
I don't believe any attorney can or will ethically represent both of you. If you find one who will, do not use him/her for either one of you...you will be laying the fiundation for overturning the transaction based on someine's rights not being represented.

Happy to recommend my attorney, Darren Sheehan...call/e me for info.

Gail@Gladstone GroupRealty.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 15, 2013
If you are both in agreeance and the attorny understands this and has both of your best interests at hand... Why not? Sounds like a great 2 for 1 deal to me.

Luke Constantino
(212) 300-3919
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 15, 2013
Hi Atan - remember the coop attorney is looking out for the coop..I would suggest that if you
both agree that you at least get one attorney for the two of you. at least it appears that somebody
is looking out for you. Remember penny-wise-pound foolish. Any attorney usually only charges
$1200.00. Better safe than sorry. Good Luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 14, 2013
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