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Lara McHenry, Real Estate Pro in Spokane, WA

What are the benefits of using a Realtor versus hiring an attorney to write up a contract for purchase.?

Asked by Lara McHenry, Spokane, WA Sat Dec 8, 2007

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7
Hi Lara,

In answer to your Q........ My answer is predicated upon an assumption of a full service Realtor.

A Realtor is guided by a motivation to happily place a buyer in a property, or help a seller achieve highest and best, and gain the confidence of these clients insomuch that they will refer other potential clients. An attorney is guided by a goal of legal protection of the contract terms of the transaction, and that protection is limited to "sight unseen."

BUYERS.... A Realtor will make recommendations for a buyer that helps them weigh the benefits and drawbacks of one property vs. another. A Realtor will advise of area facts of which the buyer may be unaware that could help a buyer in their purchase decision. i.e. A planned discontiuation of ferry service, a widening of street, etc. An attorney can only protect a client from that which the attorney is made aware. i.e. A Realtor may notice and address such items as the swing set in the yard, does it stay or go? A Realtor may notice water stains in a basement and ask the seller to disclose his/her knowledge on the matter. A Realtor brings a set of experienced eyes to the transaction and a desire for a buyer to end up in the right property, The contract forms that Realtors use have been approved by thier local state boards and assoications. An attorney pays keen attention to the legal terms of the contract.

SELLERS.... A Realtor is motivated to achieve a contract with the highest and best terms on behalf of the seller. The Realtor will visually inspect a property and ask questions about what he/she sees that result in recommendations. Realtors help sellers provide full disclosure by prompting discussions and asking questions as a result of their hands-on physical visits to a property. Example: A Realtor might notice a past water stain in a baement and inquire. This might result in a seller providing disclsoure about past moisture problems and the corrective action taken. The seller may have had no intent to withhold info, but mgiht have overlooked this. Just one example. The Realtor is able to provide feedback to the seller about pricing, current activity levels,and comps, which will guide the seller in his/her decisions. An attoney keeps a keen eye on the terms of the contract, but has little input for the seller if the price accepted was in the best interests of the seller.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 8, 2007
Daniel, aren't you motivated by how much you get paid at your job? Just because realtors are "motivated" by the money they make doesn't mean they won't work for their clients. I work twice as hard because I know the money I make. Some of your statements are false - it does not cost much to work with a realtor as a buyer. In my case, It will not cost my buyers ANYTHING to work with me. As for the sellers, they pay my commission because I advertise their home to make sure it sells in a timely manner. This means that I take money out of my OWN pocket to do this. I never seek the highest price for the property because it won't appraise. I seek the appropriate number that will appraise and what my buyer's will pay. Please do not put all realtors in one category. Most of them ACTUALLY care about their customers.
Flag Fri Sep 5, 2014
Realtors are motivated by their commission to seek the highest price for a property with no regard for what the client ends up paying. A typical case at $200,000 with two agents at 3% means $12,000 out of both the seller's and buyer's pockets. That is a huge price to pay while the value is nowhere near that amount. An attorney would have to work 80 hours to make $12,000. Realtors are antiquated. The internet has replaced MLS binders which were once exclusive to agents.
Flag Sun Nov 10, 2013
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Red Bank, NJ
MVP'08
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I asked this question, for other Realtors to be able to point out the differences and share this with the public...so why the thumbs down. We are here to help educate the public about Real Estate and I thought this might help many sellers and buyers as well as for sale by owners to hear the voices of Professionals on this matter.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 8, 2007
Hi Lara,

I have seen a lot of controversy on Trulia about Realtors asking Q. I have seen Realtors pose a Q such as yours and heard other Pros criticize, stating, "Why is someone asking a Q when they should know the answer? Frankly, I think you asked a good Q, and gave you TU on both the Q and your post. My position is that Trulia is a place for consumers, and content rules. Who asks the Q is less important, at least, at this time. Perhaps when Voices grows to a point that there is much strength in the consumer participation, there will be a natural progression that has fewer Pros posting Q. For now, I see it as content rules, and Voices is stil in it's infancy.

I have also seen Pros post Q that do have no benefit for a consumer. While I won't TD those Q, and can actually say I have found a few of those threads interesting and informatiive. Despite my personal enjoyment of those types of threads, I still believe this is a consumer site, and that the Q posted by Pros should be guided accordingly.

If there were a Pros only area, I would have posted this comment there. In order to communicate it to other Pros and, even for consumer comment, it appears here.

Deborah
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 8, 2007
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Red Bank, NJ
MVP'08
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A realtor writes a contract a whole lot faster than most attorneys. They use a standard contract, which results in fewer disagreements over the contract. The longer it takes to get the contract written up, the more likely that the deal will flounder.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 8, 2007
If an attorney is a real estate attorney and a buyer want s him or her to write a sales contract for them there is no problem with that . But an attorney may not do the inspections necessary or the negotiations that a real estate person would do.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 8, 2007
An attorney is in the position to counsel you on legal matters. Their expertise is not in the real estate market. A Realtor is in the position to counsel you on matters of real estate. Either of them can write a contract. If all you want is a contract take your pick. If you want council on prices etc. Use a realtor.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 9, 2007
The biggest difference....the seller pays the commission got the buyers agent. If the buyer hires an attorney, the buyer pays fortheir own legal counsel.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 8, 2007
Cindi Hagley…, Real Estate Pro in San Ramon, CA
MVP'08
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