If you are buying or selling a home in the state of Missouri, you may be feeling overwhelmed or unsure of which step to take next. The stakes are high when you are spending hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars and it is important to take all necessary precautions in order to ensure that your investment is sound. Many people will refer you to real estate agents and insist that you speak with a lawyer when they learn that you are buying or selling a home. It can be hard to see past the dollar signs that this advice will cost, and you may be wondering what guidance and professional assistance are really necessary and what can you do without. It is important to understand that real estate lawyers and real estate attorneys play different and important roles in the sale and acquisition of property. By understanding how each can help and what services they provide, you can hopefully make an educated and informed decision about what makes sense for you.
Do I Need a Real Estate Agent in Missouri?
While Missouri law does not require buyers or sellers to work with licensed real estate agents (think of “for sale by owner” signs), the vast majority of people will choose to do so. Although real estate agents generally charge a 5-6% commission fee (the exact rate can be negotiated in the initial purchase agreement), most buyers and sellers find that the services provided by these agents far outweigh the costs. For instance, many sellers do not have the time or connections to track down interested buyers, show their homes, and negotiate offers on their own. Without the help of a selling agent, they may never be able to secure a buyer for their home. Buying agents also generally have exclusive listings and can help you to see and access homes that would otherwise not be available to you. These are services that are not provided by a real estate lawyer.
Do I Need a Real Estate Lawyer in Missouri?
Like real estate agents, real estate lawyers are also not required to be utilized in the process of buying or selling a home under Missouri law. It is interesting to note, though, that in many states this is not the case, and a lawyer is required to oversee certain aspects of purchase or sale. Many people would also never consider making such a large investment without the help of a lawyer to ensure that it is sound. A lawyer can negotiate and prepare the purchase or sale agreements and can perform due diligence to make sure that the title to the property is free and clear and has no liens on it that could negatively affect its value or your ownership rights. Many times in Missouri people do not think to contact a lawyer until something goes wrong, but working with a lawyer from the start or having them review your purchase or sale documents can prevent legal disasters later on.
Schedule a Consultation With the Johnson Law Firm
If you are buying or selling property in Missouri, the experienced real estate lawyers at the Johnson Law Firm are ready to help you ensure that your investment is secure. Contact the Johnson Law Firm today to schedule a consultation.