Before we begin, we need to point out that in North Carolina, an attorney will be the settlement agent in any real estate transaction. That is an easier way of saying that if you choose to buy a home in this state, you will need to have an attorney. Other states, such as Illinois, allow you to forego legal representation. With that said, the point of this article is not to convince you to contact a real estate attorney when you buy a house because you don’t have a choice. However, we want to highlight how an attorney will protect you during one of the most significant financial decisions you will ever make.
What is a Settlement Agent?
Settlement agents are third parties that exist in addition to the buyer and the seller. In North Carolina, the settlement agent will be an attorney. Regarding a real estate transaction, the settlement agent will:
Search and certify the property’s title
Prorate expenses such as property taxes for the upcoming year
Oversee the transfer of ownership between the buyer and seller
The Benefit of Having an Attorney
When you have a real estate attorney, you will receive two fundamental things:
An advocate to see that the terms of the contract are fulfilled
A knowledgeable professional for advice and guidance
After you are under contract on a home in North Carolina, reach out and obtain a real estate attorney. Once you have an attorney who agrees to represent you, send them a copy of the sales contract. They will read it and ensure that both parties meet the terms before closing. Additionally, your lawyer will perform a title search on your home. We will discuss the importance of title insurance in the future, but for now, you need to know that they are verifying the title is clear. In other words, the seller legally owns the property and has the right to sell it to you. Has anyone ever tried to sell a home they don’t own to the buyer's detriment? Yes, and your attorney will not allow that to happen.
Contact the Real Estate Attorneys at Benbow, Davidson & Martin, P.C.
When you work with the established real estate attorneys at Benbow, Davidson & Martin, P.C., we will review every loan document, record the deed, and ensure you are protected throughout the transaction. Don’t make the biggest financial decision of your life without us supporting and assisting you. Contact us today to schedule your consultation.