An Article by Michalis Economides, Advocate & Legal Consultant | CEO of Chambersfield Economides Kranos Law firm
Article Publication: Forbes Magazine June 2019
There are many cases where investors, real estate agents and construction companies have questioned whether a real estate agreement requires the appointment and supervision of a professional lawyer.
Even more times we heard that the contract is only typical and meets the basic requirements of the law or that the contract is standard, follows a specific pattern and does not require any change.
A contract, even when the transaction appears simple and straightforward, does not cease to be the most important document of the transaction, as it defines the rights of the parties involved and the appropriate actions on how to resolve various disputes that may arise. Additionally, a proper and careful contract limits all possible risks and prevents uncertainties, which could lead to disagreements.
As an international law firm that frequently deals with multiple and complex real estate transactions, we have unfortunately encountered many cases in which investors and service companies did not pay the necessary attention to the sales contract to cover all the chances of any dispute before, during and after the transfer of the real estate property, resulting in unpleasant and serious consequences that could only be solved through court actions.
Owning a property is a long-term and significant investment because of the large amounts involved. Therefore, investors, sellers and buyers, have to follow the appropriate procedures as defined by the legislative framework, during the closure of an agreement, in order to safeguard their interests.
On the other hand, real estate agents, construction companies, as well as land development companies, should safeguard their rights in order to avoid adverse consequences that may arise during the closure of the agreement, i.e. cancellations, financial problems etc.
Therefore, appointing an experienced law firm is absolutely necessary because, as legal advisors and knowledgeable legal practitioners, they can secure the benefits of the involved parties and propose the insertion, deletion or modification of terms that, in case of a disagreement, will determine what has been agreed. Additionally, the law firm will ensure that the contract is fully compliant with the provisions of the law governing the terms and conditions of the transaction in question.
Additionally, law firms often act and provide escrow services for the implementation of real estate contracts. In these cases, the law firm provides the “escrow service” as a third party. This service works in between the transaction and the law firm oversees its smooth flow. Typically, this service is offered in cases where investors come from a different country than the provider. However, this service is also used in cases where all the parties involved are from the same country.
Moreover, legal advisors are able to advise the investors, sellers or buyers on the strategy needed to be followed in their dealings with real estate transactions and purchases. The real estate market, which will be incorporated into the investors’ portfolio of real estate, is very important and influenced by various factors that determine its future value. Let’s not forget that every investor wants to increase its income flow. The main factors to be considered for each investment transaction of this type are the location, future use, tax system, the reliability of the real estate provider and the resale strategy for the property.
Taking everything into consideration, I would like to highlight that, by appointing an experienced law firm, investors, buyers, sellers and involved providers, secure their rights when signing the contract and are fully informed about the legislative framework and the practical part governs the purchase and sale of real estate.