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CostHelper > Personal Finance  > Real Estate > Real Estate Contract Review

Real Estate Contract Review Cost


How Much Does a Real Estate Contract Review Cost?

 
low costLow: Reviewing a Standard Contract Can Start $100-$250high costHigh: Assistance Throughout a Purchase Can Run $500-$1,500
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A real estate leasing or sales contract is a legally binding (and often complex) document which dictates the rights and responsibilities of all parties involved, including who pays for what, and what happens if something goes wrong. Having an attorney review the contract before you sign may prevent disputes or surprises later on.

Typical costs:

  • An attorney will typically charge an hourly rate of $200-$500 or more to review real estate contracts. Reviewing a standard two-page lease typically takes about 30 minutes, or $100-$250; longer and more complex documents will cost considerably more, depending on complexity and length -- including attachments, some contracts can be 100-200 pages.
  • An attorney may charge either a flat fee or an hourly rate to guide you through the major steps of the process of buying or selling a home, including attending the closing and reviewing all paperwork. (In some states, only a lawyer is allowed to prepare the home purchase documents, perform a title search and close the sale.) Costs for these legal services run about $500-$1,500 for an average house, according to LendingTree.com.
Related articles: Eviction, Fighting Eviction, Landlord-Tenant Dispute

What should be included:
  • Basically your attorney will verify that the contract and its terms are clear and legally enforceable, explain the technical terms to you, and suggest possible improvements. But a lawyer isn't always needed; Nolo Press lists reasons to hire a real estate attorney.
  • In reviewing the contract, your attorney is your advocate, looking for clauses that might cause problems for you later on or suggesting options that favor your interests. A contract drafted by attorneys representing a landlord, housing developer or home seller may include terms that are more beneficial to the other party than they are to you. A New Jersey man lost the $15,000 deposit he made on a new home because he couldn't sell his existing house and the purchase contract (provided by the home builder) didn't have a contingency clause.
  • If you need to sign a contract before you can meet with a lawyer, write in the phrase "Subject to approval by buyer's/seller's attorney," then see a lawyer as soon as possible.
Shopping for a real estate contract review:
  • Be prepared to meet with the attorney; read through the lease or sales contract, and make notes on anything you don't understand and want the lawyer to explain. Lawyers.com explains how to prepare to meet[1] with a real estate attorney.
  • Referrals to real estate attorneys are available through Lawyers.com[2] and FindLaw.com[3] .
  • Your attorney should provide you with a written fee agreement. If the lawyer is billing on an hourly basis, make sure you understand what's included and what the final cost is likely to be.
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What People Are Paying - Recent Comments
Best CT contract review firm
Amount: $600.00 total
Posted by: Jessica Flanders in West Haven, CT.Posted: March 30th, 2010 09:03AM
Law Firm: The Funk Legal GroupFee Per Hour: $150.00
My husband and I wanted to sell our small business to our niece. We searched for a firm that can help us and we were referred to The Funk Legal Group. After we sold our business, we got to say we were amazed how affordable and professional thier services were. Not only they spoken to my husband and I regarding what paperwork is going to be involved, but they also coordinated with our Accountant and our real estate broker to make our sale of our business very sucessful!. I recommend The Funk Legal Firm to anyone.
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External Resources:
  1.  real-estate.lawyers.com/residential-real-estate/Preparing-to-Meet-with-a-Real-Estate-La...
  2.  www.lawyers.com/real-estate/find-law-firms-by-location/
  3.  lawyers.findlaw.com/lawyer/practice/Real-Estate-Law
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