Legal Services are an Essential Part of Our Total Service Program

The owner of ThinkSmart Realty, Michael Samuels, received his law degree from Harvard Law School in 1985, and practiced real estate law full-time for 11 years before creating ThinkSmart Realty. He has continued to practice real estate law on behalf of all ThinkSmart clients since 1995.

Services Provided–Included in $3,000 Flat Fee

  1. Professional, legal drafting of all documents.
  2. Professional, legal review of all documents.
  3. Drafting of ancillary legal documents like deeds, powers of attorney, resolutions, etc.
  4. Review of deed for accuracy.
  5. Review of title policy.
  6. Resolution of legal issues as they arise
  7. Whatever else is needed, other than litigation.

Other legal services, like creating a corporate entity, or filing and prosecuting a tax appeal, are available at additional charge.

The Benefits of Having a Lawyer When Selling a Home

Would you like to have a real estate attorney rather than a layperson draft your contract involving such a huge asset? In general, if a legal issue arises, do you want an agent that understands the issue, and can knowledgeably help resolve it, rather than having to consult another lawyer or have a layperson make a mistake? Some examples of where our legal expertise has saved our clients:

 

OMG. No Child Care Center Allowed.

Our buyer came to closing to buy vacant land to build a child care center. The title policy had an exception for a restrictive covenant. We insisted that the title company go to the courthouse and show us the covenant. It said nothing could be built unless approved by “Joe Smith.” That meant our client might not be able to build the center. We delayed closing until Mr. Smith could be located and convinced to waive the covenant. Without knowledgeable review of the title policy, it would have been disastrous. A lay agent can’t do this.

I Don’t Want Your Damn Addendum!

On the day of closing there was a roof leak. Not good. Seller agreed to pay to fix it post-closing. Buyer’s agent proposed an addendum to the original contract to memorialize the agreement. We insisted on a separate agreement instead. After closing, buyer’s roofer claimed that there was another area of the roof that had been inadequately repaired. Had we used an addendum rather than a separate agreement, Seller may have had to spend an additional $3500 to handle that issue. Because it was a separate agreement, he didn’t. Technical, but crucial.

Sorry, That’s Not What the Law Says

The loan officer, a few days before closing, claimed that we couldn’t close because the seller’s deed was recorded less than 90 days before signing the sales contract, and there’s a HUD prohibition on that. We researched the law and showed that it was the date of the closing, not the date of recording, that was operative–therefore, the 90 days had passed. We closed on time. The deal would have been delayed 45 days if we hadn’t shown the loan officer his mistake, and the buyer would have moved on.

Bad Form

The Cincinnati Area Board of Realtors has generic forms to cover various situations. We understand the law and can create clauses tailored to the particular situation. An example is the form for sales contingent upon the buyers selling their own house. There are many ways to cover it, not just the two forms available to realtors from the Board. In fact, these Board forms are lousy in Michael’s opinion.

BOTTOM LINE: STUFF HAPPENS. IT’S NICE TO BE ABLE TO FIX IT.