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Buying or Selling a Home/closing cost and hiring attorney

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Question
Hi, Sharon: I am SELLING my house in Georgia by myself. A potential buyer called, saying she was ready to submit an offer. In addition, she would pay closing costs.  My questions are: 1. besides the cost of hiring an attorney, what other costs should normally be paid by a seller? 2. It is not so necessary for a seller to hire an attorney as a buyer, for the former has nothing to lose when he has received the funds. Is that correct? 3. What's the price range for hiring a real estate attorney?
Thank you in advance!

Answer
Hi Aaron,
1.  If you don't have a Realtor, this is why you should have a Real Estate Attorney (One who specializes in Real Estate).  Realtors use the GAR (Georgia Association of Realtors) contracts which have been developed over the years to protect both the Buyers and the Sellers in real estate transactions.  If you do not personally have an attorney representing you, then that attorney is representing the Seller and doing what is best for them.  The costs can be paid by either party depending on what the contract says specifically which is why you want to control the contract.  Since you are the Seller, the more items the Buyer pays, the better for you. If the Buyer presents you with a contract, you do not have to accept it as is.  Remember you can make a Counter Offer, which is why you need a Realtor or a Real Estate Attorney to guide you.  A one size fits all Contract Form that you buy at an office supply store won't do you justice.
2. No, see Number 1.
3. Even within Georgia prices can vary but probably ~$300 - $500.

Aaron, Good Luck with your sale and please obtain guidance.  Real Estate sales can be pitfalls for the uneducated and uninformed, both Buyer and Seller.  

Buying or Selling a Home

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Sharon Huneycutt, Realtor, Associate Broker, GRI, e-PRO

Expertise

A lot of people who want to move to the mountains don't really realize what it might involve. For instance, here in North Georgia, if you want a mountain view, you may have to drive up very steep roads. Will you have well water (That's usually good!)? Do you speak septic tanks? Have you considered that if you want really want to get away from it all, you'll do it on a gravel road? What's difference between a Log home and a Log Sided home? How can I tell? Who takes care of the house when you're not there? Where can you stay to check it out? This is a very popular area for second homes and investment properties or when you finally decide to get way from it all, I can find your perfect property. I can answer questions on North Georgia Mountain living, housing, land, amenities, and activities. We handle a lot of foreclosed properties in our office so I have become a Certified REO Specialist. REO means Real Estate Owned and is the industry name for a Foreclosure. It refers to "owned by a bank or other corporate entity". If it involves an area of expertise I don't have, I can probably tell you what kind of an expert you do need.

Experience

We've had property in the Ellijay area for over 10 years. My husband, who is a Civil Engineer and Appraiser, and I built our own log home. We researched log homes and North Georgia for three years before choosing Ellijay. Because of the building experience and being married to an engineer/appraiser, my real estate experience is a bit more extensive than average. I also am an education freak believing that the more you know, the better off you are. My husband and I both like photography, so we drive and hike all over the mountains looking for pictures.

Education/Credentials
MHA, CMA, Licensed Realtor, Associate Broker, e-PRO, GRI, Certified REO Specialist. Realtors are required to have 24 hours of continuing education every 4 years. In the last three years, I have 180 hours so far!

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