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Scrutinise the fine print on real estate transactions

Homeowners in Alberta who want to list their homes for sale through a real estate agent surely want to avoid being rushed into signing any documents. Real estate transactions involve written agreements that will be legally binding once both parties have signed them. A signed listing agreement with a brokerage firm gives the company and its sales person the right to represent the homeowner in marketing and selling the property.

The seller will want to be familiar with the contents of any legal agreement. The contract must contain both the effective and the expiration date of the agreement along with the services the brokerage firm undertakes to provide. Furthermore, the contract must show the fees payable and the commission structure along with how payment will be made.

Before signing, the homeowner will want to make sure that the agent will provide the best possible service. Clarifying expectations and needs can prevent misunderstandings later. At the same time, the seller can benefit from learning the expectations and needs of the sales agent and brokerage firm.

Making errors in real estate transactions can have devastating consequences. It is imperative that the seller understands everything and gets answers to all questions. Real estate agents may not provide legal advice, and for that reason, many Alberta residents retain the services of an experienced real estate lawyer when they buy or sell real estate property. Having a seasoned lawyer scrutinise all documents before they are signed may prevent situations that may require even more costly representation if litigation becomes necessary.

Source: reco.on.ca, "Listing/selling representation agreements: understanding the fine-print", Accessed on Dec. 17, 2016

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