Real Estate Attorney vs. Title Company: What’s the difference?

Posted: March 15, 2019 11:54 am



Among title company functions are:

  1. Title searches, certifying the title (ownership) is legitimate and free of encumbrances.
  2. Title insurance, protecting lender or owner against lawsuits or claims that might arise from problems a title search can’t uncover, including forged deeds, missing heirs or clerical errors.
  3. Acting as agent for the parties in closing: maintaining escrow accounts, getting documents signed, collecting & distributing money and filing documents with the authorities.

Among real estate attorney functions are:

  1. Advice concerning zoning limitations, covenants (such as in condo communities or homeowners’ associations), taxes and other subjects.
  2. Drafting documents — leases and sales contracts, among others.
  3. Representation in court, should that be necessary.


Why Choose a Real Estate Attorney?

  1. The title company doesn’t work for the buyer or the seller. A real estate attorney, like James Vendetti, works for you. Title companies do their jobs very well, but once a transaction is completed, they are out of the picture. You employ a real estate attorney to guard your best interest and advocate for you. Should problems arise, a real estate attorney will be in your corner.
  2. Title agents can’t provide legal advice. When problems or questions arise, the title company will call a lawyer. Why not cut out the middle-man and have someone on your team who knows the transaction from beginning to end, as well as you do? This can be especially valuable when it isn’t a home, but a rental property or other business location with additional legal requirements and tax issues.
  3. Title agents can create a basic sales contract, but they stop there. If the contract needs an addendum, if issues arise in the contract, if non-standard forms are involved or in any of a thousand other circumstances, your attorneys can deal with issues immediately — issues which may delay closing or sink the transaction like the iceberg sank the Titanic.
  4. Costs are essentially the same. Many closing costs — insurance premiums, documentary stamps, and recording fees are set by state law. If there’s no real difference in the price, why not pay the price that gets you more services. A law firm trained in real estate procedures can perform all the duties of a title agent, meaning you may actually save money.


Cover Your Bases with a Single Hit

Contact Vendetti Real Estate Legal Services, the full-service firm for Erie, Pennsylvania, and surrounding areas. Whether you’re buying or selling, C. James Vendetti, Esq., and his staff know Pennsylvania real estate law and can smooth the way in virtually any real estate transaction.