Law Offices of Gerard F. Lane
Established 1959

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Real Estate

Why hire an attorney



Do I need my own attorney when selling or purchasing a home? 


      -     This is an all-to-frequently asked question. 


            Reasonable people recognize that commercial real estate transactions require attorneys for all parties.  Yet that being the case, wouldn’t residential real estate transactions demand the same rational precaution? 

Put another way, in contrast to the commercial setting, how many properties does a person purchase or sell in one's lifetime?  Moreover, in the scope of time and investment, is any personal transaction greater than the purchase/sale of one’s home?  

-     Not likely. 


The purchase or sale of a home is most likely the largest financial transaction that any of us will ever enter into.  Yet many chose to go it alone, or worse to go into it thinking the bank’s attorney or the real estate broker is looking out for their best interests. 


            The fact is that the bank’s attorney is looking out for the bank and the real estate broker is looking out for his/her commission. 


            So, who looks out for you? 


We do.






When to hire an attorney


            As soon as you decide to purchase or sell a property it is time to hire your attorney.  The process begins almost immediately and each step has legal repercussions.  You do not have your own representation until you hire your own attorney.  The sooner we are involved in this complex process, the better. 





Why hire us


            Although we represent each of our clients as "real estate" attorneys, we are also fully prepared to litigate should it becomes necessary.  Most real estate attorneys are not litigators.  While 99% of real estate transactions go off without a hitch, it is for the 1% that do not that our clients have been thankful to have specifically hired us.  

            As the examples below demonstrate, having a seasoned litigator in your corner is a definite plus when it comes to negotiating for and purchasing or selling real estate.  The mere threat of litigation to a buyer/seller, real estate broker, lender, title examiner or even a real estate attorney can indeed be intimidating, yet for a seasoned litigator courtroom drama is just another day at the office. 


            With the Law Offices of Gerard F. Lane you get the full spectrum of legal service and representation, and that is what often sets us apart from the competition.





Representation by the
Law Offices of Gerard F. Lane



So you want to buy/sell a home.  Following is a summary of the process:



            The legal process of purchasing or selling residential real estate begins with the signing of an "Offer to Purchase" and continues through several phases and events and the execution of multiple legal documents, ultimately ending with the "Closing" on the property, at the conclusion of which you become the owner of (or have sold) your property.


            In most cases the process is one of cooperation between Buyer and Seller, and it proceeds smoothly.  Occasionally however there are "bumps" in the road and those are the times when it is imperative that you have your own legal representation.  It has been proven consistently that the worst-case scenarios develop when a party to the transaction does not have representation from the initial moments of the transaction, but rather retains legal counsel when it is too late, or not at all. 


            Often, difficult matters, conflicts of "deal-ending" proportions, and at times even litigation result from mistakes made prior to the Closing that would have been readily avoided with competent legal review and advice in the initial stages of the transaction.   


            In short, it is clearly worthwhile to spend a few dollars up-front to hopefully avoid spending a great deal of money at a later time.  The Law Offices of Gerard F. Lane have been hired to represent clients both before and after disaster has struck, and we can easily state that it is preferable to take the appropriate legal steps and precautions up front for a small fee, than to spend a lot more money on the back-end trying to fix mistakes that should never have been made.





Our Experience


The Law Offices of Gerard F. Lane have acted as attorneys for both Buyers and Sellers of Residential and Commercial Real Estate.  In addition to being experienced as a real estate attorney, Gerard F. Lane II is also a licensed Massachusetts Real Estate Broker, license #140799, and he has worked in the mortgage and banking industries.  Thus, Attorney Lane has a unique perspective on the various other professionals involved in your transaction.  







 When things go wrong


            Further, as just a modest sample of the transactions in which we have had to intervene as litigators, we offer the following:


·        Represented Buyer of Real Estate investment property where Seller sought to pull out of sale after Offer to Purchase was signed but before Purchase and Sale was executed.  Outcome – We enforced the Offer to Purchase.

·        Represented Buyer of Real Estate who was prepared to Close but Lender did not have paperwork in order.  Outcome – Lender picked up costs of delay including hotel costs, storage, and lost wages.

·        Represented Buyer of Real Estate prepared to Close where Seller had not timely evicted tenant.  Outcome – Stopped Sale at Closing.  Buyer’s full deposit returned.  Buyer purchased different property several months later.

·        Represented Seller of Real Estate where Buyer pulled out of sale day before the scheduled Closing.  Outcome – Settled case pretrial for full amount of deposit money, which was retained by Seller.






Our Contract with you



            The Law Offices of Gerard F. Lane’s standard fee for representation of a residential real estate client is a flat fee of $700.00 for all events from the initial Offer through the Closing.  Generally, we expect to spend a minimum of six and as much as ten hours in this type of work, and our standard billing rate is $200.00 per hour.  Thus our flat fee is financially favorable to the client over an hourly billing contract.


            Commercial real estate transactions are individually priced, depending on the nature and size of the transaction and the needs of the client.



            If you would like to be represented in your purchase of real estate in Massachusetts, please feel free to contact the Law Offices of Gerard F. Lane at your earliest convenience. 

We look forward to serving your needs.

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