A common question surrounding real estate and architect agreements is: How do I protect myself? Standard real estate or architectural agreements are not always fair to both sides. Typically, they include language that protects one party over another. In addition, contracts can be confusing and difficult to negotiate. The goal before signing any agreement is to make sure all parties are covered equally.
Some ways to protect yourself when engaging in a real estate or architectural agreement include:
1 - Ask an Attorney!
Before signing any type of contract, you should always have your trusted real estate attorney review it first. An experienced lawyer will know what to look for to protect your interests and guide you in the safest direction possible. A real estate attorney can also identify problems before they become larger issues.
Some clauses within the agreement may seem harmless on the surface, but they may actually result in substantial financial losses if a problem arises later. Your real estate lawyer can identify these clauses and help protect you before it’s too late.
2 - Do Not Agree to Waive Claims
If the other party does not fight you on it, never agree to waive claims against real estate agents. You want the flexibility to take whatever legal action you can if something goes wrong. Therefore, it is important to keep your options open when signing legal agreements.
3 - Do Not Shorten the Timeline
If you can avoid it, never shorten the time that you can file a claim in an architectural agreement; you have no idea how long it may take for a problem that requires legal action to reveal itself. Give yourself as much time as possible that the other party will allow.
4 - Consider Attorney’s Fees
You might also consider whether attorney’s fees for the prevailing party are something you want to include or not. If you become the defendant, you may not want to pay someone else’s lawyer fees, but if you are the one bringing legal action, you would want them included. Consider the larger picture and what makes the most sense for you and your situation.
Where to Turn for Help
Any legal contract, especially real estate and architectural agreements, can quickly become complex and stressful. You may not be aware of what to look for or how to adequately protect yourself. That is why it is crucial to ask for professional help. Contact Spiritus Law before signing any contractual agreement so we can help protect your interests.