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We are considering putting our home on the market for sale by owner in Colorado. Is it best to have a real estate attorney?

Brighton, CO |

How do realty attorneys charge to handle a for sale by owner in our area (Adams County, CO). Where can I get a list of attorneys available to assist us?

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Attorney answers 3


Typically a real estate lawyer will charge by the hour for services you need. The lawyer is not an agent and does not get paid a commission, and there really is no good way to deal with a contingent fee, so I would expect you would be paying by the hours or a flat fee arrangement. The lawyer could review your documents and make sure they are in order, and could help you negotiate a sale...although you probably will be contacted by a buyer's agent. If I were you I would talk to a title company. Using a competent real estate agent to represent you can make this a lot easier...although it does cost. Good luck!

This general response is not intended to be legal advice because I don't have all the facts. The particular facts in each instance will change the recommendation significantly. Any statements made in your posting on Avvo are not protected by the attorney-client privilege because they are shared with third parties. I require a written contract for legal services, so an attorney-client relationship may not be presumed merely by my response to an Avvo posting.


Best practice is always to have a real estate attorney and a broker working on your behalf. They understand the markets and can walk you through any issues that arise during the sale. However, If you want the hands on experience, but its your first sale, it is best to have at least one or the other on your side so you have someone to bounce ideas off. I recommend having a real estate attorney review the situation and give you an opinion on how he/she would be of help to you.



Complete the real estate course years ago and have sold 2 of my own homes in different states. We've only lived in Colorado for a couple of years so I would need someone to prepare the disclosure statement, look over documents and in other states they can actually handle closings. I don't know the rule here.

Adam James O'Rourke

Adam James O'Rourke


Certainly, if you would like to talk over some of the logistics I would be happy to discuss it with you. Give me a call early this coming week and we can get you covered. Have a great weekend.


If you are not interested in hiring a real estate broker who knows what they are doing, then you may need to hire a lawyer to handle whatever pieces of the process you cannot figure out for yourself. Generally, you will pay the attorney an hourly fee for whatever tasks you have them take over for you. Depending on how much of the process you are handling yourself, using an attorney may or may not be less expensive than having a real estate broker handle the transaction for you. One difference is that if the transaction doesn't close successfully you usually don't pay the broker. You will need to pay the attorney for the work they do whether or not your sale is completed.

Legally, the most important thing you need to do is to get a solid title company to handle the closing and provide title insurance. Colorado typically has tile companies rather than attorneys handle closings and most of your protection in the sale comes from the title work and title insurance.

You can reach Harkess & Salter LLC at (303) 531-5380 or Stephen Harkess is an attorney licensed in the state and federal courts of Colorado. This answer is for general information only and does not create an attorney client relationship between Stephen Harkess or Harkess & Salter LLC and any person. You should schedule a consultation with an attorney to discuss the specifics of your legal issues.

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