What to Look for in Reputable Property Lawyers
Not sure what to look for in reputable property lawyers? This article outlines three essential criteria to look for – reputation and reviews, good communication, and knowledge and experience. Many property lawyers will claim to be reputable, but you need to test out this claim by doing a little bit of your own research. Read on to find out more.
Reputation and Reviews
When it comes to property lawyers, you want to choose the ones with the best possible reputation. But how do you establish the reputation of property lawyers? First of all, do an online search for the company name and make sure there haven’t been any public scandals in association with them. By contrast, you may dig up some positive press on the company during this exercise, which should be duly noted. Next, look up a third-party review site and see what kind of reviews past and present customers are currently leaving for them. This will fill in a lot of the picture for you. You can also try online forums for consumer products and services and get opinions there. You should also keep in mind your own intuition about certain property lawyers when you meet with them, as gut feelings rarely lie.
You can tell if property lawyers have good communication from the moment you walk into their office. Do they greet you with a welcoming smile and look you in the eyes? Or are they on the phone to another client, expecting you to wait? Are they late, or on time? These things can say volumes before they’ve even spoken a word to you. When you do finally speak with each other, you need to find out how flexible they are with communication. Can they meet your needs? For your part, you need to be able to express how you wish to be communicated with – via phone, text or email, and how many times a day or week? Getting these preliminary boundaries in place before you start working together will make for smoother sailing. In your free or low cost initial session, bring along some technical questions and note how they explain the answer to you – do they speak in plain English or indecipherable legalese?
Knowledge and Experience
Property lawyers can have a lot of experience, but if their knowledge isn’t specific to the type of property you’re buying, it could be irrelevant. When you speak with property lawyers, ask them about the areas where their experience lies. When it comes to property, you often want quite specific knowledge, such as knowledge of property in the area where you wish to buy or sell. Are you thinking of dealing with commercial or residential property? Do they deal with both? For how many years have they been working in this area of law? Ask if they have case studies that show how they’ve helped other people with similar legal issues to yours. Ask plenty of questions about their experience in the first session you have with them, until you feel satisfied that they have the knowledge to help you.