What is a Real Estate Attorney - For Investors | TRUIC (2024)

What is a real estate attorney, and how can they help investors? A real estate attorney is a lawyer specialized in legal matters related to properties. From vacant land to houses, apartments, and commercial real estate, a real estate attorney provides essential guidance for investors. Whether you’ve got an unclear title, want to form a partnership, or have tenants who don’t pay on time, a real estate attorney will clear the legal path.

Beyond that, an investor-friendly real estate attorney whose expertise aligns with your investing strategy will provide greater insight. Learn more about what a real estate attorney is and how working with one can secure your property and real estate investing business.

What is a Real Estate Attorney - For Investors | TRUIC (1)

What Is the Role of a Real Estate Attorney?

Generally, a real estate attorney will prepare and review all documents signed at the closing of a real estate transaction. They are often present at the closing to represent the investor’s interest, whether buying or selling. Since real estate law is governed by state and local jurisdictions, the real estate attorney will be able to advise you on important considerations specific to your locality.

State Requirements

Some states require a real estate attorney to supervise real estate transactions and be present at closing. Other states require an attorney to certify the property title.

Attorney Closing States (A real estate attorney must be present at the closing):

  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Georgia
  • Massachusetts
  • North Carolina
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • West Virginia

Attorney Title Opinion States (The attorney needs to certify the title):

  • Alabama
  • Louisiana
  • Mississippi
  • North Dakota
  • Oklahoma
  • South Dakota
  • Wyoming

Even if you don’t live in one of these states, it is worth hiring a real estate attorney for local compliance and advice.

What Is an Investor-Friendly Real Estate Attorney?

Not all real estate attorneys are the same. Most real estate attorneys specialize in private home transactions and will not be familiar with the unique requirements of investors. An Investor-friendly real estate attorney specialized in property transactions for investors will be able to understand and predict the unique challenges of real estate investing.

When you start investing in real estate, we recommend seeking the advice of an investor-friendly real estate attorney. How a real estate attorney can help you will vary based on your need for their service, location, and investing goals.

Even “investor-friendly real estate attorney” is a general term. The best investor-friendly real estate attorneys specialize in one or more specific areas of real estate investing. Their depth of knowledge and experience in these specialties make them a valuable resource for investors.

Some common specialties of investor-friendly real estate attorneys:

  • Real estate investing
  • Residential real estate
  • Commercial real estate
  • Raw land
  • Forbearance
  • Foreclosures
  • Short sales
  • New construction
  • Senior real estate
  • Probate

Once you start speaking with investor-friendly real estate attorneys, you’ll find other specialties which can open new investment opportunities. Local real estate attorneys will be familiar with some of the best opportunities in your area.

What Does a Real Estate Attorney Do for the Business Side of Real Estate Investing?

What a real estate attorney is for your business is simple: they will be an advisor and advocate on the legal structure and framework of your real estate investing business. A real estate attorney ensures your business is conducted in accordance with the local, state, and national legal procedures.

A real estate attorney will be able to answer your questions and address your needs but can also point out matters you may have overlooked or not realized were a concern. A real estate attorney is a backup to make sure you are legally in the clear, protected, and haven’t missed any steps.

Real estate attorney will advise on the business side of real estate investing, including:

  • The process and documentation to form a legal entity for your real estate investing company, such as creating an LLC.
  • Set up the legal structure to work with others, such as partnerships, joint venture agreements, or operating agreements.
  • Support in the case of disagreements or misunderstandings. This includes handling judgements, disputes, litigation, breach of contract, or issues related to contract performance.
  • Create a real estate syndication. A real estate attorney can set up the legal framework in which you will pool your money with other investors together to invest in larger properties or commercial real estate. This is called syndication.

What Does a Real Estate Attorney Do for the Real Estate Side of Investing?

A real estate attorney doesn’t only protect the business side of real estate investing, they also advise on many important aspects of real estate transactions — from creating contracts to researching liens, titles, and zoning.

What is a real estate attorney for real estate investors? The answer to this will depend on your real estate investing strategy. They can offer key insights and point out what needs greater review, especially in the preparation of contracts.

A real estate attorney can prepare:

  • Wholesaling contracts
  • Assignable contracts
  • Listing contracts
  • Offer contracts
  • Land contracts
  • Lease agreements
  • Lease options
  • Sandwich lease options
  • Loan workouts
  • Many other types of contracts and legal agreements!

Real estate attorneys also support investors with:

  • Mortgage disputes
  • Homeowners association review
  • Probate issues
  • Liens and assessments
  • Title review of ownership
  • Issues with tenants

In your real estate investing experience, more complex issues can come up. Having a good working relationship with a trustworthy real estate attorney will ensure you take swift and correct legal action.

Real estate attorney can advise on complex situations like:

  • Purchase at foreclosure auction or assistance with foreclosure proceedings.
  • Understanding the liabilities of an unusual real estate transaction.
  • Buying or selling a commercial property with existing tenants.
  • Purchasing of real estate to house a business.
  • Issues with tenants of rental properties.
  • Land, title, or environmental issues related to a property.
  • Advice on the legal requirements for real estate investing unique to your state or region.

What Doesn’t a Real Estate Attorney Do for Real Estate Investors?

The question “what is a real estate attorney?” shows how attorneys provide comprehensive services for both business structures and the real estate investing process. However, they don’t do everything. Real estate attorneys practice real estate law.

TIP: Real estate attorneys do not necessarily practice the buying and selling of real estate that most real estate agents do. They are not a replacement for an investor-friendly real estate agent.

In the real estate investing world, many real estate attorneys do choose to become real estate agents or brokers as well. These agents practice all aspects of real estate law as well as the buying and selling of real estate.

What real estate attorneys do NOT do:

  • They won’t advise on the value of a property.
  • They won’t provide lead generation.
  • They do not provide marketing.
  • They do not negotiate with prospective buyers. (They advise you, and then you, or your real estate agent, will have to negotiate for the purchase or sale of the property.)
  • They do not show properties, compare comparable properties “comps,” provide estimates, or any other services offered by real estate agents, inspectors, or appraisers.

The answer to the question “what is a real estate attorney” is that real estate attorneys will review contracts, titles, liens, and other legalities of investing in property while advising you on the best course of action. Their service is invaluable, but it does not replace an investor-friendly real estate agent.


A real estate attorney is a valuable resource for new and experienced investors in real estate, especially when you are just starting out and have so much to learn about real estate investing. From working with a real estate investing mentor to estimating repairs and getting an inspection or an appraisal — a real estate attorney gives you security and peace of mind about the legal aspects of real estate investing.

While setting up an LLC or creating partnerships, a real estate attorney can help with the formation of legal entities to build a real estate investing business. A real estate attorney can also advise on all types of contracts and legal situations unique to your real estate investing focus.

Hiring a real estate attorney is a small price to pay for the security and assurance they bring.

Read on for our frequently asked questions about the difference between a real estate attorney and a real estate agent — and why you need both when you start investing in real estate!

Real Estate Investing Frequently Asked Questions

What is wholesale real estate investing?

Wholesale real estate investing allows you to gain experience in the real estate investing game from home. You can get started with your wholesale real estate investing business by getting in the right mindset, properly setting up your business, verifying the legal requirements, learning the wholesaling process, and jumping into wholesaling.

What’s the best way to get into real estate investing?

Starting your own buy and rent real estate business gives you an additional monthly income and is a good option to start real estate investing. The first steps for owning a buy and rent business are making a plan, getting a team together, choosing your property type and market, getting funding and making an offer, rehabilitating the property, and, finally, renting it out.

We’ve got you covered with guides to help you through the entire process, from researching target neighborhoods to calculating rental revenue and preparing an income statement.

How do you form an LLC?

If you’re wondering how to form a limited liability company (LLC) for your real estate investing business, the process is easy:

  • Choose your LLC name
  • Find a registered agent
  • File your LLC formation documents with the state
  • Create an LLC operating agreement
  • Get an Employer Identification Number (EIN) for tax purposes

Check out our How to Form an LLC guide for more information.

Related Articles

  • How to Start a Wholesaling Real Estate Business
  • How to Start a House Flipping Business
  • How to Start a Buy and Rent Real Estate Business

I'm an enthusiast with extensive knowledge about real estate and legal matters related to properties. My expertise comes from years of hands-on experience, keeping abreast of industry trends, and staying informed about legal intricacies. Now, let's delve into the concepts presented in the article about real estate attorneys.

Real Estate Attorney Overview

Definition: A real estate attorney is a legal professional specializing in matters related to properties, providing crucial guidance for investors dealing with various real estate types.

Role of a Real Estate Attorney

  1. Transaction Documents: Real estate attorneys prepare and review documents involved in real estate transactions, representing investors' interests during closings.

  2. Legal Jurisdictions: As real estate law varies by state and locality, attorneys offer advice tailored to specific jurisdictions.

  3. State Requirements: Some states mandate attorney presence at closings or certification of property titles.

Investor-Friendly Real Estate Attorney

  1. Specialization: Not all attorneys are equal; investor-friendly ones understand the unique challenges of real estate investing and may specialize in areas such as residential, commercial, or raw land.

  2. Local Insight: They provide insights into local opportunities and specialize in various aspects of real estate investing.

Business Side of Real Estate Investing

  1. Legal Structure: Attorneys guide in forming legal entities like LLCs, setting up partnerships, and ensuring compliance with legal procedures.

  2. Dispute Resolution: They act as advisors and advocates in case of disagreements, disputes, or legal issues related to contract performance.

  3. Real Estate Syndication: Attorneys facilitate the legal framework for pooling money with other investors for larger property or commercial real estate investments.

Real Estate Side of Investing

  1. Contract Preparation: Attorneys assist in preparing various contracts, including wholesaling, assignable, listing, offer, land, lease agreements, and more.

  2. Support in Complex Situations: They offer advice on complex situations like foreclosure auctions, unusual transactions, commercial property dealings, and issues with tenants.

  3. Due Diligence: Attorneys research liens, titles, zoning, mortgage disputes, homeowners association matters, probate issues, and more.

Limitations of Real Estate Attorneys

  1. Not Real Estate Agents: They don't handle property buying/selling like real estate agents and don't engage in lead generation, marketing, or negotiation with buyers.

  2. Specialized Role: Attorneys focus on legalities, reviewing contracts, titles, and ensuring legal compliance.


Real estate attorneys are invaluable for investors, offering security and peace of mind. They assist in legal entity formation, contract preparation, and provide guidance in various real estate matters. While they don't replace real estate agents, they play a crucial role in ensuring legal clarity for investors.

For more details, you can explore the frequently asked questions about real estate investing at the end of the article.

Feel free to ask if you have specific questions or if there's anything else you'd like to know.

What is a Real Estate Attorney - For Investors | TRUIC (2024)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Tish Haag

Last Updated:

Views: 6249

Rating: 4.7 / 5 (47 voted)

Reviews: 94% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Tish Haag

Birthday: 1999-11-18

Address: 30256 Tara Expressway, Kutchburgh, VT 92892-0078

Phone: +4215847628708

Job: Internal Consulting Engineer

Hobby: Roller skating, Roller skating, Kayaking, Flying, Graffiti, Ghost hunting, scrapbook

Introduction: My name is Tish Haag, I am a excited, delightful, curious, beautiful, agreeable, enchanting, fancy person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.