What Is a Real Estate Power of Attorney?
A real estate power of attorney is a document that allows you to grant a person that you trust to act on matters that concern selling and buying properties, such as signing important documents on your behalf. This document also allows your appointed agent to manage your properties, as well. Like other types of powers of attorney, this document needs to be signed and notarized.
Another important note on this document is that the powers granted to an appointed agent are limited. It means that once the principal becomes incapacitated or dies, the real estate power of attorney, along with its provisions, automatically expires.
How to Make a Real Estate Power of Attorney
Including a real estate power of attorney in your estate planning is one of the most important things that you should consider. Doing so helps you secure your properties, especially if you’re planning to move somewhere else. Listed below are some of the tips we gathered on how to make a real estate power of attorney.
Step 1. Consult the Matter with a Lawyer
It’s no secret that lawyers are experts when it comes to legal matters, especially those concerning real properties. So before creating a real estate power of attorney, you must consult a lawyer first. This way, you can elaborate and specify the limits of the agent that you’ll appoint, and know the steps on how to execute the document legally.
Step 2. Choose a Trusted Agent
Granting someone the power to act and represent you in transactions and matters concerning your property should be taken seriously. So when choosing an agent to appoint, make sure that he or she has your trust to act on your behalf, in your best interest. You can either appoint a family member, relative, close friend, or anyone you trust, that has no interest in transactions involving your property.
Step 3. Set the Duration of its Validity
Although a real estate power of attorney automatically loses its effect when the principal becomes incapacitated or dies, it is still essential to set the document’s validity and duration. You can either choose to set the period of its validity until you are available to personally attend to your property or select any date that you prefer.
Step 4. Have It Legally Acknowledged
Real estate powers of attorney are legally binding documents, which need legal acknowledgment to be effective. So when the time comes that you need to sign the document, make sure to do it in front of a notary public and witnesses. And more importantly, make sure that all copies have a notary seal stamped on them.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can a family member or relative override a real estate power of attorney?
Real estate powers of attorney can only be overridden by the principal, as with any types of powers of attorney. However, the principal’s family or relatives may opt to challenge the power of attorney in court if they believe that the agent is no longer acting in the principal’s best interest.
Do each party need a copy of the real estate power of attorney?
Like any legal document, parties inside a real estate power of attorney should have a copy of the document. This document will serve as proof for the agent to act on the principal’s behalf legally. It is also important if the principal wishes to terminate a power of attorney, as well.
How much does executing a real estate power of attorney costs?
A real estate power of attorney doesn’t cost that much. Usually, you’ll only have to pay fees for notarization and recording it in your local land records office. Other than that, you may also have expert fees if you consulted a lawyer while making the document.
Do real estate powers of attorney need witnesses for its execution?
Most of the time, a real estate power of attorney will require witnesses to be present when signing it in front of a notary public. However, it may depend on the state upon which you execute the real estate power of attorney.
Can I grant a real estate power of attorney to my realtor?
Real estate powers of attorney cannot be granted to your realtor or real estate agent as they have an interest in the transaction involving real property. In general, anyone with interest in the transaction of a property can’t become an agent in a power of attorney.
“No man is an island.” This classic adage is very applicable in times when attending to significant and pressing matters, like real estate. Real estate is a world in itself, as it involves the process of selling and buying properties, and even managing them. Real estate powers of attorney let you legally enlist the help of someone that you trust to look after your property or in acquiring one.