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Lesson learned: Don't let experts scuttle your property deal

Lawyers and accountants are indispensable but can also ruin deals if you let them.

This was illustrated recently with a property we were reselling for a client in Prague.

A buyer was so interested in the property and it was empty that she asked to move into it as a renter before the sale went through. Whether this is a good idea or not is debatable but in this case we agreed.

All the major points of the sale were discussed at the onset before she moved into the apartment. The future purchase contract was going to be concluded immediately.

Then the buyer hired a lawyer.

This was a good move on her part. I would never recommend signing a purchase contract without having a lawyer who is representing you look it over. There are too many horror stories in Czech Republic when buyers have proceeded with blind trust.  

Lawyers often point out everything that could possibly go wrong, but don’t see the bigger picture.

However, the problem with lawyers and accountants is that they often feel obliged to point out every possible risk to you, even if the chances of it happening are miniscule. In their defence they don’t want you coming back to them afterwards saying that they hadn’t warned you.

Unfortunately for anyone not familiar with purchasing property it is very easy to allow minor details to scuttle a whole deal. This was the case in the story above where agreement could not be made between the seller and the buyer on a minor point of the contract after her attorney became involved.

A buyer has to remember that the lawyer or accountant advising you does not care whether or not you buy the property or make whatever deal you are trying to make. They don’t care if you’ve spent over 200 hours looking at properties and this is the one you finally chose.

In the sad story of our client’s flat the buyer is out tens of thousands of CZK and hours of time spent. The lawyer on the other hand has billed for every hour spent and is richer those tens of thousands of CZK. He is also counting on doing all the legal work on another property for his new ‘captive’ client.

If you are in a situation like this where an expert warns on all worst case scenarios you need to ask yourself: What really are the chances of this happening? If you walk away from the deal what do you stand to lose in terms of time and money?

Lesson learned: Listen to experts but make your own decisions.

by Nathan Brown (Google+) - - owner and managing director of Czech Point 101  - "You’re in good hands whether buying, selling or managing property in the Czech Republic."    

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