Power of attorney and the real estate transaction

This recent article from PARJustListed.com focused on handling a real estate transaction involving a power of attorney. While we’ve recently written on this topic, power of attorney issues involving real estate can be complicated, and there are several important points in this article that we think you may find helpful. 
  • Infirmity, incapacity, overseas service and death are the frequently encountered circumstances that will keep a title owner from participating in the sale of his or her property. In such cases, you will likely deal with an executor, court-appointed guardian or someone who holds power of attorney.  
  • Basically, power of attorney is a document by which an owner (principal) appoints another person (agent) to act for the owner. 
  • Do not confuse the use of the word “agent” with a real estate agent.  The agent named in the power of attorney is typically someone who holds a position of trust with the principal.
  • Only a competent person can sign the necessary document to create a power of attorney. If an owner becomes incompetent before signing a power of attorney, then only a guardian appointed by the court can act on their behalf.
  • A limitation of a power of attorney document is that it may only be used while the principal is living.
Knowing how to operate in the absence of an owner during a real estate transaction will minimize the likelihood of problems. If you find yourself facing a similar situation, turn to a trusted professional to protect your own interests and those of the principal. Please contact your Realtor or attorney for more information.

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