Conflicts in real estate transactions are inevitable. As long as there have been real estate transactions there have been issues. Disputes in real estate can include repair issues, disclosure issues, earnest deposit, agency issues and many others. Going to court to settle a real estate dispute is always an option but most would rather try to settle with less costly methods. Most people think of alternative dispute resolution options to include only arbitration. However using a mediator is also an option.
Typically when real estate disputes are involved, they can take months or years to work out in the court system. Time is usually a very important factor in most real estate transactions. People who are in the field like contractors, realtors and inspectors do not want to risk damage to their reputation by having unfavorable allegations raised in a lawsuit. A bad ruling could limit this person’s ability to continue working in the field.
The mediation process offers a solution to these issues and concerns. Mediation is a confidential process which uses a neutral third party to help the parties resolve the conflict in a mutually agreeable manner. Mediation can be used as soon as the conflict arises and can often be finished in a few days rather than a few years. Compared to going to court, mediation is very inexpensive. You do not need to have an attorney to participate in a mediation. If you want to have an attorney with you at a mediation you can but it is not a requirement. A benefit of mediation is that it can repair relationships and the professionals may even continue to get referrals from once disgruntled clients. Mediation has a track record for success. Most mediations result in an agreement. Just because the agreement wasn’t attained in a courtroom does not mean that it is not binding.
If you are entering a real estate transaction, ask your Realtor or Professional if the contract they are using contains a mediation clause in it. Most states have them but you should still check just to make sure. The Arizona Association of Realtors offers mediation services to every case that is appropriate for arbitration. For more information on mediation in Arizona go to AZmediator.com.
This Article is designed to be of general interest and should not be considered legal advice. The specific information discussed may not apply to you. Before acting on any matter contained herein, you should consult with your personal legal adviser