Everyone has heard horror stories about people that have signed a contract, didn’t know what they were agreeing to, and somehow got taken. But still, when presented a document that needs to be signed while someone waits very few people actually read it. Some will ask what it says, others will skim it quickly, but not many actually make someone wait while they read the contract. As the length of the document grows, the number of readers goes down. We see this all the time in real estate transactions. Has anybody really read their mortgage documents before signing them?
A Contractual Agreement
Being a real estate agent in Colorado, we are required to have some forms signed by consumers. It’s supposed to be in an effort to look out for the consumer. Unfortunately, sometimes it does exactly the opposite. The documents I am mainly referring to are listing agreements. There is one for sellers and one for buyers. Colorado listing contracts lock both parties into a business relationship for a designated time frame. It clarifies what the responsibilities of both parties are and what these services will cost you. This is important information you should know before you agree to it.
Lookout for Yourself
Real estate agents are a sampling of our population. Just as there are good people and bad people in the population, there are good agents and bad agents. There are measures in place to try and weed out the bad and keep the good but knowing which is which isn’t always obvious. It’s important you look out for yourself by reading the contracts and asking questions.
You may Suffer the Consequences
Luckily, the consequences of signing a document with your real estate agent without reading it are typically minimal, if any. Most agents will ultimately do what is right. However, you could find yourself stuck with an agent you don’t like or one that is incompetent. That could cost you time, hassle, money, or all three.
Take a minute to read the contract before signing. It’s worth the time it takes.