Today I present another written interview with Chris Pahl of georgiatitle.com
Check out the interview:
1. What got you interested in becoming a real estate attorney? Share your story.
Prior to law school, I worked in the financial securities industry as a licensed stockbroker. I originally intended to continue in securities law work after graduation, but the regulatory environment was undergoing major changes at the time. Since the real estate market was really taking off, firms were hiring and I landed a position with a large, top notch, nationally recognized commercial real estate law firm. From there, I transitioned to a multi-office Atlanta based law firm, becoming partner, where I worked for over ten years. My current practice is with the Redmond Law Group, located in Buckhead, Atlanta’s financial district, where I am partner and lead counsel on transactional matters including finance, title insurance and real estate.
2. What are some of the biggest challenges you find when it comes to closing on a property?
When my office does not have an existing relationship with the closing parties, we make it a point to establish one before closing. This is a great technique for reducing the chance of unexpected closing surprises. One of our biggest challenges is educating the public on the importance of the relationship between a property buyer and the closing attorney. Our challenge is getting the message out to the public that people who choose their independent closing attorney have the best possible closing experiences. This is important since most frequently, people will defer their choice of closing attorney to someone else involved in the transaction who may not have the best interests of the client at heart. At my firm, we strive for on-time, high quality closing experiences and this is fostered by the relationship we have with our clients beginning from the opening of escrow through the lifetime ownership of the property.
3. Does the paperwork involved in closing on property ever feel as though it’s difficult to keep organized? Do you have any tips for staying organized?
The lawyers and paralegals and my law firm are highly experienced and organized. We also use a proprietary file management system that maintains all files consistently and keeps documents organized, even in cases where the file grows quite large. Our firm has invested in state of the art hardware and software technologies for electronic document management, storage and retrieval. Clients benefit in both response time and reduced costs, since electronically stored files are instantly accessible and do not incur storage and retrieval costs. Our firm is also registered to handle electronic real estate instrument filings in the State of Georgia.
4. Does most business for you come through word of mouth? Would you share some insight on how you advertise?
Referrals in the land-title industry tend to come from other industry professionals, namely lenders and real estate brokers. Relaxed laws now permit title companies to pay, what is more or less, kickbacks for referrals in what is known as “affiliated business relationships.” Studies have shown that a majority of people believe these relationships are a conflict of interest, so we do not participate in them. In fact, many professionals prefer to refer out of network to remove the appearance of impropriety or overreaching. When clients choose independent real estate attorneys, they may benefit by lower costs, since the money that would be spent on referral fees translates to savings to the consumer. People who take the initiative to choose their attorney almost always benefit from superior service.
5. What are your future plans for 2014 and beyond?
Future plans for 2014 and beyond include continuing to develop a robust and diverse clientele in the Atlanta metropolitan area. We are a true boutique real estate practice and we intend to continue to provide a personalized, outrageous level of service to our clients and the real estate professionals we serve.