About Craig Blackmon

I am an attorney in Seattle with a practice focused on residential real estate. I am also an owner and the designated broker of Quill Realty, a new model real estate firm. Quill provides its clients with both an agent and an attorney, so you can Sign with Confidence. And Quill charges less than a typical agent, so the client saves money as well. Craig on Google+

Should you hire a lawyer when buying or selling a home? Depends – do you want to reduce your risk?

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As long-time readers know, I have been promoting the idea that attorneys should be involved in real estate transactions for about eight years (boy, time flies!). And it took me a looooong time to understand the difference between blogging and shameless self-promotion. I think I’ve learned, and hopefully I strike the right balance and tone here, […]

It’s Hard Out There for Buyers, Lesson 2: Make Sure You’re Dealing with the “Agent-in-Charge” (It May Not Be Who You Think)

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Here’s another quick tale from the trenches as I continue to work with clients at my new real estate firm, this time from the rough-and-tumble market of South King County.  Yup, it’s tough everywhere… My client identified a home in Kent for purchase.  It had been on the market for 200 days, with a couple […]

“Offers to Be Considered on a Future Date”: Is This Really Fair to Buyers?

DeniedStamp

As I work my way back into the market following the launch of my real estate firm, I am learning just how difficult it is from a buyer’s perspective.  Specifically, I am trying to get a client into a $400-500k home in West Seattle.  It turns out there are only a few thousand other people […]

An Open Letter to Glenn Kelman, Redfin CEO, on the “Discount Real Estate Broker” Model

Glenn Kelman

Dear Glenn: I’ve been following Redfin since its launch in 2006.  The year prior I started my own law practice focused on residential real estate.  I soon realized that I could provide the legal services needed by a home buyer or seller for a fee significantly less than 3%. Moreover, by 2005 it was apparent […]

Have you ever heard, “Don’t worry, it’s just paperwork” from your Real Estate Agent?

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Recently some good friends of mine decided to buy a home.  Such good friends, in fact, that we mutually agreed to keep business and friendship apart so as to not create any problems on either end.  So they didn’t use my services.  Instead, they first used a “discount” agent affiliated with a large, local real […]

And I thought the NY Times was authoritative…

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Having gone to college in NYC, I was indoctrinated at a relatively young age into believing that the New York Times was the “paper of record,” a bastion of journalistic integrity, a font of inestimable wisdom.  Today, I grew up.  I’ve seen the light.  I now recognize the New York Times for what it apparently […]

Real Estate Negotiation Skills: What Are They And Who Has Them?

The Negotiator

It’s not hard to find real estate agents who hold themselves out as “expert negotiators.”  There is even a certification – Certified Negotiation Expert, or CNE – that agents can obtain to further enhance their skills and reputation.  But really, what makes for a great negotiator when buying or selling real estate?  And who has […]

BofA HAMP Loan Mod Program: A Giant Fraud at Homeowner’s Expense

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Earlier this morning, I came across a very interesting statement made by a BofA employee in a lawsuit against the bank regarding its “participation” in the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP).  A “declaration” is a statement made under penalty of perjury and is commonly used in litigation to give facts (typically from a witness) to […]

How to Strengthen Your Offer when there are Multiple Potential Buyers

Money in a Jar

This is not legal advice, and you should not rely upon it.  For legal advice, consult an attorney, not a blog. [This post was updated 4/22.  New paragraph below.]  In today’s low-interest-rate, low-inventory, recovering-from-the-bubble housing market, there are more buyers than there are sellers.  This leads to routine instances of multiple offers, where only one buyer […]

Hope for Short Sales in 2013 – Congress is Working to Extend COD Income Tax Exemption

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This is not legal advice.  For legal advice, consult an attorney, not a blog.  Furthermore, the post below addresses some BUT NOT ALL issues relating to foreclosure, short sale, etc., and the following analysis is cursory and not complete.  If you face a foreclosure or are considering some alternative, you should obtain legal advice. The Senate Finance Committee […]