When purchasing real estate in Harbour Island Bahamas both the buyer and seller will hire a real estate attorney to complete the sale and purchase of the property. Your attorney will charge a fee of 2.5% of the purchase price. This is a standard fee for buying real estate in Harbour Island Bahamas and may seem very high when compared to attorney’s fees in the US.
Why your attorney’s fees are so high
Unlike in the US, obtaining title insurance is very rare and is considered unnecessary in the Bahamas. However, your attorney is responsible for doing a title search and must provide an ‘Opinion of Title’ on the status of the title which is considered just as valuable as insurance. It’s the attorney that is held responsible should an error be found in the title. For this reason, Bahamian law requires them to carry up to $1 million in Errors and Omissions insurance (E&O).
How to Reduce Attorney Costs
- Before hiring an attorney try negotiating a lower price. This is easily done when purchasing multiple properties or a single property over $500k.
- Hire a real estate attorney to represent both you and the seller which is customary practice in the Bahamas.
How to Find an Attorney
Have your real estate agent or someone else you know recommend to you a good attorney. Just be sure your referral comes from a trustworthy source and that the attorney has sufficient coverage under their E&O insurance to cover your purchase if necessary.