Real estate is about much more than simply buying or selling a piece of property. California residents may be surprised to learn that there is a long legal process involved in any real estate transaction. That process can become even longer if mediation or other legal action is needed to handle the finer points of the transaction.

What is mediation?

Mediation is not meant to be an adversarial process where one person “wins” while the other takes the “loss.” Instead, a mediator is an unbiased, neutral individual who tries to work with both parties involved in the transaction to help reach a deal that works for both of them. Contrary to popular belief, the mediator does not make any sort of decision during the process; instead, he or she simply works to negotiate between the parties.

When do you need mediation?

When a dispute is going on in a real estate transaction that the parties cannot work through, they may consider mediation. This mediator is not there to make decisions. He or she can simply work with both parties and possibly present solutions that they have not thought of yet.

How do you begin mediation?

It may be beneficial to consult an attorney before making the move into mediation. This attorney may help a client decide whether mediation is needed or if it is time to jump straight into litigation. There are times that mediation may not be an option, such as where a contract has been breached.

Anyone involved in real estate disputes may want to contact an attorney to decide their next course of action. This attorney may review the real estate contract in question, discuss the issues and help their client make a decision about what is best for them going forward.