“Does it make sense to me?” is a standard I use on just about everything in my daily life, including: when I speak to and listen to my son; what my neighbor tells me about a situation; what I observe while driving my car; the prices or the items on a store; while walking at the mall; in fact, everywhere I go and just about everything I do.
Whenever I am observing something or receiving some information, I am always trying to understand it one way or the other. If I do not understand the information, I simply do not act. For this purpose, the question “Does it makes sense to me?” has become a very useful tool.
Real estate transactions are no exception, and I would invite anyone (particularly non-lawyers) to understand and use this standard accordingly. What follows is my point of view on this.
One key aspect of working a real estate transaction is and should always be understanding what is going on, regardless if you are a seller, a buyer, or even a lawyer. Any point of confusion, of non-clarity, should be immediately attended and handled. If it does not make sense to you, the invitation is to make sure that the point is clarified before moving forward. Otherwise, the confusion you are experiencing at that point in time when it does not make sense to you will continue to reign during the course of the transaction.
The same standard applies to me as a lawyer when I am asked to become involved in a transaction.
On occasion, I am presented with a transaction which simply does not make sense to me. I will of course do my best to dig in and obtain the full concept of the proposed transaction, but there are times when the deal simply does not make sense to me and I just have to let it go.
I propose it should be no different with a party to real estate transaction, particularly in Puerto Rico. Everyone involved should do his or her best to understand and actually have a pretty good concept of the transaction from beginning to end. If at any point in time something you read, or is told to you, does not make sense to you, stop and perhaps even take a step back and make sure you understand it before moving forward.
To sum up, if it does not make sense to you, it needs to be clarified, since it is your transaction after all.
Very truly yours,
Santiago F. Lampón
Lawyer and Notary Public