Buying from a friend

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I am buying from a friend. The house is in Texas. What is the cheapest way for me to close this ownership transfer transaction? Please share details and any tips and tricks.  I trust the friend but do want to hedge against any issues. 

Is it true that existing titles can be transferred at a lower cost than generating a new title deed?

Your thoughts, personal anecdotes, advice ... All is welcome. 

Lesson Learned:  There is no thing as buying from a friendThis is a business transaction and it needs to be handled as such.  I have seen family members do each other in over these transactions and once-time friends unload their problem properties on to a buddy.  The savings isn't worth the potential liability.  Handle your business like a business and you'll avoid a repeated "lesson learned."  

In MN. my brother got a realtor to do the paperwork for $500. Was probably an hour or two of their time but it was done by a professional who has filled out the forms 100’s of Times. 

Realtors don't file Deeds with the Clerk of the Court. That's a function that needs to be done by a licensed Title manager and/or attorney. It's not the purchase contract that is expensive, it's the title insurance and documentary taxes when you buy/sell real estate. Please know your costs by getting an estimate from a Title Company; they can also help you explore options.

Sorry if I wasn’t clear. In title states of course you’re going to use them their services. I was simply talking about purchase documents, scheduling/coordinating inspections, appraisals, closings, etc. But you’re right, you might be able to save even that $500 to the realtor if the title company wants to be extra helpful  

The reason I brought this up is I appreciate a realtor’s help but I’ve been quoted 2-4% “commissions” when we already had a buyer and seller. They wanted $8-$16,000 with a straight face. Even then they would be a fiduciary to only the buyer.