A power of attorney (POA) can be used to designate another person to make and/or sign agreements on your behalf. Not all POAs include the authority to sell property, so you need to be sure that your POA covers the sale of real estate.
The person who is acting as your agent is called the “attorney-in-fact” and is authorized to act on your behalf. Furthermore, the POA designates you as the “principal.” POAs are especially useful for real estate transactions if you live out of state or in another country, or if you will be out of the state when a real estate transaction closes.
The two most common forms of powers of attorney for real estate transactions include:
General POA – A general POA allows you to appoint an individual or institution as attorney-in-fact. This type of POA confers broad powers to the attorney-in-fact, allowing them to act on your behalf regarding real estate, financial transactions, and other matters.
Special POA — A special POA gives the attorney-in-fact powers to act in your stead for all matters pertaining to a specific real estate transaction. A special POA will typically spell out the duties of the attorney-in-fact as well as describe the real estate involved. Once the transaction has been completed, the POA will terminate.
If you are creating a POA in Arizona, you will need to have the POA document notarized and signed in the presence of a witness who is over the age of 18. POAs executed in other states are also valid in Arizona, although the title company or closing attorney may require that the attorney-in-fact provide an affidavit stating that the POA is still in effect and that the principal is not deceased.
Since different jurisdictions have different requirements for drafting a real estate power of attorney, you should consult with an Arizona real estate attorney if you plan to use a POA for a real estate transaction in Arizona.
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