If you're dealing with a real estate dispute, there are a couple of alternatives to going to court. You can go to mediation or arbitration, both of which help you resolve disputes more quickly and at a lower cost than heading to court. Alternative dispute resolution methods are good for situations where you're arguing over the cost of repairs, money disputes, inspection issues and your claims of misrepresentation, among a number of other claims.
It's not good to go through this kind of resolution if you are alleging some kind of criminal conduct on the part of a tenant or on the part of the landlord. Ethical complaints against realtors or disputes with the realtors who sold or are selling you a property are also performed through special channels.
If you do decide to go through arbitration or mediation, these activities usually take place within a few months of when the dispute started. Mediation usually takes just a couple of hours with a third party. This third party discusses possible solutions with you and the other party, so you both can come to a mutual agreement. Arbitration tends to take more time, but the arbitrator or panel looking at your case gathers all the facts and then makes the decision for you. This works best in the case that you both won't be able to work together to come to an agreement. In any case, it's normal to split the cost of mediation or arbitration with the other party. Arbitration and mediators tend to charge hourly or on a daily basis depending on how long you need their time.
In both cases of arbitration and mediation, you can bring your attorney along to help you make sure all of your requirements or needs are met.
Source: The Balance, "Real Estate Mediation and Arbitration for Disputes," James Kimmons, accessed Nov. 01, 2016