Nadel & Ciarlo, P.C.

How can mediation help in a real estate dispute?

It may be the case that you don't always get along with a landlord, or, if you're a landlord, you might not get along with your tenant. If you have a real-estate dispute as a landlord or tenant, buyer or seller, you're not alone. Many people struggle with disputes, but there is a way to work through them. One of those ways is through mediation.

Why should you choose mediation? It's a helpful process in which a third-party mediator, usually well-versed in real-estate and state laws, listens and gives input into your situation. Both you and the other party may meet with the mediator independently or at the same time, depending on the situation. Mediation is typically used first when a conflict arises, instead of heading to trial. Going to court is more expensive and time consuming.

If mediation doesn't work, arbitration is an option. This is a process in which the arbitrator listens to both sides of what occurred and then rules on the case. An arbitration session may or may not bind the parties, depending on the agreement. If the session is binding, then the ruling determines what happens. For example, if the arbitrator states that the tenant has to pay the landlord for damage to an apartment, then that ruling is legally enforceable.

You can speak with your attorney about which of these processes might work better for you. In both cases, the parties must decide if they want to participate. If not, then it may be better to go to court and allow a judge to rule on the case.

Source:, "Real Estate Mediation and Arbitration," Jim W. Hildreth, accessed March 09, 2017

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