??? signing contract-but they don't read English - Posted by John_Az

Posted by Rob FL on October 25, 1998 at 10:56:32:

My wife of 3yrs is Dominican. Part of why I am taking the class is because she will breaks my legs if I don’t learn her language. Just kidding. But she really wants me to learn, so it gives me a double benefit. Otherwise I can very much see your point from a $ perspective.

??? signing contract-but they don’t read English - Posted by John_Az

Posted by John_Az on October 20, 1998 at 09:57:13:

Supposed to meet with buyers this afternoon to sign all cash purchase agreement. Buyers have a minor daughter (probably about 16 years old) who was present at property and translated all information. Any thoughts on whether the contract we sign this afternoon with their daughter translating for them would be legal and binding? The property in question is a fixer upper with major problems (which I have disclosed) and I don’t want them able to back out on a technicality.

Thanks! John

Re: ??? don’t read English - Posted by Rob FL

Posted by Rob FL on October 22, 1998 at 21:41:14:

I have just started taking a basic Spanish class at the local community college. I have noticed here in Orlando that probably 20% or more of the distressed properties are owned by people with Hispanic sounding names. If I ever learn to speak the language, I think it will be a major plus to be able to knock and someone’s door or call them on the phone and be able to speak fluently with them in their native tongue.

Re:signing contract-but they don’t read English - Posted by Dirk Roach

Posted by Dirk Roach on October 22, 1998 at 01:50:48:

You know John, it sounds like we are in the same boat. I’m in the San Diego area. And it has become apparent to me, that not being able to converse in spanish is a drawback.

I am able to get around in a few other languages, but never really got around to Spanish, in my schooling, because I suppose it lacked a certain glammour. Anyhow now that I’m out here in the real world, I think that this is a language that I need to know. And I plan on purchasing a good course in it very, very soon.

I have even out here seen competive dealers with ads in spanish.

I suggest you and anyone else living in an area with a large market of spanish speaking people to learn the language. I mean why should we limit our market?

Dirk Roach

thanks - Posted by John Az

Posted by John Az on October 20, 1998 at 19:49:34:

Thanks for the responses. Some good things to think about due to my location so near Mexico.

They showed up with their adult son to translate. I sorta winged it with a clause similar to that offered by JohnBoy. Have to see about getting a contract drawn up in Spanish for future deals. For referance for others www.hud.gov has lead based paint info in Spanish.

??? signing contract-but they don’t read English - Posted by Mr Donald (NORVA)

Posted by Mr Donald (NORVA) on October 20, 1998 at 17:18:02:


Sign the papers at YOUR real estate attorney’s office with a notary available to witness and notarize the agreement, etc.

If you know what language they speak, hire an interpreter as well if the person translating is under the age of legal majority (usually 18), as you seem to indicate. Cost: $200-500, plus airfare and lodging if they’re not local.

Just how lucrative IS this deal?

Mr Donald.

signing contract-but they don’t read English - Posted by JohnBoy

Posted by JohnBoy on October 20, 1998 at 13:21:12:

I would have the buyer’s initial each and every sentence after fully explaining each one to the daughter and let her translate it after she reads each sentence. Then I would ad a clause at the end of the contract that states something like:

“It is fully understood between buyer and seller that seller has advised buyer’s to have a professional translater translate the terms and conditions of this contract. It is further agreed and understood between buyer’s and seller’s that buyer’s have refused to seek a professional translater and buyer’s have chose to have buyer’s daughter “name”, translate this contract in which seller has read to buyer’s chosen translator and allowed buyer’s daughter as buyer’s chosen translator to read and translate to buyer’s which buyer’s have initialed and agreed that they fully understand the terms and conditions of this agreement and waive any liability towards seller in any translation regarding this agreement. Buyer’s further agree that buyer’s fully understand and agree that buyer’s have been translated to, by their sole chosen translator that buyer’s shall be bound by all of the terms and conditions of this agreement without any recourse to seller other than what’s agreed to in this contract.”

Buyer’s x__________________________________________.

I am NOT a lawyer. You should check with your attorney first regarding your liability to this matter.


Dey shod lyern to speek eenglish :slight_smile: - Posted by Sheik

Posted by Sheik on October 20, 1998 at 13:16:15:


I suggest you give your lawyer a quick call. He/She
will/should be able to guide you. Maybe Bill will
give his input.


A question to ponder… - Posted by Tom Brown

Posted by Tom Brown on October 20, 1998 at 12:52:31:

What is to prevent the buyers from coming back and trying to get out of the deal and the daughter backing the family up.

I have seen similar things attempted at car dealerships before. My wife was in the biz.

It certainly would be easier to defend if you had a trusted third party translate for you.

Re: ??? don’t read English - Posted by Brad Crouch

Posted by Brad Crouch on October 25, 1998 at 03:49:12:


I have been married to a lady from Costa Rica for the last 18 years. When I met her, she didn’t speak English. We married in Costa Rica with her parents in attendance, and I had no idea what was being said.

Here it is 18 years later, and I STILL don’t speak Spanish well enough to carry on a conversation. Oh yeah, I can communicate with the gardner, but no “complicated” conversations.

I’ll admit that I really don’t “study” and my wife now speaks English, so there is no real “need”. But understand that this is not an undertaking to be taken lightly. Learning another language is not easy. And it is VERY time consuming.

You might do better to just hire a bi-lingual person to take with you when you talk to the spanish speaking prospects, and build his “fee” into the deal. This might be more cost efficient.

Think about it, learning Spanish to the conversational level that would be needed would surely cost you lots of money in deals you no longer had the time to persue.

Just my $0.02,