Mediation, arbitration favored in solving real estate disputes

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DEAR BOB: Many real estate sales contracts provide for mediation and/or arbitration of disputes that might arise after a sale is closed, such as alleged misrepresentation of a property. I recall some time ago you explained the pros and cons of mediation and arbitration, but I misplaced that article. Do you favor either mediation or arbitration of disputes, rather than going to a court lawsuit? --Reginald W. DEAR REGINALD: The trend is toward mediation and/or arbitration of real estate sales disputes, rather than court trials, which can be very expensive and time-consuming. Purchase Bob Bruss reports online. Many printed realty sales contracts allow the buyer and seller to agree to mediate or arbitrate disputes, which might arise later, such as when the seller allegedly failed to disclose a known defect in the home to the buyer. Mediation means an expert mediator attempts to get the parties to agree on a fair settlement of the dispute. But the mediator has no legal authority to force a...