If you ask most real estate attorneys how much time interruptions take out of their day … they will likely have no idea.
When you ask them how much money they're paying out of pocket to fund these interruptions … They definitely won't know!
So, let's jump into a few sources of these costly interruptions and try to put a rough dollar amount on those. That way, you can see exactly how much money you will save by reducing interruptions in your real estate law firm, all thanks to handy-dandy real estate law software.
Real estate lawyers spend a lot of their day in a re-active mode rather than in a pro-active and carefully planned-out manner.
That goes for both you and your staff. It may be unpleasant to admit, but the majority of your time - day after day, week after week, month after month throughout the year... is being spent just reacting to things that come up and interruptions that occur throughout the day.
For small firms or solo practitioners with legal assistants—the cost of wasted time is astronomical because you only have yourself to rely on. As the law firm owner or solo practitioner, your time is the most valuable of anyone.
Suppose you are spending time on interruptions and mundane chores. In that case, your time is worth much less, and every single moment you waste is costing you precious money—the opportunity cost of doing something else with that time you're wasting. As a real estate law firm, you should be getting the most out of your time and earning more clients.
But most real estate attorneys assume that's the way life is: busy and unbearable, or they'll say, "that's just the nature of the business." The reality is that there are many well-organized attorneys that leverage technology, such as real estate law software. It helps them organize their day and reduce or eliminate most of the interruptions before they ever happen. Real estate law software allows them to focus on growing their business and completing each task from a proactive mindset, compared to a non-productive, re-active mode.
Real Estate Law Software Directly Reduces Your Law Firm's Monthly Cash Burn
If your real estate law firm struggles to stay organized and meet deadlines, you are not alone. Working with real estate agents and communicating correctly with clients can take up a lot of your precious time. Reduce your law firm's monthly cash burn, and take back control of your day using real estate law software.
The real reason you may feel like you never have time in your real estate law firm is that you're constantly getting interrupted and rarely have time to focus. What a waste of time!
According to the New York Times, it takes about 25 minutes to get back on a task after a disruption has occurred. 25 minutes could add up to a couple of hours in no time.
Statista reported in March 2020 that 84% of law firms had increased efficiency in their organization thanks to real estate law software, and 37% of law firms reported that technology in their law firms reduced their overall operating costs.
2. Status updates
Communication is the most important thing when running a real estate law practice.
One of the most critical activities that a real estate law firm needs to do to provide an excellent level of service and keep clients and agents happy is to have good communication.
Communication includes everything from outlining the roadmap for the real estate transaction to conveying things that your law firm is working on, waiting on, and providing status updates in general.
In terms of what type of communications eat up your time….Updates about what is going on and what happens next are the most commonly asked questions from clients, agents, and other outside parties involved in the transaction.
Clients and agents want updates all the time and, unfortunately for your productivity, it's usually urgent and on their timeline when they decide they need to know something from you. This turns into constant interruptions for you and your staff.
Real estate law software helps you drastically reduce interruptions by managing everybody's expectations and automatically updating them once something happens BEFORE they even have to ask you for updates.
This vastly reduces the unnecessary disruption and keeps your transactions smooth and streamlined, so everybody is on the same page.
Avoid sending status updates via email or even by phone. Real estate law software automates all communication for your practice.
Clients and agents will feel like you're a mind reader because they're getting updates before they even ask… thanks to real estate law software.
3. Putting out fires
Just one unplanned "fire" to put out before a closing can cost you your entire day. Staying on top of your tasks means that you'll be saving a lot of time dealing with interruptions from forgotten to-do items. Fortunately, real estate law software can help with that.
Think about when some crucial task has accidentally slipped through the cracks, which is every real estate attorney's worst nightmare. Once something important has been overlooked, you might have to drop everything else to get it done. Getting caught dropping the ball on something also makes you and your whole firm look bad and very unprofessional.
Using real estate law software to stay organized and on top of deadlines prevents things from falling through the cracks. And that, in turn, prevents potential malpractice claims. Close to 30% of all malpractice claims are related to planning, forgetting tasks, missing deadlines, and calendaring issues -- all of which could easily be prevented through better organization or communication.
Real estate law software helps you better manage your workload and your tasks, including deadlines and critical dates. It has a built-in Tickler system to automatically remind you of when things are coming up and what is overdue.
Real estate law software keeps everything organized, including everything inside your firm and everything that comes from the outside, into your office.
Even if these tasks take a couple of hours a week total, you can do the math of how much that is costing you on a monthly and annual basis.
4. Email inbox and administrative tasks
Sometimes, that includes multitasking, like while on the phone, checking emails, trying to catch up, or reply to messages to squeeze in some extra productivity.
Email is the single biggest time-waster of a real estate attorney's day because it is a constant barrage of messages that you feel compelled to respond to or react to, which naturally becomes an interruption. Those interruptions are happening every time a new email comes in could cost you dearly.
If you've ever caught yourself intending to do something and then suddenly open your email inbox and get lost only to wake up an hour later, having no idea what you were planning to do... You understand how draining this can be on your time.
Don't think it happens just to you. This happens to your legal assistants and all your other staff – everyone's time is being drained in their email inbox. And all that time is being drained on a routine back and forth, forwarding attachments, replying to mundane inquiries, checking up on things, etc. All tasks could be eliminated or automated using real estate law firm transaction management software.
Real estate law software helps you organize and streamline your email inbox by helping you do more with less time.
Optimizing and streamlining your email inbox can save you at least an hour or two a day, be eliminating or automating a lot of the routine emailing you do. Each time you can prevent having to compose or reply to an email, even if it takes one or two minutes per email, that time adds up when you're juggling dozens or hundreds of transactions and can be redirected to be used on other productive tasks.
A powerful way it saves you time is, Real estate law software can automatically manage your attachments, such as new contracts from real estate brokers. It can automatically sort and upload them to the appropriate transaction folder for the rest of your law firm and staff to immediately have access to.
Real Estate Law Software can save you anywhere between 10 to 20 hours per week by reducing interruptions
We all know the typical workweek is 40 hours long, but real estate lawyers would kill to be able to work just 40 hours a week. But where is their time going? According to Statista, some attorneys spend between 10 and 20 hours a week (or more) on non-billable, mundane, administrative tasks. That could mean at least HALF of your workweek is spent doing secretarial work, organizing things, responding to emails, and answering interruptions.
On the American Bar Association's website, the median billable wage for attorneys in 2021 was around $300 per hour. Even though you probably charge a flat fee per closing as a real estate lawyer, that doesn't mean your time isn't valuable on an hourly basis. It's even more valuable because you don't get paid extra for taking more time… so efficiency is critical.
If you are an attorney spending 10 to 20 hours a week on non-billable tasks, at $300/hour, you could be wasting as much as $6,000/week. The $6,000 a week equals more than $300,000 in a year, in wasted time that could be used for growing your firm...
The same goes for your staff. If you can keep them more efficient, you're saving actual hard dollars and cents by not paying them to take extra time for tasks that can be done quicker.
According to Robert Half Legal, a legal secretary in New York makes the median salary of around $60,000 a year in 2021. If you use real estate law software in your practice, you could double your staff's efficiency, which saves you considerable money.
Using real estate law firm software could help your firm keep up or stay ahead with your existing resources and perhaps save you from the expenditure of making additional hires "just to keep up" thanks to technology doing the work for you.
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Learn precisely how TrackWithEase could help increase your productivity and streamline your real estate transactions. Schedule a brief online demo with a member of our team, and use our calculator to determine exactly how much money you could save using real estate law firm software.
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