Real Estate Attorney
When real estate transactions go bad, resolving them is costly, time-consuming, and stressful. It is best to speak with an attorney before you decide to buy, sell, exchange, or develop real estate. You need to understand your rights and responsibilities before you sign ANY paperwork. You need to have someone who represents your interests and is not motivated by their commission or other outside pressures.
Our team is here to assist on all sides of real estate transactions and disputes to ensure you and your family are protected. In some instances, the assistance of a real estate attorney will be necessary years or even decades after a property is purchased. We are able to assist in all boundary disputes, adverse possession cases, zoning and land use issues, and a litany of other real estate related disputes so that you are able to enjoy your property as you intended when you purchased it.
Whenever issues arise in real estate, whether in the transaction or later on, it is most cost-effective if clients bring on attorneys sooner than later. Real estate issues tend to only get worse as time carries on. Bringing an experienced attorney on board sooner allows you to understand the issues and solutions before things spiral out of control.
When my aunt died, I was charged with handling her estate which included her wonderful, but neglected home. I was faced with selling it despite its structural problems and despite a falling real estate market. I was also very concerned about having personal liability. Swendson/Fey Law Ltd. backed me up through the whole process. They dealt with the inspectors, engineers, title company, brokers, buyers, lenders, closing agents and beneficiaries. I sold it for more than the beneficiaries thought possible. The buyer accepted it “as is.”
How We Help Facilitate Real Estate Transactions
We make certain our clients’ contracts are legally sound and adequately protect them. Sellers need to be aware of their potential continuing liabilities after closing.
We review and help implement strategies for reducing risk and liability while moving transactions forward. There can be tax consequences when selling real estate.
We make sure to review the nature and extent of any taxes due. We can discuss alternative tax strategies to maximize your return.
Real Estate transactions are often one of the largest transactions an individual will undertake in their lives. You should not make the mistake of just trusting someone with little or no legal training in deciphering what will be best for you and your family.
Nobody wants to buy a problem, particularly when the problem could wind up costing you tens of thousands of dollars. We take pride in negotiating contracts that provide our clients with the best opportunity to ensure they are buying their property without any hidden issues that will prevent them from enjoying the property as they intended.
For Sale By Owner (FSBO)
Buying or selling a home without a licensed real estate agent is becoming more and more popular to avoid costly commissions. We are able to assist either buyers or sellers in completing transactions without the high cost associated with real estate agents.
We are able to walk our clients through the ins and outs of the sales contract explaining the pros and cons of different decisions as well as make solid recommendations to protect our clients’ best interests.
Real Estate Professionals
Real Estate Professionals like realtors, title company agents, and lenders often contact our office to assist them with getting a deal closed. We’re always happy to help resolve legal issues to help move a transaction along to closing.
From title issues to missing easement documents, to the drafting of a land contract, we’re always happy to help fill in the gaps where other professionals are unable to do so.
When developing real estate, we help clients evaluate the investment, acquire the property, and put asset protection strategies in place.
We help get zoning variances, conditional use permits, and government approvals wherever needed. We help with financing. We form the limited liability entities for holding associations and condominium documentation. We have comfortable working relationships with the engineers, surveyors, appraisers, bankers, brokers, government agencies, contractors, and scientists who are instrumental in a successful and profitable project.
Real Estate Disputes
Boundary Disputes & Adverse Possession
Is your neighbor’s new shed on your property? Have the neighbors begun storing their boat on your land? Does your neighbor’s new survey suggest that land you thought was yours is now theirs? These are all examples of boundary disputes and adverse possession cases we have been involved in over the years and are not too uncommon, particularly with lake properties. We take a pragmatic approach to getting these disputes resolved based on the facts and circumstances in each case. Of course, we’d all like to live by the axiom of good fences make good neighbors, but sometimes it’s appropriate to take legal action to defend your property rights from your neighbors.
Zoning & Land Use
We are happy to assist clients in obtaining variances, conditional use permits, and addressing any other zoning issues they may have related to their property. We are also able to advise clients on potential zoning infractions from neighboring properties to ensure the nonconforming property does not harm the property value of your property. We help cut through the red tape to ensure your property is zoned appropriately and you are able to obtain the necessary permits and approvals you may need.
Easements, Shared Driveway Agreements, & Joint Well Agreements
Do you and your neighbor share a driveway? Do you cross a neighboring property to get to your own property? Do you want to subdivide your property but have access issues? Do you and your neighbors share a well? These are all examples where an easement or a shared driveway agreement can come into play. We draft these documents to “run with the land” so that they remain in effect for decades and make sure they are clearly defined so no issues arise later on. Likewise, if you and your neighbor(s) share a well, drafting a shared well agreement now can save you all a load of trouble, time, cost, and frustration by getting a comprehensive agreement in place now while everyone gets along.
We often get phone calls from clients asking how to clear up title issues on property they own. Whether the property was co-owned by a deceased loved one, divided in a divorce proceeding, or simply has an error or omission on the original deed, we are able to help our client shore up title issues quickly and efficiently. We take the time to explain to our clients the pros and cons of owning and transferring property in many different forms such as quit claim deeds, Transfer on Death Deeds, survivorship marital property, joint tenants with rights of survivorship, tenants in common, etc.
When people purchase property that is subject to a Homeowners’ Association, they all to frequently purchase the property without reading the full nature of the restrictive covenants that are put in place by the HOA. We have experience in drafting, amending, and terminating HOAs and in dealing with HOA boards and developers to get the goals of our clients accomplished.
Landlord & Tenant Issues
Did you miss a rent payment? Are there outstanding maintenance, repairs, and pest issues? We help our clients resolve a variety of landlord and tenant issues including missed rent payments, maintenance/repairs/pest issues, breach of lease agreement terms, communication programs, payment for damages, etc. From minor issues to major issues that seriously threaten the enjoyment of your rental or your ability to stay in the rental, we can help you understand your rights under landlord law and remedy the issue with the least hassle possible (ideally outside of court).
Real estate law Resources
Wondering what a legal term means? Our glossary focuses on common legal terms related to estate planning, probate, trust administration, family, and asset protection.
Contact Us for a Consultation
Let us represent you interest, prevent problems from occurring, and resolve any issues that may arise throughout the real estate transaction.