Category Archives: Real Property Transactions

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California Housing Legislation 2020

Governor Gavin Newsom just signed a number of housing bills into law that were passed by the Legislature this session ending on August 31, 2020.  Due to the severe scheduling constraints placed on lawmakers by the COVID-19 pandemic among other challenges, the Legislature was only able to pass a small number of bills related to … Continue Reading

Residential Eviction Protections and California Consumer Financial Protections Pass Muster During 2020 Legislative Session

During the eleventh hour of the 2020 legislative session, the California Legislature approved 2 significant bills in response to the COVID-19 pandemic with the potential to have far-reaching ramifications for mortgage servicers.… Continue Reading

Splitting The Roll – Commercial And Industrial Property Owners May Face Significant California Property Tax Increases Starting As Early As The 2022-2023 Fiscal Year

California’s Proposition 13 prevents the assessed value of California real property from increasing by more than 2% per year, unless there is a change of ownership or completion of new construction.  On November 3, 2020, California voters will decide whether most commercial and industrial property should be removed from the protections of Proposition 13, with … Continue Reading

Navigable Waters Protection Rule: How are the “Waters of the United States” Being Defined?

On January 23, 2020, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers issued the Navigable Waters Protection Rule (the “2020 Rule”), which includes a revised definition of the “waters of the United States” subject to federal regulation under the Clean Water Act.[1] The revisions in the 2020 Rule come … Continue Reading

Tenant Protection Act (AB 1482) – COMPLIANCE GUIDE

In the fourth quarter of 2019, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law a package of housing-related legislation that included 18 individual bills. Within this package, there were a significant number of important changes aimed at addressing the statewide housing crisis through a variety of measures, including, among others mechanisms, upzoning, approval streamlining and tenant … Continue Reading

Start Spreadin’ the News: California Court Says No to New York, New York; Rejects Forum Selection Clause

Sinatra may have found success in the city that never sleeps, but a California court has just made it more difficult for any party doing business with a California resident to do the same. At least, when it comes to resolving disputes without a jury in a New York courtroom, or in the courtroom of … Continue Reading

Statewide Residential Rent Control Passed In California

The California Legislature has passed AB 1482 providing for comprehensive statewide residential rent control and eviction protections and sent it to the Governor for signature, which is expected. Commencing January 1, 2020, AB 1482 prohibits a landlord of a residential property from increasing the gross rental rate more than five percent (5%) plus the percentage … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Takes Back Takings: Knick v. Township of Scott

The Supreme Court recently issued its long-awaited ruling in Knick v. Township of Scott, concluding that a plaintiff alleging that local governments have violated the Takings Clause under the Fifth Amendment may seek relief directly in federal court, as a constitutional violation occurs at the time of the taking without payment, even if just compensation … Continue Reading

Commercial Lease Guaranties From Foreign Entities: What You Need to Know to Safeguard Your Security

In connection with a commercial lease with an international company, a commercial landlord is often asked to accept U.S.-based subsidiary as the tenant entity.  The U.S. subsidiary often does not have independent financials or credit history, leading the landlord to request additional lease security.  In this context, the landlord may be offered a guaranty from … Continue Reading

Important Alert for Commercial Owners/Landlords and Brokers/Agents: Changes to California Dual Agency Disclosure Laws Effective January 1, 2015

Effective January 1, 2015, California law requires real estate brokers and agents to provide their clients and prospective clients with specific new disclosures, including (1) an initial disclosure form regarding the nature of agency relationships, which is typically provided at the time a listing agreement is entered into; and (2) an additional disclosure form to … Continue Reading

Principal Architects on Residential Projects Liable for Construction Defects Outside Their Control; Developers and Owners May Pay the Price

Beacon Residential Community Assoc. v. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP (Cal. Supreme Court., 07/03/2014, S208173) On July 3, 2014, the California Supreme Court decided the much watched case Beacon Residential Community Assoc. v. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP.  The court held that the “principal architect” “owes a duty of care to future homeowners in the design … Continue Reading

Changes To California Title 24 Energy Use Requirements Effective July 1, 2014

What You Need to Know: On July 1, 2014, 2013 CALGreen, Part 11, Title 24, of the California Code of Regulations will go into effect. As a result, certain nonresidential additions and alterations will trigger compliance with more stringent energy-saving measures for plumbing, electrical, lighting and heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems. It is expected … Continue Reading

The Covenant of Quiet Enjoyment – A Bang or a Whimper

By Michael Gibson Almost all commercial leases in the United States include a covenant of quiet enjoyment. At its simplest level, the protection afforded by the covenant to a tenant is straightforward: a landlord must not interfere with a tenant’s use and enjoyment of the leased premises. Tenants, however, have attempted to utilize the covenant … Continue Reading

Brokers – Thou Shalt Not Accept Payments From More Than One Source In Connection With a Mortgage Loan

By Sherwin F. Root Mortgage lenders and brokers are aware that the new regulations on loan originator compensation (part of Regulation Z) will go into effect on April 1. One aspect of those regulations that has received little attention until just recently is that if the consumer pays the loan originator directly (which may be the … Continue Reading

Homeowner Associations and Members Not Necessarily Bound By Arbitration Provisions in CC&Rs or in Related Purchase Agreement Where Developer is Initial Declarant

Pinnacle Museum Tower Association v. Pinnacle Market Development (US) LLC, No. D055422 (4th Dist. July 30, 2010) By Michael Wilmar and Aaron Kleven Homeowners and homeowner associations are not necessarily bound by arbitration provisions in a declaration of covenants, conditions and restrictions, or in a related purchase agreement, where the developer is the initial and … Continue Reading

Recovery Zone Facility Bonds May Not Provide the Economic Stimulus Local Agencies Hoped For

By Claudia Gutierrez On February 17, 2009, President Obama signed into law the $787 billion stimulus bill, The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). As part of ARRA, Recovery Zone Facility Bonds (RZFB) were introduced as a groundbreaking type of tax-exempt private activity bond that would tremendously increase financing opportunities for private development … Continue Reading

As of March 8, 2010, Major Title Insurers Will No Longer Underwrite Policies to Protect Creditors’ Rights

By Aaron Sobaski & Robyn Christo On February 3, 2010, the American Land Title Association ("ALTA") Board of Governors unanimously voted to withdraw and decertify its Form 21-06 Creditors’ Rights Endorsement ("Endorsement"). The California Land Title Association ("CLTA") Board of Governors quickly followed suit, withdrawing its own Endorsement (Forms 131 and 131-6) on February 16, … Continue Reading

Changes to Penalty for Failure to Timely File CA Entity Change in Ownership Statement

California recently enacted SB 816 to change the penalty provisions for failure to timely file a transfer of property ownership statement with the State Board of Equalization (the "BOE") upon a change in control or change in ownership of a corporation, partnership, limited liability company, or other legal entity. Note that these new rules apply … Continue Reading

Modifications of home loans under government program will not adversely affect REMICs

By Matthew Richardson The IRS recently issued "safe harbor" guidance that home loans modified under the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) will not adversely affect real estate mortgage investment conduits (REMICs). Without this guidance, payments from the US government to lenders and servicers of home loans under HAMP may have resulted in a 100% penalty … Continue Reading

Landlords Keep Your House In Order – Claims For Past Due Rents Dismissed Where Certificate Of Occupancy Not Obtained

By Douglas E. Wance Espinoza v. Calva, ____ Cal. App.4th ____ (December 16, 2008, Case No. G040006, Fourth Appellate District, Division Three) In an unlawful detainer action, the Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s award of past due rent under a lease where the landlord had failed to secure a required certificate of occupancy … Continue Reading

Homestead exemption does not apply to Home owned by single shareholder corporation

California Coastal Commission, etc., et al. v. Michael A. Allen, ___ Cal. App. 4th ___ (Oct. 1, 2008, Case No. B197974)   By David Collins   In this case, California Court of Appeal affirmed an order for sale of dwelling pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure section 704.740 (part of the state’s Enforcement of … Continue Reading

Court May Not Imply Essential Terms Regarding Time and Payment to Make Option Agreement Enforceable if Parties Continued to Negotiate Those Terms After Execution of Agreement.

Patel v. Liebermensch (Aug. 21, 2007, D048582 [4th Dist, Div. 2]) __ Cal.App.4th __; By William M. Flieshhacker In this case, the Fourth District Court of Appeal of California addressed the issue of the enforceability of an option contract that did not include essential terms regarding the time and manner of payment.  The court held … Continue Reading

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