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Real Estate

Real Estate Issues
Our office has become a resource for several area title companies that have had “sticky” issues or clients that actually need assistance through the court processes for a variety of real estate related issues.

For example, we handle more property tax appeals than any other office in Northern Michigan. We have successfully handled matters through local Boards of Review; appeals to the Michigan Tax Tribunal, the equivalent of “tax court” for real property taxes; uncapping/property tax increase matters, going all the way up to the Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court on occasion. The dramatic drop in property values has the net effect of many people paying more than they should for the taxes on their real property. We are normally very busy during the March Boards of Review and then the follow-up appeals to the Michigan Tax Tribunal, which can take a year or more.

We also handle a number of landlord/tenant issues, representing apartment complexes from the landlord side of things, as well as tenants who have issues with their land owner in a rental. Residential tenancies are areas ripe with “landmines” for a landlord to step on if they do not properly handle a tenant’s security deposit, address damages that occur in a timely fashion, etc. Many landlords should have their lease reviewed, as too many, unfortunately simply print out what they find on some website or even are provided bad information from other sources that do not comply with Michigan Law.

The purchase or sale of a home is something that often deals with the largest single investment in one’s life. Please have legal counsel review offers or buy-sell agreements before you sign. Too often the “horse is out of the barn door” by the time we have a chance to assist. We also are a full service firm with regard to any type of real estate transactions involving deeds or land contracts. Sometimes access issues or boundary disputes also occur with regard to the occasional neighborhood or what once was a neighborly dispute that degenerated into litigation. We can help.

Many real estate issues are related to estate planning, in that to prevent uncapping and the increased long term ownership cost of property, the adjustment of title through joint tenancies is now something that should be considered. This is a result of appeals that we took up to the Court of Appeal and eventually the Supreme Court. Call us with all of your real estate questions.