Real Estate Transactions and Finance
Weiss & Weiss has extensive experience in conducting all types of commercial and residential real estate transactions. We represent individuals in a wide range of residential transactions involving cooperative and condominium apartments and houses. Our clients may be buying their first home or selling a house in which their family has lived for decades. Our attorneys pride themselves in being sensitive to our clients’ needs. For first time purchasers, we listen to all questions that may arise and promptly explain all portions of the procedure. We enjoy becoming the “concierge” to those who are moving into areas with which we are familiar. Not only do we provide legal expertise in concluding our client’s transaction, but we also remain available to our clients after the closing to respond to inquiries with respect to vendors to use for the property and personal references needed for such services as physicians, dentists and the like. We are also sensitive to the notion that some clients are selling a property because of unhappy circumstances such as marital dissolution, financial difficulties and death. Our attorneys provide a sympathetic sounding board to such clients in order to assist them in navigating difficult circumstances.
Our attorneys are pleased to maintain strong professional relationships with many real estate agents and brokers in the New York metropolitan area. Because we appreciate the effort employed by a skilled real estate agent in bringing the parties to a transaction together, our attorneys enjoy numerous referrals from the real estate professionals in our community. Once a client obtains an accepted offer and depending on whether we represent the buyer or the seller in a particular transaction, our services include preparing and negotiating contracts, ordering the title report with survey or lien search and evaluating same in order that clear legal title will be delivered at closing, drafting and negotiating closing documents, completing documents that may be required to resolve title issues and arranging for them to be approved by the title company prior to closing, preparing the closing statement, calculating the monies required to close and conveying delivery instructions to the client and accompanying our client to the closing, where we discuss and explain the documents being executed.
We will also assist in satisfying loan conditions so that the parties will be prepared to close as soon as possible. For instance, in a purchase transaction, we will be in close contact with the client’s mortgage broker or loan officer to facilitate the issuance of the loan commitment. Once the loan commitment has been issued, we will ensure compliance with all closing requirements, such as obtaining homeowner’s insurance and any conditions that are particular to our client, such as demonstrating proof of source of the downpayment funds. At the closing, we will confirm that the closing documents comply with the terms of the loan commitment. We order loan payoff letters for transactions where a seller’s loan is being paid off and confirm that the payment expected by the lender is consistent with the expectations of the seller. If there is a discrepancy, we resolve same prior to closing. At closing, we review the mortgage satisfaction document presented by the payoff lender to confirm that it properly discharges the mortgage. After the closing, we follow to insure that the mortgage satisfaction has been properly recorded.
In a loan refinance transaction, we will also coordinate obtaining a Consolidation, Extension and Modification Agreement (“CEMA”) (as necessary to save New York State mortgage tax) along with an Assignment of Mortgage. Should another mortgage be recorded against the property, we will obtain a Subordination Agreement from an existing secondary lender, whereby such lender acknowledges that it continues to hold secondary lien position. Our attorneys are skilled at drafting loan documents for private loans and other special situations, such as mortgage modifications, as needed by our clients. We commonly represent private lenders who require our services in drafting the complete collection of loan documents required to document the loan that they have negotiated with the borrower.
Our partners have also represented major institutional lenders such as CitiMortgage, Inc., Wells Fargo Bank, JP Morgan Chase Bank, Bank of America, HSBC Bank (USA), Washington Mutual Bank, National City Bank, Community Preservation Corporation and Credit Suisse First Boston. With respect to our finance practice, our partners have participated in transactions involving office buildings, hotels and other commercial properties. When closing such commercial transactions, we conduct due diligence by reviewing property leases and vendor agreements, obtaining tenant estoppel documents, providing subordination, attornment and non-disturbance agreements, drafting and negotiating contracts of sale, and preparing closing and loan documents. Among other activities, we draft building loan agreements consistent with New York State lien law.
We also prepare and negotiate documents ancillary to real estate and finance transactions. Brokerage agreements are prepared by our attorneys so that all of the rights and obligations of the parties to the transaction are identified. For instance, an entity such as a limited liability company may require formation to embark on an intended transaction. We will draft the operating agreement and other documents necessary for such entity as well as obtain an employer identification number for the entity. Further, once a property is owned, we may draft a property management agreement with the managing agent for the property.