San Diego Real Estate Attorney
Shamon law represents both commercial- and residential real estate clients. Our San Diego real estate lawyers create, review, negotiate contracts and provide litigation services. Whether you are a landlord, homebuyer, or business owner, you need a sharp lawyer representing your interests at the real estate table.
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What does a real estate lawyer do?
A real estate lawyer in San Diego is responsible for providing legal advice and assistance to clients who are involved in the buying, selling, leasing, or financing of residential or commercial property. Real estate lawyers can provide help with matters ranging from contract negotiations and title disputes to zoning issues and litigation. They are knowledgeable about local laws and regulations that affect real estate transactions, such as land-use restrictions or environmental regulations. Real estate lawyers can also help clients with tax issues, such as filing property taxes or navigating the capital gains tax process. Finally, real estate lawyers can provide advice and assistance on mortgages and foreclosure proceedings.
Common Types of Real Estate Litigations Cases We Handle
As representatives of commercial and residential real estate buyers and sellers, Shamon Law handles various issues, from transactions to dispute resolution to litigation. These represent some of the most frequent real estate work we handle:
- Buyer/Seller Disputes
- Fraud and Misrepresentation
- Landlord and Tenant Law
- Landlord Representation
- Tenants Rights
- Lease Assignment and Subletting
- Negotiation Purchase and Sale Contracts
- Financing Disputes and Litigation
Often, buyers and sellers find themselves in dispute before or after the completion of a sale. For instance, buyers often allege a breach of contract after a failed transaction, such as when the seller declines to close escrow. The buyer then sues to enforce the contract or seek liquidated damages.
Our firm guides clients through the dispute process and seeks avenues to settle the matter. However, if the other party remains intransigent, we can litigate the breach of contract claim.
Fraud and Misrepresentation
Fraud and misrepresentation are all too common in real estate. One of the more common examples is when a seller neglects to disclose defects on the property. The buyer often discovers these after taking possession.
California law requires the disclosure of certain material aspects of the property’s condition. In many cases, asserting a lack of knowledge of the condition is insufficient defense because the seller should have known.
Shamon Law provides an extensive analysis of fraud and misrepresentation claims. Not every buyer’s dissatisfaction after the sale qualifies as fraud or misrepresentation. So our attorneys provide an honest opinion of whether a claim has validity and the likely outcome in court.
Based on our analysis, we negotiate settlements or litigate.
Landlord and Tenant Law
Strictly tailored statutes govern landlord and tenant relations in California. The law protects landlords against non-payment and property damage. It also imposes statutory obligations upon the landlord, such as providing heating, repairing certain defects, and following a legal process before evicting tenants and removing their property.
A statutory obligation cannot be overcome through a contract clause running counter to the law.
For example, a landlord cannot defeat a claim that he failed to provide a habitable home by presenting a contract stating he is exempt from that responsibility.
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Difficulties with tenants eat into a landlord’s bottom line. We understand that a risk is posed to the landlord’s investment when a tenant fails to pay rent or refuses to comply with lease covenants. Therefore, we urgently respond to bring the tenant back into compliance or evict them.
Regardless of whether the landlord ultimately evicts the tenant, the legal process must start without delay. Statutory protections require notice to be served to tenants before any legal action can ensue. Once the required notices are delivered, a months-long eviction court process must be completed.
Serving notice gains leverage for the landlord because the clock starts ticking toward a court date and eventual order to vacate. Often, the tenant comes back into compliance to stop the eviction process.
However, some tenants refuse to pay and comply with lease terms but maintain possession of the property. In those cases, we can seek removal and liquidated damages.
When a tenant defaults on a lease, he still has the legal right to possess the property until a court order to vacate is served. In some cases, the problem is financial, and the tenant can no longer afford the rent.
Often, we can negotiate an early termination of the lease. However, it is in the landlord’s best interest to have the defaulting tenant leave voluntarily and avoid protracted litigation.
Tenants also have issues with landlords defaulting on their obligations. We welcome tenants to contact us if they are having trouble with their landlords. Our real estate attorneys can advise on your rights, obligations, and legal options.
Foreclosures are far more complex than evictions, and the stakes are usually much higher. The lender has substantial capital, and the borrower can lose their home and equity. While these cases can be resolved through the foreclosure process to eviction, it is often in both parties’ interests to reach a settlement that cures the default.
Options for curing the default include payment plans, loan workouts, and loan modifications. Usually, both parties lose in foreclosure unless they settle.
When settlements fail, the borrower often declares bankruptcy. In a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the borrower seeks court approval of a plan to cure the default over time, usually in three to five years. Chapter 7 is a liquidation bankruptcy where the borrower seeks to discharge his debts and walk away from home.
Homeowners can keep their homes in Chapter 7 if they qualify for California’s Homestead exemption.
Lease Assignment and Subletting Negotiation
Assignment of the remainder of a lease to another party can benefit the landlord and the tenant. Sometimes, tenants’ plans change, and they need to move sooner than expected.
For instance, they may transfer jobs or have some change in their personal lives. Rather than breaking the lease or buying it out, the tenant can find another party to occupy the property for the remainder of the term.
Landlords can make their properties more attractive to potential renters by allowing for subleases. Many tenants may opt for shorter or less expensive accommodations if they feel they may be locked into a lease.
In addition, landlords can avoid the expensive eviction process and a long-term vacant unit when tenants opt to sublet rather than default. Also, this places the burden on finding a new tenant on the renter, saving the landlord time and money.
Shamon Law helps tenants and landlords negotiate sublease terms so everyone can save time and money.
Purchase and Sale Contracts
Contract negotiation is vital in profitable real estate deals for commercial or residential properties. If a dispute occurs later, the language in your contract may determine who a court favors. While statutes may decide some disputes, most purchase and sale contract cases hinge on the contract’s wording.
At Shamon Law, our real estate lawyers review contracts word for word and demand changes to any section that places our clients at a disadvantage. Knowing what to change requires understanding the real estate litigation process in California. Knowing the likely rulings that the contract language would engender, we can strike the unfavorable clauses and add new ones that benefit our clients.
Creating precisely worded contracts also helps avoid time-consuming and expensive litigation. Part of a contract negotiation ensures that each party understands the agreement entirely and that all rights and obligations are understood. Without a carefully drawn document, a misunderstanding can trigger a dispute that costs both parties.
For instance, real estate contracts stipulate the performance of certain actions, set timelines, and contain potential remedies to non-performance. Often, a real estate contract will specify the following:
- Liquidated Damages Provisions
- Escrow Deposit Procedures
- Broker or Agent Roles and Compensation
- Rights of Redemption
Financing Disputes and Litigation
Shamon Law has represented lenders and borrowers in financing disputes and litigation. Most disputes are avoided by a strong contract negotiation and understanding of the loan’s terms. Nonetheless, we occasionally run into situations where one party refuses to comply with the terms or has acted inappropriately.
We negotiate to resolve these disputes and litigate them when negotiations fail.
Easements grant access to a portion of another’s property for a specific purpose. They may be granted to individuals or organizations, such as your neighbors or a utility company.
For example, if you live in an area with limited public road access, your neighbor may need to use your private road to get to the public one. In that case, he can apply for an easement that gives him the right to traverse your property but only to access the highway.
The neighbor violates the easement if he uses the portion of the property granted for a different purpose. For instance, he cannot park his car on your private road or engage in any other activity except driving to the highway.
In addition, the easement restricts his movements while on your property to the access road. If he strays from this area, he violates the law.
How To Find a Right Real Estate Lawyer?
When finding a good real estate lawyer in San Diego, you want to make sure you choose one who is knowledgeable and experienced. Here are some tips for finding the right lawyer for your needs:
- Research: Start by researching lawyers in your area. Look into their qualifications, experience, past cases they’ve handled, and reviews from past clients. You can also ask friends and family for referrals.
- Schedule a Consultation: Once you’ve narrowed down your list of potential lawyers, schedule an initial consultation to get to know them better. Ask questions about their experience and approach to real estate law, and be sure to discuss any particular concerns you may have.
- Choose the Right Lawyer: After talking with multiple lawyers, select the one that you feel is the best fit for your needs. Make sure to review their fees and any other costs associated with their services before making a final decision.
When selecting a real estate lawyer in San Diego, it is important to look for someone with years of experience and established credentials. Ensure to inquire about their qualifications and review any past cases they have handled. Additionally, ask questions about their approach to handling real estate transactions and if there are any potential obstacles that may arise during the process. It is also important to compare fees and other costs associated with their services. Choosing the right real estate lawyer will ensure that you get the best legal representation for your needs.
Contact a Top-Rated San Diego Real Estate Lawyer Today
Real estate transactions have high stakes. You want the best possible legal advice when signing a contract. In addition, should things go wrong, you need a top-flight litigation team to work on your behalf.
Contact Shamon Law for a real estate law consultation.
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San Diego Real Estate Lawyer FAQs
Real estate attorneys help commercial and residential clients avoid the pitfalls of real estate transactions, resolve disputes, and litigate claims.
Representation from a real estate lawyer is recommended when buying or selling a home. Contracts contain many details, and if language unfavorable to you is built into the document, you could lose important legal protections.
Easements give your neighbors the right to traverse your property for a specific reason, such as using your private road because it is the only access to the main road. The easement gives them no right to ruin your landscaping.
If they are using your property for a different reason than specified by the easement or are accessing an unspecified part of the property, they are violating the law.
In this situation, you may have recourse for the damaged landscaping.
Generally speaking, one owner cannot charge another owner rent, and each owns the property and has the right to use it.