Property Law

Property LawBuy/Sell agreements and purchase offers. Deeds. Landlord Tenant Issues. Leases, evictions, security deposits and improper or self-help evictions. Land Contracts. Property Rights. Arrangements when generations move in together. Lady Bird Deeds. These sort of things crop up in the field of property law. The Place for Good Counsel can help.

A few words can make all the difference on a deed. Do you know the difference between a joint tenancy with rights of survivorship, a tenancy in common, or tenancy by the entirety? Have non-lawyers urged you to add a child’s name to your deed? Do you want to know more about a “Lady Bird” or Land Title 9.3 deed? Are you a landlord or a tenant unsure of your rights or responsibilities?

If you are buying or selling property, do you understand the purchase offer and agreement? It is very likely that 99 per cent of your rights and remedies are locked in at that signing! So if you are blithely signing a “form” or pre-printed agreement don’t let yourself be rushed—read it over at home before signing. Better yet, involve an attorney in creating or responding to a purchase offer, or at least review the document briefly with an attorney before you sign.

In Michigan, “oral” or “handshake” real estate deals are seldom enforceable except under very rare circumstances. When dealing with real estate—often one of the bigger financial transactions you make in life—get it in writing. But be mindful, because once you have signed, the document almost always controls. And this is generally true even if you were rushed or pressured or didn’t understand what you signed (there are some exceptions for outright fraud or duress, and other rare circumstances, but the burden of proof is high).

What about landlord tenant law? Are you protected? Have you done it right? Are you familiar with check in lists, security deposits, late fees, leases, check out or vacating issues, evictions, and conversions, the truth-in-renting act, a landlord’s duty to keep a rental habitable, and so on? There are some good resources for these issues, included on our website (via the resource links). Visiting an attorney first, or at the first sign of trouble, often makes sense though. Both landlords and tenants have learned expensive lessons the hard way by “doing-it-themselves” or being far too informal in these arrangements.

Why don’t you make an appointment with us, if you have concerns or questions?

Lansing Real Estate Attorney Bradley A. Vauter