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Category Archives: Real Estate

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Washington Supreme Court Holds that State Statutes of Limitations Do Not Apply in Arbitration

Posted in Real Estate

Authored by:  Jonathan Lloyd, Stephen M. Rummage, Daniel M. Waggoner, and Maya Yamazaki Yesterday, in a 5-4 decision, the Washington Supreme Court ruled that Washington state statutes of limitations do not apply to claims brought in arbitration, absent specific contractual language to the contrary. In particular, the Court found those statutes, which specifically require that… Continue Reading

KOIN Center History: The Paul Principle

Posted in Real Estate

One of the largest commercial real estate transactions in Portland history was completed at the end of December 2009 when American Pacific International Capital purchased the office portion of KOIN Center. The KOIN Center is Portland’s ninth largest office building with 415,425 square feet and its largest mixed-use project in a single building. While terms… Continue Reading

Legislation to affect lending

Posted in Real Estate

As published in The Daily Journal of Commerce The 2010 special session of the Oregon Legislature resulted in two bills that will impact real estate lending in Oregon. Both came out of the Committee on Consumer Protection and Governmental Accountability and are intended to address consumer protection problems that have arisen during the mortgage crisis…. Continue Reading

LEED vs. Passive House: What’s the difference?

Posted in Real Estate

As published in The Daily Journal of Commerce As a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Accredited Professional, I readily defend LEED’s standard and certification to critics who question its alleged greenness and whether it lives up to its hype. “You get points for including bike parking spaces?” they protest. “C’mon!” Nonetheless, I stand by… Continue Reading

The Creditors’ Rights Endorsement, a Thing of the Past?

Posted in Real Estate

Authored by:  Elisabeth Woare The creditors’ rights endorsement, an endorsement to a lender or owner’s title policy which provides coverage against challenges to a transfer of title as a result of a fraudulent conveyance, fraudulent transfer or preferential transfer, appears to have been essentially eliminated by the title insurance industry earlier this month. Citing the current… Continue Reading

Standard Lease Forms Aren’t Always Best

Posted in Real Estate

As published in The Daily Journal of Commerce Vacancy rates for commercial space, already high, continue to increase. Traditional long-term tenants are in short supply. Out of necessity, landlords are inventing new occupancy arrangements. These creative solutions, however, often require special kinds of occupancy agreements. Common examples include pop-up stores, shared offices, government agencies, and… Continue Reading

New Seattle Ordinance Requires Building Owners to Report Annually on Energy Efficiency

Posted in Real Estate

Authored by:  Jim Greenfield, and Lauren Giles In an ordinance adopted January 25, 2010 (Council Bill No. 116731) and signed by the Mayor on February 4, 2010 (Ordinance 123226), the Seattle City Council created new energy efficiency reporting requirements for owners of nonresidential and multi-family buildings located in the City of Seattle. The ordinance adopted by… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Holds Condo Defect Claims Subject to Arbitration

Posted in Real Estate

In an important decision, on December 24, 2009, the Washington Supreme Court held that claims under the Washington Condominium Act (WCA) are subject to arbitration despite provisions in the Act requiring judicial resolution of claims where condominium owners agree to arbitrate disputes in their purchase and sale agreements. The case is Satomi Owners Ass’n v. Satomi,… Continue Reading

Municipalities Shut Down Haunted Houses as “Unsafe Structures”

Posted in Real Estate

If your Halloween festivities include building a haunted house, take care to comply with any local regulations that apply to the structures or your attraction could be shut down. Examples abound this time of year. Officials in Tonawanda, New York, have shut down one haunted house that had become a 15-year long tradition in its neighborhood. In an… Continue Reading

Central Portland Commercial Development Strategy

Posted in Real Estate

The Portland Business Alliance Development Committee, a subcommittee of the Central City Standing Committee, and the Urban Land Institute Commercial Development Committee convened a joint effort to craft recommendations and inform the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability as it begins the process of updating the 25–year Central Portland Plan. This is occurring because the Bureau of… Continue Reading

Program Created for Transfer of Development Rights in Puget Sound Region

Posted in Real Estate

The legislature has recently authorized a regional program for the Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) among a number of Puget Sound jurisdictions, including King, Kitsap, Snohomish and Pierce Counties and the municipalities within them. This legislation (click here for HB 1172 and the final session law) , effective July 26, 2009, amends Chapter 43.362, RCW,… Continue Reading

New Parks Impact Fee Not Offset by Prior Land Dedication

Posted in Real Estate

In a recent impact fees case, Belleau Woods v. City of Bellingham, the Division I Court of Appeals upheld the City of Bellingham’s application of a new park impact fee ordinance to a development that was already conditioned on a land dedication and payment under a separate parks-related development requirement. The Court reaffirmed its prior holdings… Continue Reading

Residential Rescue: Stimulus Help for Homeowners

Posted in Real Estate

Recent federal legislation to provide financial relief to current and prospective homeowners through refinancing, mortgage payment modification, changes in bankruptcy law, and tax credits for first-time homebuyers, addresses four critical consumer issues in today’s real estate market: (1) troubled ownership; (2) imminent default; (3) imminent foreclosure; and (4) first-time purchase. This advisory provides a brief… Continue Reading

U.S. Green Building Council Releases Details on New LEED Version

Posted in Real Estate

  The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) recently announced the details of the much-anticipated Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Version 3 building certification program (LEED v3, also referred to as LEED 2009). LEED, a third-party certification program, is the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings…. Continue Reading

Seattle Tree Preservation: Trees Now Protected on Lots Not Undergoing Development

Posted in Real Estate

In January, we discussed the Seattle City Council’s consideration of Council Bill 116404, which would increase tree protection under the City Code. On February 23, 2009, the City Council passed the ordinance with a vote of 8-1, and the Mayor signed the legislation on March 2nd. This ordinance limits removal of “exceptional trees” (as defined in… Continue Reading

Permit for Day Care Center Denied Based on “Noise Generated by Laughter and Screaming of Young Children” and Traffic

Posted in Real Estate

In this March 3, 2009 decision, the Kitsap County Hearing Examiner denied a Conditional Use Permit for a day care center and school in a rural area near Port Orchard based on the Examiner’s finding that "[t]he proposal would be materially detrimental to uses or property in the immediate vicinity, and would not be compatible… Continue Reading

Keeping Your Real Estate Lender Happy: How to Increase Your Chances of Passing Those Periodic Property Inspections

Posted in Real Estate

If you have a commercial real estate loan, the loan documents probably give the lender the right to conduct periodic property inspections. And in today’s economy, lenders are taking a hard look at the collateral securing their loans. Loan documents often give lenders certain remedies if there are concerns about the property, such as allowing the lender… Continue Reading

Changes in Freddie Mac Credit Requirements for Multifamily Mortgage Loans

Posted in Real Estate

Freddie Mac is revising its credit requirements for its multifamily mortgage loan programs effective as of February 2, 2009. Although the term sheets have not yet been updated on the Freddie Mac website, we have been told that the changes will include increasing the minimum debt coverage ratios and decreasing the maximum loan to value ratios on various types… Continue Reading

Seattle Tree Preservation: Proposed Expansion of City Tree Protection Ordinance

Posted in Real Estate

The Seattle City Council is currently considering legislation that would increase the number of trees within the City that are protected under City regulations, and could affect the development potential of many lots within the City. The proposed ordinance (council bill 116404) would expand existing tree protections to include sites not undergoing development, would prohibit… Continue Reading

Real Estate Securities

Posted in Real Estate

In the challenging real estate market that the entire country is facing, many developers and real estate purchasers are looking for less conventional ways to finance their projects. Please see the link below to an article that describes several ways to finance projects with what I call “Real Estate Securities.” www.dwtrealestatelawnw.com/Portland Bus Journal 8-31-07.pdf