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Keeping owners, managers, and stakeholders up to date on issues affecting their businesses.

Viewing posts in "Real Estate/Leases".

Lease, License or Easement?

Clients need to use or let others use real property in ways that occasionally defy easy characterization. Most everyone understands that if you want to occupy a suite in an office building for five years, you sign a “lease”; that you give an “easement” to the utility company to get service to your home; that you occupy a hotel room, parking ramp, or a college football game under a “license.” But what if a company needs its employees to park in its next-door neighbor’s parking lot? Or if a church wants to permit another group to regularly hold meetings in its space? What if a municipality wants to let cell phone providers put antennas on its water towers? And what about billboards?

Uh Oh! Inadvertent Amendments to “Executory” Contracts

Many of you are doing business under what are called “executory” contracts: those in which the parties have promised to engage in some future action. (Contrast these to “executed” contracts which, once signed, have been fully performed with no promise of future performance.) Executory contracts, such as leases and offers to purchase, are common in real estate law.

Avoid Platted Easements

Every developer who subdivides property, by plat or certified survey map (both of which I’ll refer to as “plats,”), eventually has to deal with the question of how to make provision for necessary utility easements. Frequently, municipalities, civil engineers, and surveyors suggest granting easements by placing a notation on the face of the plat itself. To do so avoids the need to negotiate, sign, and record separate easement agreements with each utility provider. Problem solved, right?

Option or Right of First Refusal?

It is not uncommon for non-attorneys to be confused regarding the differences between option agreements and rights of first refusal. Understanding the nature of both arrangements helps to ensure that you can secure rights that are most advantageous under a given set of circumstances.