Real Estate Archives | Attorney Aaron Hall

Category Archives for Real Estate

Tenant vs. Landlord: Mold or Asbestos in Rental Property

Does mold or asbestos relieve a tenant from paying rent to a landlord in Minnesota? Rental Property Must be ‘Habitable’ Under Minnesota Statutes, implied in every oral and written residential lease are three covenants or obligations of the landlord. See Minn. Stat. § 504B.161 (formerly § 504.18), subd. 1. Specifically, this statute provides that In […]

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Free Renter Legal Help: Lawyers Defend Minnesota Tenant Rights

Here are some outstanding resources for renters (informally referred to as “renters”) and attorneys representing tenants against landlords in Minnesota. Let’s face it, landlords often have the advantage because they select the lease they require of tenants. For example, I regularly represent landlords. However, tenants have some strong law on their side. These resources are […]

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The Torrens Title System Minnesota: The Short Course for Surveyors

August 2009 A surveyor colleague of mine came back from a continuing education class a while ago and said that the lawyer instructor wished out loud that the Torrens system would go away. The lawyer, like some surveyors, did not like dealing with the Torrens system. For many surveyors and lawyers, the Torrens registration system […]

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Is Real Estate Broker/Agent Fee-Sharing Legal in Minnesota?

Among real estate agents and brokers, some types of referral fees, commissions, and fee sharing are permitted. However, other types of fee sharing are prohibited by Minnesota real estate statutes and regulations. Whether fee-splitting is a “legal commission” or “illegal kickback” depends on the context. Minnesota’s primary authority on sharing real estate agent and broker […]

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Minnesota Transfer-on-death deed (TODD)

A transfer-on-death deed (TODD) in Minnesota is a real estate deed that transfers ownership of the property to the named beneficiary upon the owner’s death. TODDs are governed by Minnesota Statutes § 507.071. A transfer-on-death deed allows for the transfer of title of real property to a named beneficiary at the death of the owner, or […]

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Landlord Terms to Strengthen a Lease

In Minnesota, and elsewhere, leases are standard contracts, but they need to be well written to protect you and your tenants. Rather than using a pre-printed boiler plate lease, consider including provisions that cover these critical areas: Cancellation This is the single most important provision in a corporate or residential real-estate lease. Tenants prefer leases […]

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Negotiating Leases With Start-Up Companies

In the traditional world of commercial leases, established tenants usually rely on their own signatures or those of affiliated guarantors to satisfy landlord credit demands. But in the case of start-up tenants, any credit approach that relies on such devices is sometimes of little value to a landlord–especially since such companies typically have no parent […]

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Slander of Title Claim: Five FAQs

What is slander of title claim? Utterance of false and malicious statements disparaging the title to property in which one has an estate or interest, if the statements are untrue and cause damage, constitutes slander of title. What is required for a slander of title claim? That there was a false statement concerning the real […]

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Three Legal Options to Force Landlord Repairs

We have all had bad landlords. Some raise rent without notice. Others even pursue unfair evictions. Many don’t respond to repair requests.  Tenants can feel powerless. Fortunately, tenants have recourse, especially to force repairs—they can pursue a legal claim against their landlord. Minnesota law provides strong habitability protection for tenants. Specifically, under Minnesota statute, a tenant […]

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Lease Review: Three Key Points for Tenants

Landlords typically propose the form of lease, and typically it is neither possible nor cost effective for a tenant to amend the document. Generally, the bigger the landlord, the less flexible they will be on deviating from their proposed form of lease. So, the job of a tenant is to make sure they are aware of […]

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Six Mistakes Landlords Can Make

  Rental real estate, if managed well, can provide income and tax breaks. But watch out. Problems can arise even with good tenants. Knowing the sources of trouble can help you steer clear of unnecessary problems. Here are six mistakes some landlords make: 1. Inadequate or illegal screening Don’t let a fear of empty units […]

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Rent-to-Own Contracts and Minnesota’s Usury Law

Rent-to-own contracts (sometimes called lease-to-own) allow renters the option to purchase the rented property prior to the end of the lease. Minnesota has strict laws limiting fees with rent-to-own contracts. What is a Rent-to-Own Contract? Minnesota Statutes sections 325F.84, et. seq. applies to rental purchase agreements or “rent-to-own” agreements. It specifically applies to agreement[s] for […]

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Conditional Use Permits

In a municipality, the governing body may choose to issue a conditional use permit for certain types of developments. Minn. Stat. § 462.3595. Getting such a permit allows for a use to be specifically allowed in a zoning district as long as certain standards are met. A conditional use permit leads to land development in […]

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How to Cancel Real Estate Purchase Agreements

Sometimes after a purchase agreement is signed, one of the parties elects to cancel the agreement or is forced to cancel the agreement due to the breach of the other party. There a few ways in Minnesota to cancel a real estate purchase agreement: voluntary cancellation, statutory cancellation, and judicial cancellation. Voluntary Cancellation This is […]

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Commercial Leasing: Letters of Intent

In a commercial context, a letter of intent is usually the first step when entering into a commercial lease. They are usually done without a lot of involvement from lawyers and usually just involve the brokers. They should give brief summaries of most essential terms of the lease and to avoid conflicts in the future, […]

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Minnesota Real Estate Broker & Agent Disputes

Common disputes between Minnesota real estate brokers and their agents include unauthorized practice of law, fraud, broker misconduct, negligence, misrepresentation or failure to disclose material information, breach of duty, payment of commission, escrow money dispute, consumer dissatisfaction, and failure to be licensed. The key statute relevant to real estate broker and agent disputes is Minnesota […]

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Commercial Leases

Owning a business can be complex and stressful. One of the most stressful components is also one of the first stressors an entrepreneur will encounter, and that is finding and finalizing commercial space. It is important that a business owner understands the lease and the terms, so hiring an experienced real estate attorney is crucial […]

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Nonpayment of Rent and Eviction

The Minnesota Supreme Court’s Decision in Housing and Redevelopment Authority of Duluth vs. Brian Lee: Eight Percent Late Fee Limitation Not Preempted by Federal Law The Minnesota Supreme Court recently held that the 8% limitation on late fees that landlords of residential buildings may charge under Minn. Stat. § 504B.177 (2010) is not preempted by […]

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Mortgage Recording Requirements

Strict Compliance with Mortgage Recording Requirements Is Required A foreclosure by advertisement is void if the Assignment Recording Statute, Minnesota Statute § 580.02, is not strictly complied with. In 2013 the Minnesota Supreme Court held that a foreclosing mortgagee must strictly comply with the statutory requirement that all assignments of the mortgage be recorded prior […]

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Plausibility Standard, Not Applicable in Minnesota

Laura L. Walsh vs. U.S. Bank, Minnesota Supreme Court August 6, 2014 Decision The Plausibility Standard for Federal Pleadings Does Not Apply in Minnesota On August 6, 2014, the Minnesota Supreme Court held that there was no compelling reason to depart from the traditional pleading standard for civil actions in Minnesota under that well-established standard, […]

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What Is Property Management? Why Landlords Need Rental Property Management Services

Minnesota attorney Aaron Hall speaks with Tom Sedlack, general manager of 33rd Company, a property management service. Tom explains some of the typical problems landlords run into and how 33rd Company can help solve them.

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Q&A with Brian Call of Rubicon Mortgage Advisors

Minnesota attorney Aaron Hall speaks with Brian Call, president of Rubicon Mortgage Advisors, about Rubicon Mortgage Advisors and the mortgage industry as a whole.

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Class C2 Managed Forest Land: Minnesota Property Tax

This property classification, enacted in 2008, provides a reduced class rate of 0.65 percent to forested property that is subject to a current forest management (stewardship) plan and that meets other requirements. There is no minimum term of enrollment; property will receive the reduced class rate as long as it is enrolled and continues to […]

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Market Value Exclusion on Homestead Property of Disabled Veterans: Minnesota Property Tax

This program provides a market value exclusion for property tax purposes for the homestead property of an honorably discharged veteran who has a service-connected disability rating of 70 percent or higher, surviving spouses of qualifying veterans and service members, and primary family caregivers of qualifying veterans. What is the fair market exclusion? The program provides […]

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1031 Personal Property Exchanges

Overview Personal property refers to all property held for investment or productive use in a trade or business, tangible and intangible, that is not considered real property. See Tables 1 and 2, below. A personal property exchange provides the opportunity to defer capital gains taxes and depreciation recapture. Depreciation recapture is of great concern due […]

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Have We Seen The End of Unreasonable Demands from Land-use Regulators?

Does the U.S. Supreme Court Decision in Koontz v. St. John’s River Water Management District Spell the End of Unjustifiable Concessions by Land-use Regulators? During the last several years, the United States Supreme Court has issued a flurry of important decisions, several of which involve revolutionary shifts in the relationships between people (Defense of Marriage […]

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Real Estate Videos

View a number of real estate videos featuring our firm’s real estate attorneys.

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Do Judgment Liens Take Priority Over Later-Recorded Mortgages?

Does a Judgment Lien Against a Homestead Exempt Property Take Priority Over a Later-Recorded Mortgage? A judgment becomes a lien against the judgment debtor’s real property at the time of docketing.[1] The fact that a judgment becomes a lien when docketed, however, does not mean it has priority over a later-recorded mortgage. The basic rule […]

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Can I Protect My Home From the Judgments of Creditors?

Yes. You can protect your home from the judgment of creditors. Minnesota Statutes Section 510.01 provides an exemption that protects a judgment debtors’ homestead from seizure or sale under legal process.[1] A homestead is defined as the “house owned and occupied by a debtor as the debtor’s dwelling place, together with the land upon which […]

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How to Protect Your Home from Debt Collectors: Minnesota's Homestead Exemption

Can I Protect My Home From the Claims of Creditors? Yes, Minnesota Statutes Section 510.01 provides an exemption that protects a judgment debtors’ homestead from seizure or sale under legal process. Minn. Stat. § 510.01. A homestead is defined as the “house owned and occupied by a debtor as the debtor’s dwelling place, together with […]

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