Jon Goodman hosts a monthly Webcast, a 20 minute webinar for real estate brokers of topical wisdom. Its FREE! There is no CE credit. Our goal is to give you insight into cutting-edge topics tossed out by the ever changing market and law. If you are interested in receiving an email alert when a new webcast is available, please email Brenda Bonilla to add your name to the list.
We plan to webcast once a month.
Past Topics & Recordings:
Jon Goodman’s Employing Broker Webinar– Frascona, Joiner, Goodman and Greenstein, P.C., Attorneys at Law, A Colorado Law Firm
6/26/18: As Is. What does the phrase “As Is” mean in a contract? Learn what it really means.
5/23/18: Earnest Money Going Hard. What does Earnest Money Going Hard mean? This webcast explains when to use this clause/phrase and when not to use it.
3/16/18: Protect Your Buyers from FIRPTA. The federal Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act (“FIRPTA”) generally obligates any person who buys U.S. real estate from a foreign person to escrow 15% of the purchase price from the seller to motivate the foreign seller to file a U.S. tax return. A buyer who fails to comply will be liable for the foreign seller’s unpaid tax, and probably penalties and interest. This webcast will give you a general understanding of how to protect your buyers from FIRPTA. For more FIRPTA details, please read our article Don’t Forget About FIRPTA. For those of you interested in including FIRPTA protection language in your contracts, consider ordering our law firm’s addenda package. For those of you interested in FIRPTA affidavits, please contact Julia.
2/23/18: Property Specific Deed Exceptions. Most general warranty deeds initially prepared by title companies as a scrivener for the brokers have an exception to the grantor’s warranty of title that reads something like: “. . . and except taxes for the year of closing; and except all reservations, rights of way, restrictions and covenants of record.” This “general exception” insulates Seller from liability from the title company’s searching errors and makes the general warranty deed more like a special warranty deed. (See the following webcast that explains the difference between a general warranty deed and a special warranty deed: General Warranty Deed vs. Special Warranty Deed. Section 13 of the Colorado Real Estate Commission approved contract calls for a narrower, “property specific exception,” which merely excepts itemized known title blemishes from the grantor’s general warranty. A property specific exception reads something like: “. . . and except taxes for the year of closing; and except for those encumbrances identified on Exhibit A attached hereto” where Exhibit A mirrors the property specific exceptions from the exception section of the title commitment. Colorado law obligates broker to attempt to have the closing documents prepared consistently with the contract. This webcast walks you through an example where this distinction between a general exception deed and a property specific exception deed makes a difference and explains why most Colorado title companies initially prepare a deed form that is inconsistent with the Colorado Real Estate Commission contract. While this webcast may be useful in wetting your appetite for this topic, the following article will decrease misunderstanding: Property Specific Deed Exceptions.
12/8/17: Why Buyers need Title Review. This webcast explores what false reasoning people might use to rationalize not using a lawyer to review the title when they purchase real estate.
9/29/17: A Counter Proposal Destroys the Offeree’s Power to Accept the Initial Offer. When a Buyer or Seller counters an offer from the other side, it can’t count on having a second bite at the apple. The counterproposal destroys the ability to accept the original offer, even if the acceptance deadline in the original offer has not expired. Watch how this legal notion plays out with real world examples. Related Article: Contract FAQ: Formation & Title.
8/2/17: How to Draft Better Additional Provisions – Part IV. The A, B, C’s of writing additional provisions with examples.
7/12/17: How to Draft Better Additional Provisions – Part III. Recognizing the difference between an affirmative obligation and a contingency. [See article for examples: Drafting Better Contingencies.
6/14/17: How to Draft Better Additional Provisions – Part II. If you cannot accomplish your goal with existing pre-printed language, attempt to supplement the existing language in the pre-printed contract. We illustrate this point with examples.
5/24/17: How to Draft Better Additional Provisions – Part I. Seek to avoid drafting additional provisions at all by using pre-printed language to achieve the same result. We illustrate this point with examples.
4/24/17: How do Buyer’s Enforce Contracts against Balking Sellers? Learn what buyers can do when sellers want to breach the buyer’s contract and move on to a better buyer.
Related Video: 10/26/15: Seller Defaults Just Before Closing.
3/27/17: Letters of Intent. Letters of Intent are more binding than some people realize. They can cause big problems for sellers. Learn how to avoid problems with Letters of Intent in real estate transactions. Additional Resource Article: Legal Ramifications of a Letter of Intent.
2/27/17: Earnest Money Release Revolution. Prior to 2017 the Colorado Real Estate Commission Approved Earnest Money Release form essentially provided for a full release between the buyer and the seller (if both sides signed the earnest money release) subject to a few intuitive exceptions. The 2017 form no longer has an automatic release. Now the party who fills out the form first must choose between the old system or giving buyer and seller the ability to go after the other side (even though buyer and seller agree on how the earnest money should be refunded.) Watch the video and hear about the type of deals where this change can help and hear examples actual problems and feared mischief.
1/25/17: Listing Agreement & Holdover Rights. What are Holdover Rights? When do Holdover Rights Apply? What happens if the old listing agreement does not expire but it is terminated? Who qualifies as a Holdover Buyer?
11/29/16: Bargain and Sale Deed. What is a Bargain and Sale Deed? When should you use a Bargain and Sale Deed? Learn about the difference between a Quit Claim Deed and a Bargain and Sale Deed. Learn of an example of a situation of when to use a Bargain and Sale Deed to solve a problem.
10/18/16: Wire Fraud. Don’t wire your money to criminals. Learn how to avoid getting duped!
8/1/16: General Warranty Deed vs. Special Warranty Deed for Re-Sale Sellers. The market place expects residential re-sale sellers (not builders) to convey title using a general warranty deed. A general warranty deed creates liability for a seller beyond the warranties of a special warranty deed. Learn how sellers can protect themselves from this liability.
5/26/16: Coming Soon Listings. In a tight inventory market, listing brokers are tempted to sell listed property to their own sphere of influence before exposing the property to the whole market. Yet without exposing the property to the whole market, sellers can’t have confidence that they’ve found the highest and best buyer. Learn how to manage the conflicts of interest associated with the “Coming Soon” phenomenon.
4/27/16: Buyers Using Contingencies for Purposes other than they were intended! While the buyer contingencies give buyers wide discretion to terminate contacts, the contingencies are not “free look” contingencies. The buyer must have an objection that fits an appropriate and relevant objection. In the same way that drivers might frequently get away with speeding, buyers might get away with using contingencies inappropriately, especially in a market in which sellers might be able to easily resell the property to someone else. Yet when sellers are disappointed with the buyer back out, all it takes to engage an earnest money battle is for the seller to decline to sign releasing the buyer’s earnest money. Learn how to avoid creating false expectations in your buyers about their ability to back out of a deal. Learn how to assist your Sellers when you suspect contingencies are being misused, and when they should be referred to an attorney.
3/30/16: Builder Contracts in an Appreciating Market. Inventory is extremely low in some markets and demand is returning for new homes. Learn (1) how the contracts from production builders don’t provide a meaningful remedy for builder defaults in an appreciating market; (2) what you can do about it; and (3) how to create reasonable expectations for you buyers.
2/21/16: Escalation Clauses – A Lawyer’s Dream. In markets with shortages of inventory, buyers know that they must aggressively compete for the right properties. Yet purchasers do not want to pay any more than is absolutely necessary to buy the property. Purchasers sometimes submit “escalation” clauses in an attempt to tie up the property without offering much more than the competition. This session explores the pitfalls of escalation clauses and suggests alternatives. Read Jon Goodman’s article, “Escalation Clauses – A Lawyer’s Dream.”
1/25/16: Does a Sale Affect a Tenant’s Lease? When a tenant leases a property for a term, a tenant expects to have the right to use the space for the whole term. If the original landlord sells the building, does the new landlord have the right to terminate the lease? Learn the answer by watching this video.
11/30/15: Buyer Defaults Just Before Closing. Even when a contract clearly spells out the consequences of a buyer defaulting on a contract, it may not be practical for the seller to enforce the consequence. Consider the seller whose buyer needs a week extension to get the loan to close. If the contract does not have a contingency excusing the buyer, the seller might be able to terminate the contract. Killing the contract, however, might not be practical for the seller. Learn about these situations and how to avoid having unrealistic expectations about the power of contracts.
10/26/15: Seller Defaults Just Before Closing. Even when a contract clearly spells out the consequences of a seller defaulting on a contract, it may not be practical for the buyer to enforce the consequence. For example consider the buyer who learns, at the walk-through the day before closing, that the seller blew off the obligation to fix the furnace. The seller’s default may allow the buyer not to kill the contract and sue the seller for damages, specific performance or both. But none of those options may be practical for the buyer. Learn about these situations and how to avoid having unrealistic expectations about the power of contracts.
9/28/15: TRID Patches for Buyers. The conventional wisdom is that the new TRID regulations will make buyer loan approvals more precarious. Additions to contract language which call for an automatic one-time extension for TRID motivated problems are a partial solution. Learn about the options and how to effectively use them.
8/24/15: Updates to CP-46 Disclosure of Adverse Material Facts. The Real Estate Commission adopted Commission Position 46, regarding brokers disclosure of adverse material facts. Jon Goodman discusses the commission’s new position.
7/27/15: 2014 CREC Approved Forms & Seller Carry Financing. The 2014 CREC approved forms essentially eliminate the Seller Carry Financing provisions. Yet, in the right circumstances, Seller Carry Financing might be the best available option for both the seller and the buyer. Understand the options for advancing Seller Carry deals in the coming new era.
6/22/15: Replacement Home Contingencies. One of the ways that Buyers try to make their offers attractive is to give the Seller flexibility. Often the fear of not finding a replacement property inhibits Sellers from going under contract with Buyers.
5/26/15: Specific Performance. Why it Works for Buyers Against Sellers and Not Sellers Versus Buyers. Learn why sellers should generally use their bargaining clout to get things other than a specific performance remedy versus a buyer.
4/20/15: Modified Appraisal Contingencies. In hot markets, it is common for the parties to create appraisal contingencies contemplating that the house might appraise for less than the purchase price. Sometimes Buyer’s argue that these clauses create an obligation for the Seller to lower the price. Learn how to spot and avoid these ambiguities.
3/23/15: “Love Letters” and Fair Housing laws. When there is a drought of supply of residential real estate inventory, some buyers look for a competitive advantage by submitting letters with the offer that attempt to appeal to non-financial seller motivation. Without a conscious strategy of asking the seller to discriminate against anyone, some of these letters are essentially asking seller to discriminate in favor of the buyer on grounds that violate fair housing laws. Learn how to reduce risk from “love letters.”
2/17/15: Buy “Tail Coverage” When you Retire. After professionals retire, they may be sued for alleged wrongs that occurred before retirement. When you retire you need to buy insurance that covers you after you retire. This video explains the need for, and the path to acquire,“tail” insurance.
1/25/15: When NOT to Refer to the Best Attorneys in Town. When Clients of Brokers have legal trouble, the natural instinct is for the Broker to refer to their own lawyer. After all, you know your lawyer is great at solving problems. However, there are times you want to be cautious of contaminating our ability to help YOU the Broker. Learn how to manage those risks and refer responsibly.
12/15/14: Brokerage Relationship Disclosures. Most brokers know that when they are sitting in an open house, they need to make a disclosure to unrepresented buyers. Brokers, however, often fail to follow through. This is a hot button issue for your regulators. Brokers often don’t recognize the need to make other required brokerage relationship disclosures to buyers, tenants, and sellers. Learn how to sharpen your agents’ instincts to spot the need to make the disclosure, and how to ensure CREC compliance.
11/24/14: Ensuring a Cooperating Commission. Sometimes you will help buyers pursue property where neither the seller or the listing broker is offering to pay you a cooperating commission, or the commission offered is otherwise less than the buyer is obligated to pay you. Learn how to negotiate and document someone’s obligation to pay you.
10/27/14: Section 8(a) of RESPA in Two Minutes or Less. Develop an instinct for what kind of joint ventures, MSAs and other kinds of affiliated business arrangements (AfBAs) might withstand scrutiny by the CFPB.
9/22/14: Escrowing Over Mechanic’s and Other Liens to Get Deals Closed. Just because someone records a mechanic’s lien, doesn’t mean that the claim is valid. Mechanic’s liens (and some other liens) don’t always need to be paid at closing. Learn how to use escrows to allow deals to close without paying some liens.
8/25/14: Money Laundering and Real Estate. The practical inability of marijuana entrepreneurs to deposit funds into banks, combined with low interest rates (which reduces the opportunity cost for sellers to hold cash outside of financial institutions) creates pressure to use real estate transaction to launder money. Learn how to spot the red flags of money laundering and the risks associated with it.
7/28/14: Controlling Your Anger At Clients: The nature of being a professional is that our clients occasionally frustrate us, sometimes driving us to the point of anger. Our anger, combined with the ease of e-mails, texts, voice mails and other forms of communication that leave a record causes problems for all professionals. Learn some ideas to decrease the likelihood that you, or someone else at your brokerage firm, will send an ill-advised e-mail to a client or others.
6/23/14: “Coming Soon Phenomenon.” This month the Division of Real Estate published its Commission Position 44, addressing the “Coming Soon Phenomenon.” Learn how to manage the potential conflicts of interest within this issue.
5/19/14: Dangers of E-Signing in a Fast Paced World. E-signing systems are often set up so that when your client executes a document, it automatically gets sent to the other side without first going through you. You don’t have a chance to filter out mistakes. In a multiple offer situation, for example, your seller might execute a counterproposal to the wrong buyer. Learn what you can do to decrease the risks.
4/28/14: Buyers Who Refuse to Acknowledge Death of Real Estate Contract In Markets with Hyper-Shortage of Inventory. What happens when a Buyer refuses to acknowledge the death of a contract? At what point is the Seller free to accept other offers? What happens to the Earnest Money in these scenarios? These situations are typically emotionally charged and volatile, learn the best ways to handle them and minimize the damage for your client.
3/24/14: Buying Property Anonymously. It’s not unusual for Commercial Buyers to want to purchase anonymously, and it’s not uncommon in Residential transactions either! We explore the motives behind incognito purchases, options for accomplishing them, and look at how they affect the transaction.
2/24/14: Demystifying Commercial Real Estate. Commercial real estate isn’t necessarily harder than residential real estate, it’s just different. The first step in wading into commercial real estate is understanding the cultural differences. In this webinar, Jon will discuss the following: Use of Letters of Intent, One Free Look, Documenting Co-operative Commission Obligations, Consequences of Bigger Deals, Culture of Less Regulatory Pressure, Ramifications of Lack of Applicability of RESPA, and Ramifications of Less Acceptance of the Status Quo.
12/16/13: Failure to complete the Seller’s Property Disclosure and the “as is” Language in the contract doesn’t avoid the need to disclose known problems. A November 2013 Colorado Court of Appeals decision in favor of a buyer who bought a home from a renovation entrepreneur hammers home the point that independent of what a contract states, sellers have an obligation to disclose latent material defects of which they are aware. Learn how to apply this rule in the real life situations you face every month.
9/28/13: Recognizing Broker’s Susceptibility to Scams. The natural optimism and goal orientation of Brokers, combined with big rewards from successfully closed deals, makes Brokers susceptible to scams. Learn how to avoid these scams before you’ve wasted too much time or effort.
Red Flags for Brokers:
- Never met with the client in person
- Typically from overseas
- Client represents self as cash buyer
- Client has never actually seen the property, or doesn’t care to until JUST before closing
- May want virtual tour of property created prior to going under contract
- Client says they need to escrow funds with an attorney and resist escrow with a Title Company
9/23/13: Floods and Other Perils Prior to Closing. Learn how section 19.1 of the contract interacts with reality.
6/24/13: You Don’t Know What You’ve Got Til It’s Gone: Legal Issues When Interest Rates Rise.Mortgage Interest Rates have been generally declining for nearly three decades. Many of us have never experienced the legal problems driven by rising interest rates. Learn how to anticipate, avoid, and sometimes make money off interest rate driven problems and opportunities.”
5/13/13: Buyer Replacement Clauses. A seller receives an offer from a buyer with a contingency that makes the seller nervous. Seller is reluctantly willing to accept the offer, but wants the ability to kick buyer #1 out of the deal if seller receives an offer from another buyer who looks more solid than buyer #1, unless buyer #1 fails to remove the contingency (say within 72 hours of notice to buyer #1). Learn how to avoid the mischief caused by what the industry calls “Rights of First Refusal.”
4/22/13: Back Up Contracts. Sellers benefit from competition among multiple buyers, yet you don’t want to sell your listing to more than one buyer at the same time. Refresh your memory about avoiding the traps of back up contracts.
3/25/13: Conflicts of Interest. Brokers know that they are supposed to avoid and disclose conflicts of interest. However, none of us are very good at recognizing our own conflicts of interest. This has become a hot button issue for the Division of Real Estate. This broadcast will help you recognize common conflicts of interest that get brokers in trouble.
1/28/12: Inspection Motivated Seller Concessions; The new Inspection Objection and Inspection Resolution Forms; and the New Commission Position 43. Learn how to navigate the cross currents between these rules, the lending industry’s desire to avoid knowledge of inspection issues, and your clients’ desires to get deals closed.