Real Estate

RealEstatePlanAgents and Brokers.  We have extensive involvement in fee disputes, consumer complaints, and ethical matters before the Ohio Division of Real Estate and Professional Licensing as well as the Columbus Board of Realtors or our clients’ local Board of Realtors.  If you are an agent or broker seeking representation on any of these matters, please feel free to contact us.

Buyers and Sellers.  Although a standard real estate contract may be a good place to start, it may not apply equally to every transaction.  If you are a buyer or seller of a residential property, we would be happy to assist you to ensure your agreement addresses the unique aspects of your purchase or sale.

Commercial Real Estate Transactions.  We have handled numerous disputes between landlords and their tenants, including evictions and breach of contract claims.  We also can address any disputes you may be having with a contractor for goods or services relating to your properties.  If you need assistance in any of these areas, we can help.

Q & A

People with legal issues can post questions to lawyers on Avvo and we have answered some of them. Here are some questions that we have already answered:

Q: Can I break my lease due to failure of landlord to make repairs?: “I co-lease an apartment with a roommate. I notified my landlord in writing 10 months ago that my bedroom ceiling was crumbling and needed repair. Every morning there are pieces of ceiling in my bed. I know this cant be safe for me to be breathing this stuff all night. I have verbally asked about this several times and alI I have got so far are excuses and promises. Can I break my lease because of this? How will this affect my roommate who doesn’t want to leave since his bedroom is fine?”

A: Our response: Leases can be long and tedious documents, but what you are looking for is probably written in the lease. I’m an Ohio attorney but, from a textbook scenario and in most states, the Landlord has certain obligations governed by state law like keeping the leased property safe and habitable and making necessary repairs. I don’t know if Virginia has the same requirements, but probably. Read your Lease. I would not be surprised if you find useful language. Then, you might consider communicating to the Landlord the portions of the Lease you believe he is violating. If you do not feel comfortable pressing for termination of the Lease, I would highly suggest you contact a Roanoke attorney for assistance. As for your roommate, he could be on the hook for the entire rent if you are able to get out. It sounds like you need to have a nice talk and try to join forces to get the ceiling fixed to avoid a situation more unpleasant than crumbs in your bed.
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Q: Can I get out of my lease due to recurring, lifestyle altering problems?: Examples of my problems: Bathroom Ceiling fell in twice for water Kitchen sink regurgitated for three days Light -Lamp in the shower Large hole under kitchen sink Kitchen cabinet can be opened from outside hallway, huge bug problem.
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A: Our response: The Ohio Landlord-Tenant Act, Revised Code Chapter 5321, provides several statutory duties for a residential lease relationship that both the landlord and the tenant must follow. Your written Lease Agreement with your Landlord should spell out most of the duties and will be your “instruction manual” on how you can get relief. Some terms that may not appear in your Lease Agreement are nevertheless enforceable as they appear in the Revised Code. For instance, the Landlord has a duty under the Act to keep the premises in a fit and habitable condition, including making repairs in a timely fashion. Most leases specifically spell out this duty by the Landlord. If you have notified your Landlord (notice in writing is always recommended and certified mail is not a bad idea either) that you need repairs in the unit and the Landlord fails or refuses to respond or make repairs, it is possible for a tenant to terminate the Lease Agreement without any further liability for the rent on the remainder of the Lease term. It is not advisable to proceed on any course of action without referring to the Lease first or to follow a lawyer’s answer if that lawyer has not reviewed your lease agreement…including this lawyer. Our advice would be to read your Lease carefully and, if you are still not sure how best to proceed, to contact a lawyer and ask him or her to review your Lease Agreement.