Do Your Homework Before Buying a Property and Expecting to Use it as a Short-Term Rental
By Jason P. Seaver
The short-term leasing of properties, particularly vacation properties, has been a hot topic of discussion for the last several years. Leasing out a vacation property when not in use by the property owners has been done for decades to help defray the cost of maintenance, or even as a regular income stream to the owners…
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Property Rights Threatened by Recent Legislative Changes
By Christopher R. Martella and Jason P. Seaver
Does your subdivision have residential only deed restrictions that prevent a waste dump, slaughterhouse, or other businesses from moving in? Is your only lake access through a subdivision wide agreement? Are you located on a private road and have a written agreement amongst the co-owners for how the road is going to be maintained and paid for? For commercial property owners, did you sell off an outlot knowing that you restricted the property so that a direct competitor, an adult entertainment establishment, or other unwanted activities couldn’t occur right in front of your building? Have those restrictions been around for 40 years or longer? If so, your rights may be terminated by a little-known provision of Michigan law called the Marketable Record Title Act if you do not take action…
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Navigating the Financial Terms of Net Leases, Gross Leases and the Hazy Terrain In Between
By C. Leslie Banas
A new business enterprise seeking to lease space is often faced with a dizzying array of considerations, both strategic and operational — Where to locate? How much square footage is needed? For how long a term?
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Your Property is Owned by an LLC: Is Liability Really Limited?
By Jason P. Seaver and Kate L. Ringler [Winter 2019]
The use of an LLC is a common estate planning technique for gifting, creditor protection, and management purposes. In Michigan, many people transfer their second home into an LLC for just these purposes. Absent a phone call to your insurance provider, that transfer could be costly if someone is injured or there is damage to the property…
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Plan today to manage your current and future property tax expenses
By Jeremy R. Cnudde    [Fall 2014]
Managing property tax expenses is a major focus for you as an owner or tenant of real property in Michigan. As the “Great Recession” in Michigan subsides and property values rebound, it is important to regularly review and monitor adjustments in your property assessments.”
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Reducing tax costs of foreclosure and deed in lieu transactions
By William B. Acker    [Fall 2012]
When business economic conditions change substantially, commercial property net rental income and cash flow may deteriorate and become insufficient to meet the expenses of owning, operating and maintaining the property. This often results in a true decline in the economic value of the property.
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Mine, yours and the IRS
By Gloria M. Chon    [Winter 2011]
If you and your spouse jointly own property in Michigan, there is a good chance that you own the property as “tenants by the entirety.”
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Property tax classification appeals
By Richard D. Bisio    [Summer 2011]
Property classification has become a hot issue since 2008, when the Michigan Business Tax and associated amendments gave a tax break to industrial personal property. Since then, assessors have been looking closely at property classification with a view to reclassifying industrial property to commercial, a move that increases personal property tax rates for the property owner.
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Michigan seeking to reclassify industrial properties
By Richard D. Bisio    [Winter 2010]
Several of our clients have received notice that the Michigan Department of Treasury is seeking to reclassify their property from industrial to commercial.
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Environmental spill can be financial disaster for your business
By Patricia Paruch    [Fall 2010]
The oil spills in the Gulf of Mexico and the Kalamazoo area demonstrate the catastrophic effects of accidental spills of hazardous and other regulated substances. Even the best-designed safety plans can go awry through human error and/or equipment failure. All businesses that handle, store, transport or use regulated substances in their operation should be aware that state and federal penalties for damage to the environment from a spill can threaten the businesses’ bottom line.
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Extension/expansion of home buyer tax credit, but act early in 2010!
By William B. Acker    [Spring 2010]
Federal law has just extended and increased the availability of a federal income tax credit for certain buyers of a principal residence. These important changes could make it easier for you or someone in your family to buy or sell a home. The changes offer new opportunities under recently expired rules.
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