Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Real Estate Brokerage Regulatory Updates - 12/14/16 NYS Board of Real Estate meeting summary

On 12/14/16 the NYS Board of Real Estate continued its mission of optimizing the regulation of real estate brokers in our state by holding its meeting. To remind real estate brokers and salespersons, the public is welcome at these meetings where the public can bring comments from the floor. It's encouraged that Lieb School students attend these meetings to have your voices heard. 

"[T]he Board has general authority to promulgate rules and regulations affecting real estate brokers and salespersons in order to administer and effectuate the purposes of Article 12-A of the Real Property Law."

A complete video of the meeting is available on youtube.

In summary, the following was discussed:
  1. The collaboration between the Department of State and the Division of Human Rights in investigating claims of discrimination and enforcing the law. To date, the Department of State has referred 5 complaints to the Division of Human Rights. 
  2. The Department of State's right, even without subpoena, to request documents from a licensee (including to document requests pertaining to documents that are unrelated to the practice of real estate brokerage) and that a licensee's failure to cooperate may result in a license suspension. 
  3. A new licensing requirement of a 1 hour course on licensee safety is being added to curriculum and to make room for such additional hour the property insurance requirement is being reduced from 2 hours to 1 hour.
  4. The comments period for regulatory changes, [to 175.1 (commingling money), 175.7 (disclosure to clients before accepting money), 176.3 (1 hour license safety course), 177.3 (minimum instruction time of 1 hour rather than 3 hours), 177.7 (computation of time being 50 minutes for an hour requirement) and 175.25 (licensee disclosure of license type on business cards)], has expired and such regulations are expected to be effective in mid January 2017. 
  5. Brokerage firms can utilize cloud storage of their records so long as such cloud technology creates an accurate reproduction of paper records and has technology to permit discovery of any alterations of such records.
  6. The Board of Real Estate meeting schedule for 2017 is April 12, 2017, September 13, 2017 and December 6, 2017. 
The next meeting is expected on April 12, 2017. 



Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Real Estate Transactions and Notary Public Exposure

In a real estate practice the act of notarizing documents is a matter of course for attorneys, paralegals and title closers alike. Often the stamps come out without even a first concern or a break for analysis because a real estate transaction is far too often undertaken while the professionals are on autopilot. Typically, a title closer will stamp documents, collect them and file them at the County Clerk’s Office with minimal oversight and scant quality control measures being in place to avoid forgery or the like. The courts remind us, from time-to-time, that this is a bad idea.

Read the full article by Andrew Lieb, Esq. published in The Suffolk Lawyer here. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Lieb at Law seeks Associate Attorney for Complex Litigation

Lieb at Law, P.C. is seeking an Associate Attorney who can hit the ground running in a technologically advanced and collaborative environment. Ideal candidate is a top producer with impeccable research and writing skills. 

This role will start off working across all aspects of the firm’s litigation practice inclusive of real estate litigation, contractual litigation, premises liability, ownership disputes, plaintiff personal injury, estate litigation and more. You will draft legal memos, motions, pleading, discovery demands and responses. You will negotiate and prosecute personal injury claims against insurance adjusters. You will also help prepare for depositions, trials, mediations, arbitrations and expert consultations.  

Proven competency quickly leads to more challenging and rewarding litigation opportunities such as oral arguments, depositions, appeals, arbitrations, mediations and trials. Throughout every step you will be mentored. Those that succeed will be charged with developing their own personal niche as their career evolves.

The firm offers an environment that supports personal and professional growth without micromanagement or dogmatic resistance to fresh and innovative ideas.  Competence trumps experience and career growth is limited only by your own ability, ambition and desire to learn, evolve and earn career “wows”. 

This position is located in Center Moriches, which is in Suffolk County within the Riverhead / Westhampton Area. Clients span across Metro New York area.

Compensation: Commensurate with experience, includes full benefits package. 

To apply submit Cover Letter and Resume here. 

Monday, December 5, 2016

Ben Carson is nominated to be the next HUD Secretary

Media is reporting that Trump's HUD pick, Ben Carson, will undo Obama's fair housing legacy (e.g., Obama's rule on local communities assessing patterns of racial & income discrimination existing in housing, amongst others).


They cite to what Ben Carson wrote in the Washing Times:

These government-engineered attempts to legislate racial equality create consequences that often make matters worse. There are reasonable ways to use housing policy to enhance the opportunities available to lower-income citizens, but based on the history of failed socialist experiments in this country, entrusting the government to get it right can prove downright dangerous.


Yet, remember fair housing is enforced on the local level of government and the federal government provides merely a floor of rights, not a ceiling. As stated in the Fair Housing Act, at 42 USC 3615:

Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed to invalidate or limit any law of a State or political subdivision of a State, or of any other jurisdiction in which this subchapter shall be effective, that grants, guarantees, or protects the same rights as are granted by this subchapter; but any law of a State, a political subdivision, or other such jurisdiction that purports to require or permit any action that would be a discriminatory housing practice under this subchapter shall to that extent be invalid.


So, states like New York, who provide additional protections to the federal government, will continue to protect society's most vulnerable irrespective of what the federal government does. As Governor Cuomo said in a speech on February 14, 2016:
This state is about acceptance of all by all; discrimination of none by none. Those are the rules that we live by in this state,  ... if you are looking for the progressive future and you want to know how to deal with tough problems, like racial unrest and cultural diversity, you look to the great state of new york. 

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Top Reasons to Be Thankful For East End Real Estate Brokers

The best listing agents sell property based on substance. Before even marketing the property, these agents understand that they are brokering a specific property that requires a tailored approach. 

From Due Diligence, Negotiations and Fair Housing, top Real Estate Agents continue to impress us. Learn what they do to lead the industry. 

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Condominium Foreclosure for Unpaid Common Charges

In Plotch v. Citibank, decided on May 10, 2016, the Court of Appeals clarified issues of lien priority between a consolidated mortgage and a condominium’s common charge lien pursuant to RPL §399-z. Specifically, the court addressed whether the exception to a common charge lien’s priority for “all sums unpaid on a first mortgage of record,” as set forth in RPL §399-z, applies to a consolidated mortgage recorded prior to the recordation of such common charge lien. The court held that a consolidated mortgage constitutes only one first mortgage of record for purposes of lien priority under the Condominium Act. However, the court limited its holding by emphasizing that the consolidated mortgage was recorded prior to the common charge lien, and therefore the court expounded that “[t]he consolidation agreement […] did not interfere with any rights of the condominium board.” In such, it is envisioned that a subsequently recorded consolidation agreement to a common charge lien will not be given first lien priority pursuant to RPL §399-z.

Read the full article, published in The Suffolk Lawyer by Andrew Lieb, Esq. Here. 

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The End of Airbnb in NYC

On October 21, 2016 Governor Cuomo signed a bill into law that amends the New York State Multiple Dwelling Law (“NYSMDL”) and the New York City Administrative Code to prohibit the advertising of certain New York City residential rentals with lease terms of less than 30 days. Although many short-term rentals in New York City are already illegal in order to prevent dwelling units from being used as transient hotels in violation of fire and building codes and other regulations, this law makes it clear that the advertising of such rentals is also prohibited. Now that this bill has become law, those who list rentals on Airbnb and other short-term rental websites may face a fine of up to $1,000 for the first violation, $5,000 for the second violation, and $7,500 for the third violation and any subsequent violations.

In 2010, the NYSMDL was amended to ban short-term rentals with terms of less than 30 days for class A multiple dwellings, which are dwellings used as permanent residences where each dwelling is occupied by three or more independent families. A dwelling is considered a permanent residence if it is occupied by the same natural person(s) for a period of 30 consecutive days or more.

Three exceptions exist to the 30-day restriction for class A multiple dwellings rentals. First, occupants who cohabitate with boarders or lodgers are exempt because they are sharing the space in a license scenario rather than granting exclusive occupancy in a lease, which is a prerequisite  to the applicability of the prohibition on short-term rentals. Next, where the occupants live in the class A dwelling for less than 30 days, but do not pay the permanent occupants for their stay, the restriction is also inapplicable. This situation occurs frequently when friends or family members stay at the residence when the owner is not home. Finally, class A multiple dwellings explicitly do not include hotels, rooming houses, boarding houses, club houses, and school dormitories.

There are also exemptions for some Class A dwelling units that are grandfathered from the prior law. This grandfathering occurred where a Class A dwelling was constructed before a specific date and was historically and continuously used for purposes other than as permanent residences. These units were allowed to convert to Class B (which is a class that includes, but is not limited to, hotels, rooming houses, boarding houses, club houses, and college dormitories) within 2 years after the effective date of the 2010 law if the owners could obtain a Class B certificate of occupancy and complied with all of the conditions and requirements within this 2-year conversion period. However, since these conditions and requirements were quite stringent, many such dwellings did not qualify for this conversion. Furthermore, those that did not convert to Class B by 2012 have missed their opportunity.  

Despite the 2010 law, short-term rental websites such as Airbnb have proliferated, each allowing individuals to list their apartments on these websites for short periods which inherently violate the NYSMDL. Under this new law, New York legislators have stopped the proliferation of these advertisements in their tracks.

The NYSMDL only applies to cities with populations of 325,000 or more. Realistically, this means that NYSMDL only applies to New York City, since it is the only city in the state with  a population of 325,000 or more. This new law essentially marks the end of short-term listings on Airbnb in New York City. In the war against short-term rentals that operate as illegal hotels, New York legislators has won its latest battle.


Monday, October 10, 2016

Litigation Associate | Career Opportunity | Lieb at Law, P.C. is Hiring

*NYC Attorneys that want to relocate to suffolk county / hamptons*


We are looking to hire an attorney who is a sharp and dynamic leader to join our litigation practice group. We are a collaborative firm that leverages cutting edge technology and tangible fact-driven support to win cases. The ideal attorney has a fresh approach, thinks outside-the-box and does not cut corners. Our firm motto is 'no case; no statute; no talk'. This means that fluff will not get anyone very far at Lieb at Law. Specific practice field experience is not as relevant to us as finding the best match for our team (i.e., ambition and competence surpasses years in the industry).

Depending on the level of expertise, the role will either support or lead cases inclusive of real estate litigation, real estate brokerage litigation, title disputes, contractual litigation, premises liability, ownership disputes, personal injury, fair housing / discrimination, estate litigation and more. Seasoned attorneys will engage in oral arguments, depositions, arbitrations, mediations, trials, and appeals.

Our clients span across the New York Metro area and the Hamptons inclusive of major corporate accounts, high net worth individuals, small businesses, and more.

The firm offers an environment that supports personal and professional growth without micromanagement or dogmatic resistance to fresh and innovative ideas. Driven attorneys who prove their competency are quickly rewarded with increased responsibilities and opportunities beyond that offered for similarly experienced attorneys at larger firms. Competence trumps experience and career growth is limited only by an attorney’s own ability, ambition and desire to learn, evolve and earn career "wows".  Partner Track is preferred.

Compensation is commensurate with competency. (benefits included)


Cover Letter and Resumes to careers@liebatlaw.com or  http://tinyurl.com/liebatlawjob

--------------------------------------------

About Lieb at Law, P.C.

Lieb at Law, P.C. services the New York Metro area inclusive of the Hamptons and NYC with a practice focus on real estate and corporate litigation and compliance. Lieb attorneys train and write articles on the latest case law, statutes and industry practices affecting real estate professionals. The firm also offers legal services in related fields like real estate brokerage, fair housing / discrimination, mortgage foreclosure, business / entrepreneurship, ownership disputes and more. Lieb at Law also provides a full range of legal services for landlords such as: Ownership Entity Structuring; Lease Drafting & Negotiation; Fair Housing and Discrimination Training & Litigation Defense; Pet Policies & House Rules; Evictions; Property Damage Litigation & Security Deposit Disputes; Rental Permits & Municipal Compliance; Land Use and Development; and Property Management Training & Operations Structuring.

Lieb at Law's mission is to serve as an indispensable strategic advisor to our clients, helping to minimize risk while maximizing profitability, and aggressively litigate with leading solutions. The firms transactional team ensures that contractual language is driven by qualitative data from the litigation field. Lieb at Laws work product is a derivative of embracing education and technology. Lieb at Law is fully committed to our technology-based collaborative approach and believes that this operational model drives our success.

Beyond utilizing legal research platforms to enable immediate access to the most recent case law and publications, the firm's systems include cloud-based file and time management software with additional proprietary programs. As a result, Lieb Attorneys have instantaneous access to client records anywhere, even on their smartphones in court and at closings.

This profile is attorney advertising. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Andrew Lieb Esq. and Dennis Valet, Esq. have been named NY Metro Rising Stars 2016 from Super Lawyers

Lieb at Law, P.C.  is thrilled to announce that Andrew Lieb, Esq. and Dennis Valet Esq. have been named NY Metro Rising Stars 2016 from Super Lawyers.

They are featured in The Annual List of Top Attorneys from Super Lawyers. 


Summer’s Over: How to Prepare Your Home for Next Year

With the summer season over, East End landlords are in the process of retaking possession of their homes. Beyond perhaps a few beach trips, it’s the time of year when landlords need to assess the extent that their tenants damaged their summer homes and to hire contractors to make the requisite repairs and improvements to those properties in order for them to be ready for next year’s crop of tenants. However, the damage is not the end of the headache.
Instead, incident to getting those repairs done many landlords will end up fighting with contractors over fees, which can be an all-consuming experience because of the ever-present threat of a mechanics’ lien. Pursuant to the New York State Lien Law, a mechanics’ lien is a type of security instrument in real estate available to a “[a] contractor, subcontractor, laborer, materialman, landscape gardener, nurseryman … who performs labor or furnishes materials for the improvement of real property with the consent or at the request of the owner,” which must be filed within 4 months (8 months in commercial) of the last date such labor or materials were provided at a residential project. 
Andrew Lieb, Esq. shares the top 5 facts about mechanics’ liens that every homeowner should understand on Dan's Papers. Click here to read the full article. 

Monday, October 3, 2016

Continuing Education Requirements for New York Licensed Real Estate Brokers and Salespersons

New York Real Estate Salespersons and Brokers are regulated by the Department of State, New York (DOS) and are required to complete 22.5 Continuing Education credits within a 2 year license renewal period.  License renewal dates can be found on the New York State Real Estate License (look for license expiration date). 

As of 01/01/2017, Licensed NY Real Estate Salespersons and Brokers must take the following Continuing Education courses in their renewal cycle:

  • 3 Hours of instruction pertaining to Fair Housing and/or Discrimination in the sale or rental of real property or an interest of real property
  • 2 Hours of Agency Disclosure for the initial two-year licensing term and at least 1 hour of Agency Disclosure in subsequent renewal cycles. 
If you are grandfathered in, the new continuing education requirements do not apply.  

  • Draw your attention to this paragraph "The provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to any licensed real estate broker who is engaged full time in the real estate business  and who has been licensed under this article prior to July first, two thousand eight for at least fifteen consecutive years immediately preceding such renewal."

In addition to the New York State Continuing Education requirements, member's of the National Association of REALTORS® are required to complete ethics training of not less than 2 hours, 30 minutes of instructional time within four-year cycles. The training must meet specific learning objectives and criteria established by the National Association of REALTORS®. The current cycle will end Dec. 31, 2016. 

Lieb School offers a license renewal package that satisfies ALL of the requirements above. 

Or you can purchase individual courses here:





Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Defaults in Foreclosure are a Thing of the Past

Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law an amendment to CPLR Rule 3408, which, at new subsection (m) thereof, effectively eliminates defaults in foreclosure actions as currently understood. Interestingly, the amendment is made to CPLR Rule 3408, which is the CPLR Rule titled “Mandatory settlement conference in residential foreclosure actions,” and not to CPLR Rule 320, which is the CPLR Rule titled “ Defendant’s appearance,” or to CPLR Rule 5015, which is the CPLR Rule titled “Relief from judgment or order,” or to CPLR §3012(d), which is the CPLR subsection titled “Extension of time to appear or plead.” This choice of placement raises questions about how the amendment will be effective in practice. Further questions are raised because the amendment includes superfluous language in expressly stating that the “default shall be deemed vacated” while also referencing the “reasonable excuse” language from both CPLR Rule 5015 and CPLR §3012(d). Still further, the new subsection does not eliminate the need for a defendant to formally answer, but only extends the time to answer, which presumptively will remain a problem for a foreclosure defendant to accomplish at a later date. These question marks need to be ironed out by practitioners and the courts after new subsection (m)’s effective date of December 20, 2016.

Read the full article published in The Suffolk Lawyer by Andrew Lieb, Esq. and Jay Sheryll, Esq. here. 

Monday, September 26, 2016

Career Opportunity | Attorney | Litigation | Lieb at Law, P.C.

Lieb at Law, P.C., is seeking a Litigation Attorney.


We are looking to hire an associate attorney who is a sharp and dynamic leader (and/or potential leader) to join our litigation practice group in Center Moriches. We are a collaborative firm that leverages cutting edge technology and tangible fact-driven support to win cases. The ideal attorney has a fresh approach, thinks outside-the-box and does not cut corners. Our firm motto is 'no case; no statute; no talk'. This means that fluff will not get anyone very far at Lieb at Law. Specific practice field experience is not as relevant to us as finding the best cultural match (i.e., ambition and competence surpasses years in the industry). 

Depending on the level of expertise, the role will either support or lead cases inclusive of real estate litigation, real estate brokerage litigation, title disputes, contractual litigation, premises liability, ownership disputes, estate litigation and more. For more junior litigators, the role will start off drafting legal memorandums, pleadings, discovery demands and responses, motions, settlement negotiations, and more. Seasoned attorneys will engage in oral arguments, depositions, arbitrations, mediations, trials, and appeals. 

Our clients span across the New York Metro area and the Hamptons inclusive of major corporate accounts, high net worth individuals, small businesses, and more. 

The firm offers an environment that supports personal and professional growth without micromanagement or dogmatic resistance to fresh and innovative ideas. Driven attorneys who prove their competency are quickly rewarded with increased responsibilities and opportunities beyond that offered for similarly experienced attorneys at larger firms. Competence trumps experience and career growth is limited only by an attorney’s own ability, ambition and desire to learn, evolve and earn career "wows". 


Compensation is commensurate with competency. 

**TO APPLY** Email Cover Letter & Resume to careers@liebatlaw.com 

Friday, September 23, 2016

Lieb School Launches 22.5 CE License Renewal Course Package | Online Video Classes | $99.00

NY Real Estate Continuing Education 22.5 Credit 

License Renewal Course Package 

(click for online classes preview - turn sound on)
Anywhere and anytime you can finish all 22.5 hours of real estate continuing education as long as you have internet access. Lieb School’s online license renewal package includes video, audio and interactivity to get the job done without making you want to gouge your eyeballs out. Satisfies Department of State, New York Real Estate Continuing Education Requirements for License Renewal.

Courses include:

  • Deal Killers (3 CE Credits)
  • Conflicts of Interest (3 CE Credits)
  • Agency Disclosure (8 CE Credits)
  • Divorce Deals (4.5 CE Credits)
  • Fair Housing Act (4 CE Credits)
The first course in this package is Deal Killers, where you will learn how to comprehensively negotiate a deal with substance and understand how to lock in your commission through creating a paper trail proving that you addressed substantially all of the essential terms of the transaction while negotiating the deal. Next, Conflicts of Interest will teach you the role of each player in a transaction and how to avoid an ethical claim that can otherwise ruin your career. Following, you will learn the whole enchilada about agency disclosure including an easy to follow 12 scenario explanation of which form to give and when. After you have mastered how to fill out the agency disclosure forms, Divorce Deals will show you how to navigate through all of the complexities of selling a marital residence and share with you interesting insights of what your clients are going through during their divorce process. Last but certainly not least, after completing the Fair Housing Act course, you will learn the nationwide standard for anti-discrimination laws in residential housing and how to perform your job while avoiding lawsuits, which New York State is actively pursuing against real estate brokers today.

After trying Lieb School’s ONLINE classes, you will never want online education from any other provider. Lieb School’s leading distance education combines the latest interactive technology, license law education and continuing edutainment.

Each course includes a video from a live classroom setting that was instructed by premiere lecturer Andrew Lieb, Esq. Content is thereafter broken down in order to simplify the learning experience so that students can absorb our field’s complex materials without being overwhelmed.

*Prices Subject to change
** Must complete the courses 6 months from the date you registered


CLICK HERE TO REGISTER






Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Real Estate Brokerage Regulatory Updates - 9/20/16 NYS Board of Real Estate meeting summary


On 9/20/16 the NYS Board of Real Estate continued its mission of optimizing the regulation of real estate brokers in our state by holding its meeting in NYC and Albany. To remind real estate brokers and salespersons, the public is welcome at these meetings where the public can bring comments from the floor. It's encouraged that Lieb School students attend these meetings to have your voices heard. 

"[T]he Board has general authority to promulgate rules and regulations affecting real estate brokers and salespersons in order to administer and effectuate the purposes of Article 12-A of the Real Property Law."

A complete video of the meeting is available on youtube.

In summary, the following was discussed:
  1. The partnership between the Department of State and the Division of Human Rights to enforce fair housing laws; 
  2. The new agency disclosure continuing education requirements as signed by the Governor into law earlier this month; 
  3. Diversity being an approved topic for continuing education;
  4. Notice of regulatory changes for the following topics will appear on the state register for 45 day comment period on 9/28/16: 19 NYCRR 175.1 (escrow and how much time can be held before deposited), 19 NYCRR 175.7 (consent of parties), 19 NYCRR 176.3 (license safety course and reduction in hours to property insurance course), 19 NYCRR 177.3 (allows training modules to be 1 hour rather than 3), 19 NYCRR 177.7 (allows the computating the computation from 60 to 50 minutes), and 19 NYCRR 175.25 (advertisements of business cards that license type be listed as a clarification); and
  5. Changing point allocation for acting as listing agent and selling agent.
Of note, no quorum existed so no votes were taken. The next meeting is expected in January 2017. 


Real Estate Brokerage - Major Change to Continuing Education Requirements - Agency Disclosure REQUIRED

On September 9, 2016 Governor Cuomo signed into law a major change to the continuing education requirements for real estate brokers, associate real estate brokers and real estate salespersons.

The new requirement reads as follows:
"[A]t least one hour of instruction pertaining to the law of agency except in the case of the initial two-year licensing term for real estate salespersons, two hours of agency related instruction must be completed"

This act takes effect on January 1, 2017.

The stated purpose of the Bill is:
"The bill amends the real property law to require two hours of agency related coursework in the licensee's initial two-year licensing term as part of the 22 1/2 hours of continuing education required for renewal of a real estate license in New York. In subsequent license terms one hour of agency related coursework will be required."

The justification for the Bill is:
"Understanding the agency relationship created between buyers/sellers, landlords/tenants and the real estate professional representing them during the real estate transaction is essential.

There are many real estate professionals and consumers who are often confused by the agency relationships created during the real estate transaction. At various points in time there may be several different agency relationships created, terminated or changed from first encounter to the closing table. Understanding what fiduciary duties are owed, the proper use of the agency disclosure form, and the ability to successfully represent clients in various forms of agency relationships such as buyer/tenant agency, seller/landlord agency and dual agency are critical for consumer protection."

Fulfill the requirement at Lieb School with our Agency Disclosure ONLINE course TODAY

Monday, September 19, 2016

RECAP: Eye On Real Estate with Andrew Lieb as Guest 9/17/16

Andrew Matthew Lieb was a guest on Eye on Real Estate this past weekend. Topics include: Pet Policies & Discrimination, Fair Housing, Airbnb, updates to the NY housing market, fiduciary duties of real estate agents, how to find who owns a property in NY and more...

To listen to the podcast, click here

Thursday, September 8, 2016

New Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac Refinance Program for 2017

On August 25, 2016, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced a new refinance program by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac that will be implemented in October 2017 for borrowers who are underwater on their mortgages.

This new program will replace the current Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP), which was set to expire on December 31, 2016. To avoid a gap of almost one year between the commencement of the new program and the expiration of HARP, the FHFA, which oversees both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, has also extended HARP through September 30, 2017.

HARP was launched in 2009 to assist homeowners who have high loan-to-value ratios to obtain refinanced loans with better rates. For clarity, HARP is different than the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), which is more generally familiar to our readership. HAMP was designed to assist homeowners in obtaining mortgage modifications on their existing loans whereas HARP is for homeowners seeking to refinance their loans into an entirely new mortgage product. Moreover, HAMP is for loans that are already in default or at risk of default whereas HARP is only for homeowners who are current on their loans.

A borrower is eligible for HARP through September 30, 2017 if:
  1.  There are no missed mortgage payments within the last six months;
  2. There is not more than one missed mortgage payment within the last twelve months;
  3. The house is a primary residence, 1-unit second home, or a 1- to 4- unit investment property;
  4. It is a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac-owned loan;
  5. The loan was made on or before May 31, 2009; and
  6. The loan-to-value is greater than 80%.
The new refinance program launching in October 2017 will be more “targeted” than HARP, but details are not yet fully available. The following are the currently known eligibility requirements:
  1. There are no missed mortgage payments within the last six months;
  2. There is not more than one missed mortgage payment within the last twelve months;
  3. The borrower must have a source of income;
  4.  It is a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac-owned loan; and
  5. The borrower must receive a benefit, such as reduced monthly mortgage payments.
Of greatest import, unlike the expiring HARP, the new program will extend eligibility to loans made after May 2009 and borrowers will be able to refinance under the new program more than one time. Though more than 3.4 million homeowners have already refinanced under HARP, there are still hundreds of thousands of eligible homeowners who are still in need of assistance. This new program will continue to assist homeowners who are suffering from the housing crisis and open up opportunities to refinance for new categories of homeowners.

Unfortunately, no new announcements have been made to extend HAMP through 2017 even though there remains many properties currently in foreclosure and many millions more properties at risk for default. HAMP is set to expire on December 31, 2016. 

Monday, August 29, 2016

Top Five Questions Most Asked Of A Real Estate Lawyer In The Hamptons

For parties on both sides of the deal, the undertaking of buying and selling property can be…involved, to say the least. An Attorney can help you negotiate the morass of legal requirements and provide insight into the process. Though each property-buying experience is different, there are several questions that real estate lawyers are asked time and again.

Andrew Lieb, Esq. shares the top five more common queries on the Huffington Post. Click here to read the full article. 


Monday, August 22, 2016

Lieb School Free CE | Deceptive & Misleading Advertising | 3 Credits | Southampton

Date: 9/22/16 at 3:30pm
Location: 230 Elm, Southampton
Instructor: Andrew Lieb, Esq.
Credits: 3 CE Credits
Deceptive & Misleading Advertising

This 3 hour real estate brokerage continuing education course maps out the rules to advertise property in the State of New York. Did you know that real estate salespersons, associate brokers and brokers cannot just say whatever they want in real estate advertisements? Moreover, agents can’t be forced by their clients to manipulate the true description of property while marketing. In this course, you will learn that there is no freedom of speech in this regulated industry. In fact, the New York State legislature empowered the Department of State to enforce advertising regulations and such regulations are actually enforced.

After taking this course, you will be able to recite, with precision, the do’s and don’ts of real estate advertising. Instead of passing this integral function off to your team members or 3rd party vendors, you will know the importance of actively managing every aspect of promotion and mastering this craft. You will learn what you can and cannot include in advertisements. We will go over team advertisements, classified advertisements, mail, telephone, websites, e-mail, business cards, signs, billboards, flyers, for-sale signs, photographs, web-based promotion and more.

We will review court cases of deceptive and misleading advertising and you will understand the consequences of such action. We will discuss advertising statutes, regulations and opinion letters from the Department of State so that agents can advertise right up to the limit of what is permissible while complying with the laws of the State of New York.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Real Estate Law: Developing the East End

Everywhere that you turn in the Hamptons and on the North Fork there are newly constructed homes. Not only is the East End’s landscape filled with residential development, but, throughout the two forks, building spec homes has become a dominant industry. Spec developers first purchase a plot of land and then improve the land with a fabulous construction that they speculate will increase the property’s valuation far more than the composite cost of the land and the construction, individually.

However, such residential construction is speculative because the house is only marketed for sale once it has either been built or is close to a finished product. As a result, spec developers are selling finished products without any guaranteed purchaser, in contrast to offering their construction services to a consumer for a fee, as is done in a custom home job. In recent years, it appears that spec developers have been very successful, as more and more speculative construction is popping up throughout our East End neighborhoods. 

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Real Estate Law: Mold Remediation

Even the most magnificent homes face a challenge that can have an impact on property value, the beauty of your living space and your very health: Mold. The issue may not sound pretty, but there’s hope. Starting this year, Mold Remediation is a licensed field in New York State. 

Here are five facts that you should know in order to ensure that you are protected by the license law if you’re considering having your home remediated in 2016 or thereafter.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Top Five Real Estate Trusts Used by East Enders

The East End is a legacy community where families summer by the ocean, bay and wineries for continual generations. These families engage in strategic succession planning, whereby a trust, as an essential planning tool, is generally the best vessel to pass one’s Hamptons or North Fork real estate onto the next generation. A trust can address both federal and New York State estate tax issues, which can be crippling if ignored.

New York State taxes estates valued over $4,187,500 in 2016 at a rate that can reach up to 16%. In addition to New York State’s estate tax, the federal government taxes estates over $5,450,000 in 2016 at a rate that can reach up to 40%. So all individuals who don’t want their family’s summer home to fall victim to the tax collector must consider how best to pass their legacy onto the next generation.

Even with lower real estate valuations, trusts remain an essential succession-planning tool because they can prevent creditors from seizing certain properties and can control future generations from engaging in an undesired liquidation of the family’s home. 

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Changes to New York Foreclosure Law Impose Stringent Penalties for Failing to Negotiate in “Good Faith”

Recently Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law a comprehensive piece of legislation, which makes sweeping changes to New York’s requirement that Lenders and Borrowers negotiate in “good faith” during Mandatory Foreclosure Settlement Conferences.

Under New York foreclosure law, in a residential foreclosure action, commenced on or after February 13, 2010, involving a 1-4 family owner occupied property, it is required that a Mandatory Foreclosure Settlement Conference be held within sixty (60) days of service of the foreclosure summons and complaint. The purpose of the Mandatory Foreclosure Settlement Conference is to provide a venue for Borrowers and Lenders to settle the foreclosure action without further court action, via a loan modification, deed-in-lieu, short sale or other loss mitigation option. At this settlement conference, it is required that both parties negotiate in “good faith.”

However, the implementation of New York’s Mandatory Foreclosure Settlement Conference and its “good faith” negotiations requirement, has had its fair share of complications. To mitigate these complications, this recently enacted legislation, which takes effect on December 20, 2016, places stringent guidelines on the documentation and information that both parties must come to the conference with and requires that both parties, or representatives thereof, appear at the conference with full authority to settle the case.

Additionally, the legislation imposes more stringent penalties upon both parties should they fail to negotiate in “good faith.” Where it is found that a Lender has failed to negotiate in “good faith,” one or more of the following penalties may be imposed:
  • A toll of the accumulation and collection of interest, costs and fees during any undue delay caused; 
  • A civil penalty of up to twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000.00); 
  • Actual damages, fees (including attorney’s fees) and expenses incurred by the homeowner as a result of the Lender’s failure to negotiate in good faith; or 
  • Any other relief that the Court deems just and proper. 
On the other hand, where it is found that a Borrower has failed to negotiate in “good faith,” the Court is required to remove the case from the conference calendar, meaning that the Lender will then be permitted to move forward towards obtaining a Judgment of Foreclosure and Sale. 

Since the Federal Making Homes Affordable (“MHA”) program is due to expire on December 31, 2016, these additional consumer protections, provided by the State of New York, will ensure the availability of continued protections for the State’s distressed homeowners by requiring that Lenders come to the Mandatory Foreclosure Settlement Conferences ready, willing, and able to settle foreclosure actions, or face the consequences.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

New Real Estate License Law Regulation - Discrimination is Serious for your License

Effective May 18, 2016 the license law has been updated in the State of New York and discrimination clearly will no longer be tolerated by salespersons and brokers. The regulations is:

19 NYCRR 175.17(b)

No real estate broker or salesperson shall engage in an unlawful discriminatory practice, as proscribed by any federal, state or local law applicable to the activities of real estate licensees in New York State.

A finding by any federal, state or local agency or court of competent jurisdiction that a real estate broker or salesperson has engaged in unlawful discriminatory practice in the performance of licensed real estate activities shall be presumptive evidence of untrustworthiness and will subject such licensee to discipline, including a proceeding for revocation.

Nothing herein shall limit or restrict the Department from otherwise exercising its authority pursuant to section 441-c of the Real Property Law.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Dan's Taste of Summer - Exclusive Promo Code for 20% off Tickets

Exclusive PROMO code for 20% off tickets: LIEB

Dan's Taste of Summer kicks off with Dan's GrillHampton on Friday July 22,and continues on Saturday, July 23 with Dan's Taste of Two Forks presented by Farrell Building Company, both on the waterfront at Fairview Farm at Mecox, 19 Horsemill Lane, Bridgehampton. 

New to the lineup this year is the oceanfront food and drink fest ClambakeMTK at Gurney's Montauk, 290 Old Montauk Highway in Montauk on July 30 Dan's Harvest East End, the can't-miss food and wine classic, rounds out the series on August 20 at McCall Vineyard and Ranch, 22600 Main Road, Cutchogue.

For tickets and more information on all Dan's Taste of Summer events, visit DansTasteofSummer.com.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Top 5: Look No Further Than Lieb

Before making a real estate decision, read these five articles written by Andrew Lieb, Esq.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

What You Need To Know About Short Term Rentals In Southold

In September 2015, Southold passed a law, Southold Town Zoning Code §280-4, prohibiting all transient rental properties, also known as short-term rentals. Thereafter, local folklore emerged about grandfathering a house around the law. Don’t believe the folklore.

As a matter of background, prior to the transient rental law, Southold homeowners were generally able to rent their homes with no minimum durational restrictions. Now, all dwellings located in Southold, except for those on Fisher’s Island, are prohibited from leasing their homes for a period of less than 14 nights. Moreover, when a property is listed on a short-term rental website, the law presumes the dwelling is being used as a transient rental property. This law does not affect the hospitality industry as applied to licensed bed and breakfasts, hotels, and motels. Therefore, if you wish to stay in Southold for a duration of less than 14 nights, you must stay at a motel, hotel, or bed and breakfast.    

As to grandfathering a house around the law, for a non-conforming use to legally continue it must:
  • Not been enlarged, altered, extended, reconstructed or restored; and 
  • Never be changed to a conforming use. 
This last requirement is why Southold residents will functionally be unable to grandfather around the Southold transient rental law. Simply stated, once a homeowner’s property is used for a conforming use that nonconforming use no longer falls under the grandfathering exception. In a short-term rental, once the rental period is over, possession is transferred back to the homeowner in a conforming use. So, the only way to get grandfathering is to always have continuous occupancy at a home by tenants without ever having a break in rentals. This functionally doesn’t happen. Sometimes the best way to challenge a law that you don’t like isn’t to find a way around it, but instead to become active in local government and have the law changed to your liking.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Lieb at Law, P.C. Expands Litigation Team - Job Opportunities Available

**Click Here to Apply Now**

Multiple litigation positions available at Lieb at Law, P.C. including experienced attorneys and 2016 Law School graduates.


Litigation Team: 

Lieb at Law, P.C., is seeking the next Attorney to help raise the bar and lead our profession in a collaborative, inspiring and technologically advanced setting. This role will start off working across all aspects of the firm's litigation practice inclusive of plaintiff personal injury, real estate litigation, contractual litigation, premises liability, ownership disputes and more. Then, the candidate is charged with developing their personal niche as their career evolves.

We are looking for a potential star that is intellectually driven, who does not cut corners, has a fresh approach, thinks outside-the-box and can provide tangible fact-driven support. Our firm motto is "no case -no statute - no talk". This means that fluff will not get you very far at Lieb at Law, P.C.

The firm offers an environment that supports personal and professional growth without micromanagement or dogmatic resistance to fresh and innovative ideas. Driven attorneys who prove their competency are quickly rewarded with responsibility and opportunities beyond that offered for similarly experienced attorneys at larger firms. Competence trumps experience and career growth is limited only by your own ability, ambition and desire to learn and evolve. Career advancement includes partner-track.

This position is located in Center Moriches, which is in Suffolk County within the Riverhead / Westhampton Area. Clients span across Metro New York area.

Compensation: Commensurate with experience, includes full benefits package.

About the firm: 
Lieb at Law, P.C. services the New York Metro area inclusive of the Hamptons and NYC with a practice focus on real estate and corporate litigation and compliance. Lieb attorneys train and write articles on the latest case law, statutes and industry practices affecting real estate professionals. The firm also offers legal services in related fields like real estate brokerage, fair housing / discrimination, mortgage foreclosure, business / entrepreneurship, ownership disputes and more. Lieb at Law also provides a full range of legal services for landlords such as: Ownership Entity Structuring; Lease Drafting & Negotiation; Fair Housing and Discrimination Training & Litigation Defense; Pet Policies & House Rules; Evictions; Property Damage Litigation & Security Deposit Disputes; Rental Permits & Municipal Compliance; Land Use and Development; and Property Management Training & Operations Structuring.

Lieb at Law's mission is to serve as an indispensable strategic advisor to our clients, helping to minimize risk while maximizing profitability, and aggressively litigate with leading solutions. The firms transactional team ensures that contractual language is driven by qualitative data from the litigation field. Lieb at Laws work product is a derivative of embracing education and technology. Lieb at Law is fully committed to our technology-based collaborative approach and believes that this operational model drives our success.

Beyond utilizing legal research platforms to enable immediate access to the most recent case law and publications, the firm's systems include cloud-based file and time management software with additional proprietary programs. As a result, Lieb Attorneys have instantaneous access to client records anywhere, even on their smartphones in court and at closings.

For more information visit http://blog.liebatlaw.com and http://www.liebatlaw.com


This profile is attorney advertising. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome

Monday, June 20, 2016

Radio Interview with Andrew Lieb on Lieb School and Adverse Possession

Andrew Lieb discusses updates to Lieb School and Adverse Possession issues on 88.3FM Real Life with John Christopher.

Click here to Listen to Interview

Major Federal Foreclosure Prevention Program Will Come to an End in 2016

The Making Home Affordable (MHA) Program, which was launched in 2009 to assist millions of distressed homeowners facing foreclosure, is set to expire on December 31, 2016. Under this program, homeowners with non-GSE mortgages (i.e. mortgages not owned or guaranteed by FannieMae or Freddie Mac) may apply and be reviewed for refinancing, loan modifications, short sales, deeds-in-lieu, and unemployment assistance with their lenders in accordance with stringent guidelines set forth in the Making Home Affordable Handbook. Many homeowners who were approved for loan modifications under the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) were also eligible for free HUD-approved credit counseling to assist them in creating a household budget that lowers the risk of default in the future.

Previously set to expire on December 31, 2015, MHA was extended through 2016 due to its widespread success and the continuing need for relief for millions of homeowners nationwide. However, the number of applications under the MHA program have declined overall in recent years due to both the stabilizing housing market and drop in the unemployment rate. At the end of 2015, RealtyTrac reported that there were 1,083,572 properties with foreclosure filings nationwide—a significant drop from the peak of 2,871,891 properties with foreclosure filings in 2010. As of May 2016, RealtyTrac reported a total of 896,913 properties in default, at auction or repossessed by the banks.

The Obama administration has not yet announced another one-year extension to the program through 2017, and it is unclear at this time whether such an extension will be granted. The unknowns that are involved with the looming presidential election make the possibility of an extension even less clear. Though the foreclosure rate is down, there is still a great need for the MHA program for the many properties currently in foreclosure and the many millions more that are still at risk for default.

Homeowners who are still facing the possibility of foreclosure may apply for any of the foreclosure alternative programs under MHA on or before December 31, 2016 deadline.

Though it is not necessary to have a decision on the application for a loan modification, short sale, or deed-in-lieu by the end of 2016 to be eligible under the MHA program, servicers are required under the MHA program to design policies and procedures that ensure that permanent modifications are effective by December 1, 2017 and short sales and deeds-in-lieu are closed by December 1, 2017.

Struggling homeowners should apply now to take advantage of the foreclosure alternatives provided by the MHA program before the deadline of December 31, 2016. If homeowners do not apply by that date, they will be limited to applying for lender/servicer in-house programs, which are usually limited in scope and may not be as affordable or reasonable as the offers under the MHA program.

The candidates for the 2016 election should take a position on the possibility of extending the MHA program through 2017 in order to help the millions in foreclosure and in default. 

Thursday, June 16, 2016

How To Renew Your New York State Real Estate License (NYS Salesperson, Broker, Associate Broker)

The Department of State, New York (DOS) regulates NYS Real Estate Licenses. License Renewal must be completed online through the DOS eAccessNY Portal. 
(Trade Organizations / Clubs / Schools DO NOT regulate licensees)

Helpful Tips: Licensees are required to complete 22.5 continuing education credits within a 2 year license renewal period.

New York Real Estate Salespersons and Brokers are regulated by the Department of State, New York (DOS) and are required to complete 22.5 Continuing Education credits within a 2 year license renewal period.  License renewal dates can be found on the New York State Real Estate License (look for license expiration date). 

As of 01/01/2017, Licensed NY Real Estate Salespersons and Brokers must take the following Continuing Education courses in their renewal cycle:

  • 3 Hours of instruction pertaining to Fair Housing and/or Discrimination in the sale or rental of real property or an interest of real property
  • 2 Hours of Agency Disclosure for the initial two-year licensing term and at least 1 hour of Agency Disclosure in subsequent renewal cycles. 
If you are grandfathered in, the new continuing education requirements do not apply.  

  • Draw your attention to this paragraph "The provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to any licensed real estate broker who is engaged full time in the real estate business  and who has been licensed under this article prior to July first, two thousand eight for at least fifteen consecutive years immediately preceding such renewal."

When renewing your real estate license through the DOS portal, you will be asked if you have completed your continuing education requirements. If you mistakenly answer "No", the DOS will not renew your license. Instead, answering "No" will automatically prompt an audit. The audit will require you to provide the DOS with all of your original course completion certificates.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Brand New Lieb School CE | Deceptive & Misleading Advertising | 3 Credits



Deceptive & Misleading Advertising

Instructor: Andrew Lieb, Esq., MPH

Credits: 3 CE Hours
Date Offered: 7/14/16
Location Offered: Newsday Training in Melville

Summary: This 3 hour real estate brokerage continuing education course maps out the rules to advertise property in the State of New York. Did you know that real estate salespersons, associate brokers and brokers cannot just say whatever they want in real estate advertisements? Moreover, agents can’t be forced by their clients to manipulate the true description of property while marketing. In this course, you will learn that there is no freedom of speech in this regulated industry. In fact, the New York State legislature empowered the Department of State to enforce advertising regulations and such regulations are actually enforced.

After taking this course, you will be able to recite, with precision, the do’s and don’ts of real estate advertising. Instead of passing this integral function off to your team members or 3rd party vendors, you will know the importance of actively managing every aspect of promotion and mastering this craft. You will learn what you can and cannot include in advertisements. We will go over team advertisements, classified advertisements, mail, telephone, websites, e-mail, business cards, signs, billboards, flyers, for-sale signs, photographs, web-based promotion and more.

We will review court cases of deceptive and misleading advertising and you will understand the consequences of such action. We will discuss advertising statutes, regulations and opinion letters from the Department of State so that agents can advertise right up to the limit of what is permissible while complying with the laws of the State of New York.


Friday, June 3, 2016

Fair Housing Initiatives Launched on the Federal and State Levels

Andrew Lieb, Esq. takes a look at the most recent Fair Housing Initiatives.

Click here to read the full article published in The Suffolk Lawyer.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

STAR Credit Program Undergoes Two Critical Changes

The New York State School Tax Relief (STAR) program has changed. Rather than working with the local assessor, as was required in the past, homeowners will now need to register with New York State in order to apply for the program. Additionally, qualifying homeowners will receive a rebate check in the fall of every year rather than receiving a reduction directly on their school property tax bill.

There are two types of STAR benefits:
  • Basic STAR: At least one owner must use the property as a primary residence and the total combined household income of the owners and owners’ spouses who use the property as a primary residence must be $500,000 or less.
  • Enhanced STAR: At least one owner must use the property as a primary residence, all owners must be 65 years or older, and there must be a total combined household income of all owners (not just those who reside at the property) and any owner’s spouse who uses the property as a primary residence of $84,550. All owners do not need to be over the age of 65 if they are spouses, registered domestic partners or siblings so long as at least one owner is at least 65.
Starting this year, qualifying homeowners must register with New York State, which can be done online here or by phone at 518-457-2036, in order to apply for the STAR program. If the homeowners qualify, they will receive their STAR credit as a rebate check each September.

If homeowners are already receiving a STAR exemption and purchased their primary residence prior to May 1, 2014, they do not need to re-register to continue qualifying for the exemption, and they will continue to receive the exemption as a reduction on their school property tax bill. Only those who purchased their primary residence after August 1, 2015 or did not apply before the 2015 STAR application deadline are affected by these changes. 

Homeowners can check your local assessment roll to see if they are already receiving a STAR exemption. Understanding how the STAR credit program works and what changes have been implemented can help save time and money into the future.