One Focus — Real Estate Law

Our firm focuses on real estate law, and as result, we have deep experience and insight in all aspects of real estate transactions.


"One lawyer to another, Richard Dickler is the best real estate lawyer I’ve encountered in NYC..." read more

How We Save You Money

On a refinance:

A client asked us whether he needed a lawyer to represent him in refinancing his condominium.

We told him he should look into getting a CEMA loan. “What’s a CEMA?” he asked. We explained that it’s an acronym for “Consolidation, Extension, and Modification Agreement.” With a CEMA, he could take advantage of a tax loophole and save on the mortgage tax (1.8% of the outstanding principal balance on mortgages under $500,000 and 1.925% if the loan is over $500,000). We told him that not all mortgage brokers, bankers, and bank attorneys actively pursue this way of avoiding the payment of mortgage tax, and that changing lending institutions would involve a lengthy and technical procedure. He hired us, and we saved him over $9,000.

On a purchase:

Our client was purchasing a co-op apartment.

As part of our services, we did our “due diligence” which included reviewing the co-op offering plan, reviewing the co-op’s recent financial statements, and reviewing minutes of the co-op Board’s meetings. The minutes revealed that the co-op board was planning an assessment that would cost the unit owner more than $10,000. In negotiating the contract, we were able to shift that cost to the seller.

Our clients were purchasing a newly-built condominium apartment.

We knew that mortgage lenders had become more cautious, so we warned our clients that even if they received a mortgage commitment, their bank could choose not to fund the mortgage if the appraisal turned out to be too low. In negotiating the contract, we advocated successfully for a very strong mortgage contingency clause. The appraisal did in fact come in below the agreed-upon purchase price. Because of the mortgage contingency clause, we were able to renegotiate the price, saving our client $20,000.