Cases

Real Estate – Commercial

Commercial Property with Multiple Complications & Deep Family Roots is Successfully Sold

Real Estate Practice

Situation

A multi-generational family-owned business experienced tremendous growth over the years. As the business grew, the family constructed a building off Route 128 that included additional space for other tenants. Years later, the owners sold the business, but kept the real estate.

After many years of self-managing the property, the family decided that it was time to sell the real estate. One complication the family was facing with the sale was that the property had an existing tenant with a long-term lease that had to be honored. After an initial deal to sell the real estate fell through, the commercial real estate broker involved with the sale introduced the property owners to Real Estate Attorney Peter Covo, at WCN. The broker was confident that Covo’s expertise and creativity would help the owners successfully complete the sale of the real estate.

A prospective buyer came forward who wanted to buy the building and associated real estate but only if they could also purchase a neighboring property and building that was owned by a third-party. For this to happen, the buyer needed to honor the existing lease in order to relocate the existing tenant to that neighboring building.

Action

Covo quickly identified the events to be sequenced and coordinated to enable this sale to be completed. The building was owned by a family trust, which requiring securing various documents and certificates to enable the sale to proceed. The transaction was further complicated due to actions not taken back when the family had sold the business. The leases had not been renegotiated with the family nor its other tenants to account for a potential future sale of the property. Covo led the renegotiation of the lease with the existing tenant.

Through a title search of the property, Covo discovered the Massachusetts Highway Department had future plans to add an exit ramp off Route 128 that would take a portion of the property through eminent domain. Covo contacted various authorities to learn more of the timing and details of the plan to share with the prospective buyer.

Covo guided and advised his clients throughout the sales process, updating them as each sequenced step was completed. The buyer was financing the purchase of the real estate which extended the timeline several times.   

For WCN’s client, a successful close of their property was contingent on the sale of the building next door. Covo closely monitored the status of that separate real estate transaction knowing there were risks outside of WCN’s and his clients’ control.  This sale weighed heavily on the clients as they wanted to complete the sale of the property to relieve the next generation of a potential burden. Covo knew the stakes of this case and made sure to take all precautionary measures. Frequent updates were supplied to the clients as the property next door successfully closed and he worked to renegotiate the tenant’s lease. Covo knew if one piece fell out of place, there was a high likelihood the deal could fall through.

Outcome

The generational property was successfully sold to the buyer. Covo renegotiated the tenant’s lease to move next door into the buyer’s other building. Real estate attorney Peter Covo helped preserve the generational heritage of this family who for decades had roots tied to this location while providing peace of mind and closure for his clients and the next generation.