Archive for May 2011

Ferguson's Motel Sale Price Reduced!

Attention Blog Readers and Buyers!

The owner of the Ferguson's Motel in Downtown Las Vegas has asked me to reduce the asking price to $1.6 Million.

This 68 unit property is on Fremont Street just east of the Fremont Street Entertainment District.  Each unit is equiped with a kitchenette, thus making it also an Extended Stay property.

For updated information on the Ferguson's Motel click on button to the right or use my email address below.

And for Information about Las Vegas Commercial Investment Property, contact David Howes at:

Dual Agency-Single Broker of Record

In order to fully understand dual agency, it is important to understand that as far as representation is concerned, the law views the broker of record as the agent and the salespeople that hang their real estate license with that broker as licensees, not as agents. What this means is that a dual agency can exist even if two agents are involved in a transaction because they may share the same broker.

This is particularly important for companies that use a single broker of record for multiple sales offices. In such case, if a licensee from the Downtown office makes an offer on a listing held by another licensee in the Westside office, a dual agency must be disclosed to the parties. Again, this is because there is a single broker of record, agent, for both offices and both licensees are working under that broker/agent. Clearly the same is also true for a single licensee who is acting on behalf of, say, a buyer and seller.

It is important for brokers to understand all the laws surrounding dual agency and how these laws affect their duties of disclosure to their clientele.

Abitration Clauses

Arbitration is often offered as an alternate form of dispute resolution in commercial leases. By agreeing to use the services of an arbitrator, the parties agree to waive their rights to litigate disputes in civil court. There are a few matters, however, such as eviction, fraud and criminal activity where use of the public court system is mandatory.

Before agreeing to arbitration, there are a few things to consider. First, the process for preparing to appear in arbitration can be identical to preparing for an appearance in civil court. That is to say attorneys can be retained, depositions can be taken and evidence can be requested and exchanged. Therefore, the preparation costs can be the same as for a traditional court case. Also, the final decision of the arbitrator is binding and cannot be appealed, regardless of the legal standing for the decision. In other words, the arbitrator’s decision can be totally arbitrary and without legal precedent or standing. In addition, the cost/fees for the arbitrator can be higher than court fees and costs depending on the length of the arbitration. Finally, there is no assurance that an arbitrator’s decision will be any better or worse than that of a judge. That being said certain ADR companies such as JAMS employ retired judges almost exclusively. This is not to say that binding arbitration is without merit, it is potentially faster than the civil courts and some argue have more predictable outcomes than a jury trial. Also, if privacy is an issue, ADR can be much more discreet than the civil court system. In addition, in the event that there are technical elements to a case, many attorneys prefer to argue in front of an arbitrator with some level of technical expertise as opposed to a jury of laypeople.

A few precautions can be taken prior to agreeing to an arbitration clause. First, make vetting the arbitrator a part of the agreement. Selecting an arbitrator with an extensive real estate background would be wise. Also, the parties may want to consider setting financial limits. For example, the parties could exclude any disputed amounts that qualify for small claims court and/or placing a cap on the amount subject to the arbitration.

Las Vegas Commercial Real Estate - Good, Bad, Ugly

Since visiting Napa, CA last week, I got a good look at what another smaller market is doing in comparison to my home turf of Las Vegas, NV.  Napa has been a desired destination for my wife and I since we honeymooned in San Francisco way back in 1985.

Well, I got a good look at it last week.  We purposely arrived on a Monday and departed on Thursday.  I really wanted to see downtown Napa in action during business hours.  And, it is quite quiet.  During our stay, my wife looked at architecture and I looked at real estate.  Okay, they are pretty much the same.  What I noticed was that you could compare both down towns. 

I found there are a lot of office and retail vacancies in and around downtown Napa just as there are in and around Downtown Las Vegas.  Napa has a few "newer" developments -- or should I say, re-developments.  And, it appears that money is being spent to improve the properties along (near) the river.  Developmental properties in and around Downtown Las Vegas are few, too.

Comparing their wineries to our Resorts on the Strip brings up the obvious: Foot traffic in downtown Napa is a good deal less than Downtown Las Vegas.  And, of course, there is definitely more foot traffic to our Strip resort corridor than Napa Valley's wineries.  This is because the wineries are spaced further apart from on another by hundreds of acres of grapevines.  You could walk between the wineries, but it is too far to do that when driving is a reasonable alternative.

The Las Vegas Valley population is much larger than Napa Valley.  You don't really need a census to figure that out.  But, the attraction to visit is just as appealing.  (Several times we would "run into" other visiting couples and many had been visiting Napa every year for years.  Sounds like Las Vegas to me.)

Unfortunately, being different animals, it did feel like I was comparing apples to oranges.  But, since tourism is what drives these economy's, it depends on the tourist's desire for a return trip.

As for hotels/motels, that would be comparing apples to oranges.  Las Vegas hotels are larger, because the "Strip" does draw more people.

For Information about Las Vegas Commercial Investment Property, contact David Howes at: