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Archive of Joshua M. Marks, Esq.

Joshua has written 22 articles for The BiggerPockets Blog.


Real Estate Investing Basics*

Learn the Basics of Short Sales (Video)

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. February 24, 2009

We put together the following video presentation in 3 parts to help you learn about the basics of Short Sales, how they work, etc. Other topics covered include Credit, Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure, dealing with the banks, and Taking a Short Sale Listing etc. PART II PART III

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Real Estate

Even At An Auction, You Need to Slow Things Down

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. June 25, 2008

An investor (who I will call “Phil”) recently contacted me with a situation that arises from his successful bid at an estate auction for a single-family home. Similar to most estate auctions, the auction participants had approximately one hour only to look through the property prior to the commencement of the auction. As you can […]

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Real Estate Law

Breaking Down the HUD-1 Settlement Statement

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. May 27, 2008

The Settlement Statement, often referred to as the “HUD-1”, is a document that contains a detailed breakdown of the closing costs apportioned between the buyer and seller of property. Typically, the closing agent (often a representative from the title company), gathers the pertinent information, completes the Settlement Statement and disperses the required funds once the […]

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Real Estate Investing Basics*

Title Insurance: The Basics

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. May 13, 2008

I have often found that many homebuyers lack a fundamental understanding about title insurance. While most past clients have admitted to briefly discussing the topic with their real estate agent, they don’t seem to understand its purpose or function–only that it will be an additional expense on the settlement sheet for which they are responsible. […]

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Commercial Real Estate and Notes*

Commercial Leases: Understanding the Keys to a Commercial Lease

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. March 4, 2008
Thumbnail image for Commercial Leases: Understanding the Keys to a Commercial Lease

If you are a starting a new business that requires you to either lease office space or open a physical store where you can visit with customers, chances are you will be signing a commercial lease. Before you engage in the process of selecting a viable location that meets your needs, it is a good […]

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Real Estate Law

Tips for Navigating the Short Sale Process

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. February 12, 2008
Thumbnail image for Tips for Navigating the Short Sale Process

With homeowners defaulting on their mortgages at a record pace, many people are practically begging their lenders for some form of relief or assistance in order to prevent themselves from ending up on the street. While it is certainly disconcerting to receive collection letters and threats of impending foreclosure from a lender, those who are […]

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Real Estate Investing Basics*

A Disgruntled Developer Tries to Get Back Commissions Already Paid to Agents

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. February 4, 2008

A Miami-Dade County, Florida developer, Related Group, has filed multiple lawsuits in the past month against real estate brokerages seeking the return of commissions on deals that fell through. The amount in controversy, which exceeds $460,000.00, is tied to commissions advanced by Related Group to the named-defendant brokerages on at least 19 sales contracts in […]

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Real Estate Investing Basics*

Real Estate Closing Costs and Good Faith Estimates

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. January 28, 2008

When I ask “Do you know what it will cost to buy your home?”, I’m not referring to the amount of your mortgage or interest rate. I’m talking about the [tag]closing costs[/tag], [tag]escrows[/tag] and pro-rated reimbursements that you will have to pay out of your pocket at the closing table. If you are working with […]

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Real Estate Law

5 Reasons Why You Need a Real Estate Attorney

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. January 21, 2008

True Story: Jim and Susan Jones were selling their home in Florida and relocating to Pennsylvania. They had entered into an agreement of sale with a buyer for their home simultaneous to signing an agreement of sale to buy a new home in Pennsylvania. After packing all of their belongings and getting ready to board […]

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Landlording and Rental Property Investing*

Issues To Consider When Buying/Selling Multi-Unit Residential Income Property

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. January 14, 2008

When purchasing a multi-unit [tag]residential property[/tag], there are additional items that must be addressed at settlement that are not routine in typical residential transactions. For this very reason, it is essential to ask your [tag]real estate agent[/tag] if he/she has significant experience in handling multi-unit properties (I would also strongly suggest that you involve a […]

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Landlording and Rental Property Investing*

Landlords: The Importance of Investigating Outstanding Violations

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. January 9, 2008

In many municipalities, a Certificate of Occupancy (often referred to as the “CO”) must be obtained by the seller and delivered to the buyer prior to or at closing. This insures that the buyer is aware of any outstanding violations or pending assessments against the property. However, some towns do not require a CO. If […]

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Real Estate Law

A Contractor’s Failure to Properly Register was a Crime Under New Jersey Law

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. December 17, 2007

In July 2006, Martin Korab hired Eric Rowland, a contractor, after seeing one of Mr. Korab’s advertisements under the name “Mercury Woods Carpentry” in the telephone book. Mr. Rowland gave Mr. Korab a written proposal along with a diagram detailing a bathroom renovation project, and accepted a deposit of $3,750.00 upon Mr. Korab signing the […]

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Investor Financing and Creative Real Estate Strategies*

Foreclosure Options Abound for Distressed Homeowners and Investors

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. December 10, 2007

For thousands of homeowners across the country saddled with adjustable-rate mortgages, 2008 promises to be a financially challenging year as interest rates begin re-setting thereby drastically increasing monthly mortgage payments. It is this problematic course of events in the residential market that has seen the number of foreclosures skyrocket over the past several months, with […]

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Landlording and Rental Property Investing*

The Perils of Going Condo

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. December 3, 2007

Purchasing a condominium is a popular choice for homebuyers of all ages who wish to dispense with the expensive and seemingly endless responsibility of maintaining a home. Although living in a condominium may allow for some to enjoy a more relaxed lifestyle, there are potential legal hassles involved in buying a condominium that can often […]

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Real Estate Investing Basics*

Landlord Security Deposit Laws: Use, Refund & Restrictions

by Joshua M. Marks, Esq. November 26, 2007

The volatile residential real estate market that is currently affecting thousands of homeowners across the country will undoubtedly force many people to postpone their dream of homeownership and settle for life as a tenant in a rental property. As more and more individuals and families enter into short and long-term leases, it is essential for […]

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