Real Estate

The disruption caused by COVID-19 is transforming the commercial real estate industry, affecting how developers, businesses, individuals, and investors operate, finance, and utilize real estate. The way that offices, hotels, retail malls, restaurants, and office workspace is occupied is rapidly transforming to align with current conditions, forcing professionals in the commercial real estate industry to pivot and create solutions to address unprecedented market issues. Additionally, a surge in e-commerce is fueling demand for warehouse space to address supply chain issues, thus changing the way industrial space is acquired.

Legal counsel is a critical component of real estate transactions. Taft’s 90 real estate attorneys deliver timely, thoughtful counsel to navigate the complexities brought upon by the current conditions. We leverage our size, skills, and depth of industry knowledge to help our clients mitigate risk and avoid obstacles, and deliver results to our clients in a timely, cost-effective manner. While helping clients negotiate the right terms in an uncertain environment, attorneys are also assisting investors as they navigate the new tax complexities.

Our real estate attorneys deliver the full range of services related to the acquisition, leasing, management, use, and taxation of land and property. We bring a wide range of real-world practical experience coupled with an extensive network of real estate and financial industry contacts to create successful outcomes for our clients.

Our services include:

  • Acquisition and development of real estate for manufacturing, industrial, warehouse, commercial, retail, residential, hospitality, and other uses.
  • Tax counsel regarding the structure of ownership entities and transactions.
  • Financing of real estate assets, including mortgage loans, sale/leasebacks, participating mortgages, leasehold financing, as well as  construction and permanent financing for a wide variety of lenders and borrowers.
  • Leases for industrial, manufacturing, warehouse, commercial, retail, and office uses.
  • Public and private construction contracts, construction management agreements, design/build agreements, and architect and engineer contracts for owners, construction companies, and design professionals.
  • Sales, exchanges, and other dispositions of real estate assets.
  • Real estate tax disputes and appeals.
  • Implementing projects involving New Markets Tax Credits (NMTC), Historic Tax Credits, Tax Increment Financing (TIF), and Opportunity Zone Financing.
  • Litigation, arbitration, and mediation regarding purchase contracts, leases, mortgages, mechanics' liens, construction contracts, and other disputes and claims relating to real estate.
  • Annexation, eminent domain, and land use issues, including obtaining re-zonings, variances, and conditional use permits.
  • Legal services regarding Community Development Entities (CDEs).

Our clients represent a wide variety of developers, manufacturers, and industrial companies, banks, insurance companies, pension funds, institutional and private investors, and construction contractors. We also regularly collaborate with special servicers to maximize the timely recovery of principal and interest, or to assist with actions related to credit issues.

While much of the Real Estate team’s work involves properties for clients across Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, and Minnesota, we also assist clients in transactions throughout the United States.

Award Recognitions

Our group was awarded with the Midwest Real Estate News’ #1 Top Law Firm in 2019 and 2020, reflective of the total number of transactions completed in 2018 and 2019. In addition, the real estate group was named as a 2020 and 2021 “Leading Law Firm” by Chambers USA® for Real Estate: Zoning/Land Use Illinois, and Real Estate Law in Indiana, Illinois, Minnesota, and Ohio. The group is also ranked as National Tier 1 by U.S. News - Best Lawyers® 2021, and also earned Metropolitan Tier 1 rankings in Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Dayton, Indianapolis, and Minneapolis.

Related Practices

Related Industries


  • Ranked National Tier 1 by U.S. News – Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms” for Real Estate Law (2020-2021)

  • “Leading Law Firm” by Chambers USA® for Real Estate Law in Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, and Ohio (2021)

  • Ranked National Tier 1 by U.S. News – Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms” for Real Estate: Land Use & Zoning Law (2021)

  • Ranked #1 Top Law Firm by Midwest Real Estate News in its “Best of the Best” (2019 & 2020)

Notable Matters

  • Represented the purchaser in Chicago’s biggest suburban office deal of 2017.
  • Represented the purchaser in one of Chicago’s biggest suburban office deals of 2016.
  • Represented an industrial manufacturer in the acquisition, financing and disposition of numerous facilities.
  • Represented the purchaser in a multi-tenant industrial warehouse building in Illinois.
  • Obtained public way approvals for a flagship retailer and oversaw the construction of its innovative, state-of-the-art addition to an existing office building, which included zoning, utility and public right-of-way elements.
  • Obtained zoning approval and entitlements for a mixed-use student housing and retail project serving a higher education institution.

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