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The Foreward to Shopping Center DealMaker’s Handbook® was written by William Reavey, a prominent California real estate attorney. In it he discusses the need for comprehensive, easy-to-use, preliminary agreements. Using quality preliminary agreement forms increases the likelihood that all important deal points are addressed up front and accelerates the deal-making process. As we all know, use of poor quality, vague and some sometimes self-contradictory term sheets often result in attorneys being called upon the flesh out what is missing. In essence, one of the benefits of a LOI that addresses all key deal points is the parties can move forward without incurring expensive legal fees prematurely. Lawyers, in particular, should find this Foreword interesting.  


There are three reasons to buy and use Shopping Center DealMaker’s Handbook®. First, it satisfies a need for preliminary deal making forms. Second, its digital forms make it readily useable. Third, it was written by an expert who knows how shopping center deals are put together.


This book satisfies a crucial need in the real estate development industry—the need for comprehensive, easy-to-use, preliminary agreements to facilitate the deal-making process. Experienced real estate professionals know that a lot can happen between the time of the parties’ initial agreement on a transaction in principle and the final, formal documentation of their understanding by attorneys. The source of the problem is that the initial understandings are generally oral with little or no supporting documentation.


Unfortunately, good documentation for the preliminary stages of a negotiation is hard to find. Often, preliminary agreements or understandings are put together by individuals with incomplete understanding of the multiple implications of their agreements. This lack of knowledge can result in vague and sometimes inherently self-contradictory term sheets. Of course, sorting out these inconsistencies and smoothing over various misunderstandings are tasks lawyers are trained to do. Lawyers glory in their ability to turn simple deals into complex volumes of paper.


However, times are changing, and so is the practice of law. Emphasis is being placed on preparing complete and comprehensive preliminary documents, not just out of consideration for trees, but also to reduce legal fees and to quicken the pace of transactions. In fact, as preliminary documents become more lucid and coherent, the parties may no longer feel the need to generate the lengthy agreements that have long been the hallmark of American legal practice. Shopping Center DealMaker’s Handbook® is at the cutting edge of a trend toward efficiency in the management of deal making. This sourcebook provides a series of agreements that will enable the real estate professional to document deals so the parties can move forward and make commitments without incurring expensive legal fees prematurely.


Of course, Shopping Center DealMaker’s Handbook® is no substitute for good legal advice and tax planning. The forms in this book are not intended to cover every conceivable situation or contingency. Individuals using this book should consult with attorneys and/or accountants before making substantial financial commitments. By using the forms in this book correctly, however, the practitioner will be able to present his advisors with a more thorough and completely thought out transaction, and thus reduce outside legal and accounting fees.


I’m a computer enthusiast and one of the features of Shopping Center DealMaker’s Handbook® that I especially like is the digital forms download. This is an original, valuable feature that will permit the ready use of all the forms contained in the book. I know from personal experience that form books are often not employed because their use requires extensive administrative or secretarial support to put the forms on a computer system. Now, with a copy of Shopping Center DealMaker’s Handbook®, a deal maker working alone on the road can use the forms to generate helpful, concise documents with a minimum of support.


Over the years I have worked with Bruce Zimmerman on a wide variety of transactions from retail development to corporate acquisitions. Bruce is an able draftsman and a skilled negotiator, extremely knowledgeable in all facets of the shopping center development industry. Users of Shopping Center DealMaker’s Handbook® are certain to benefit from Bruce’s diligence, his creativity, and his diverse experience.


San Diego, California


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