Real Estate & Construction

Breaking News from the Rental Property Association of Wisconsin’s website and Blog:

Wisconsin Supreme Court rules on CCAP eviction records
04/16/2024 11:30 AM
The Wisconsin Supreme Court rejected Legal Action’s bid to make eviction judgments disappear in one year instead of the statutory 10-year retention period.
The industry and good renters owe a large thank you to Attorney Heiner Giese, Rick Van Der Leest of the Green Bay and Appleton Associations, and Chris Mokler of the Wisconsin Apartment Association
Continue Reading Wisconsin Supreme Court Rules on CCAP Eviction Records

As of February 13, 2024, the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) E1527–21 “Standard Practice for Environmental Site Assessments: Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Process” is now required when Phase I Environmental Site Assessments (ESAs) are conducted by environmental consultants to qualify for the innocent landowner defense, or the bona fide prospective purchaser or contiguous property owner liability protections, under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) (see: 42 U.S.C. 9601 et seq.).

The goal of
Continue Reading Use of the ASTM E1527-21 Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Standard Practice is Now Required to Meet CERCLA Liability Protections

Spring 2024 Landlord Boot Camp for Rental Property Association of Wisconsin (RPA)

  • When:   April 13, 2024
  • 8:30 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Location – SONESTA HOTEL WEST (10499 W. Innovation Drive, Wauwatosa WI 53226)


  • Non-Member (Early Bird) – $399.00  (Includes 1 Year General Membership to the Rental Property Assoc. of Wisconsin)
  • RPA Member (Early Bird) – $249.00
  • RPA Member Refresher (Early Bird) – $199.00Available to members who attended an RPA Landlord Boot Camp within the past 2 years

Continue Reading Spring Landlord Boot Camp Will Be Held on Saturday, April 13th

Hi Everyone – I hope that you are all well on this rainy Friday afternoon.  I just wanted to alert those of you that use the Landlord-Tenant forms that I draft for Wisconsin Legal Blank, that I recently re-wrote the Nonstandard Rental Provisions (NSRP) form for clarity and legal conformity.  I recommend that you update your NSRP form accordingly to better protect yourself and your rental property.
Continue Reading Updated Nonstandard Rental Provisions form Now Available at Wisconsin Legal Blank

When it reviews a wetland individual permit application, the DNR must consider the impacts of the entire project proposing wetland fill, and not only the physical footprint of the proposed fill itself. DNR’s purview of secondary impacts extends to otherwise unregulated activities of the permitted project where they result in significant adverse environmental consequences.

In its December 5 decision, Kohler Co. v. Wisconsin DNR and Claudia Bricks and Friends of the Black River Forest (2021AP1187), the Wisconsin Court of
Continue Reading Wisconsin Appeals Court Upholds Rejection of Wetland Fill Permit in Kohler Golf Course Project

I apologize for getting on my soapbox here, but most of you are either landlords or spend more than 40 hours a week representing landlords or working with them. If you don’t fall into one of the above categories, you probably will not want to read this blog post.

I recommend that you read this recent article about Matt Desmond, the author of Evicted and now the author of Poverty. It is called “Princeton’s Matthew Desmond Gets Everything Wrong
Continue Reading Matt Desmond, Author of "Evicted" Has Some Detractors, Including Myself

Unless told otherwise, a contractor who works on a project expects that, if a dispute arises out of its compliance with the contract or payment thereunder, the dispute will be heard locally and will be governed by local law. Laws exist to help reinforce this expectation. In Wisconsin, the Construction Lien Law – Wis. Stat. section 779.135(2) – renders void any provision in a contract for construction in the state calling for the application of another jurisdiction’s laws or
Continue Reading Think Wisconsin Construction Disputes Use a Local Venue? Maybe Not

My next Landlord Boot Camp for the Rental Property Association of Wisconsin, Inc. (formerly known as the AASEW) will be held on Saturday, April 13, 2024. This Boot Camp will be an in-person event.  There will not be a virtual option.  
There have been so many changes in how evictions and other Landlord-Tenant law matters are handled post COVID that I strongly recommend that you attend this Boot Camp to get caught up on all the changes, even
Continue Reading The Next LANDLORD BOOT CAMP Seminar Will Be Held on Saturday, April 13, 2024.

Earlier today a client emailed me and asked whether or not his property management company could charge a rental applicant an application fee, over and above the cost of a consumer credit report, to cover the company’s time and energy reviewing and vetting the rental applicant.
Based on my review of Wisconsin law, a landlord may charge an application fee but it must be refundable.  So while a landlord can charge an application fee, its probably not the kind
Continue Reading Can A Landlord Charge an Application Fee To A Prospective Tenant In Wisconsin?

Below is a summary of the many Landlord-Tenant law bills that were drafted in late 2023 and are hoping to move forward in 2024.  You will note that many of these bills are trying to undue the many laws that were passed between 2012-2018 (i.e., Act 143, Act 76, Act 176, and Act 317).  Whether or not these bills have any real possibility to become law now, it is clear that there has been a lot of work behind
Continue Reading A Summary of Landlord-Tenant Bills That Some In Madison Are Hoping to Get Passed in 2024

There are only a few days left to sign up for Landlord Boot Camp which will take place this Saturday, November 4th from 8:30 am – 6 pm
I will be covering everything that you need to know about residential landlord-tenant law in Wisconsin.  We will be covering the all important basics like:

  • Screening and Qualifying the Prospective Applicant and Fair Housing Issues
  • Rental Documents
  • ATCP 134: Residential Rental Practice Rules and Security Deposits
  • Causes for Evictions
  • Notices Terminating

Continue Reading Just A Few Days Left to Sign Up for Landlord Boot Camp this Saturday

Yesterday was a busy day for those legislators that are not fans of landlords or what we do as a profession.  As if the rampant sealing of eviction records that is prevalent in Milwaukee County was not bad enough (so that future landlords will not be aware that an applicant had a recent eviction), below is a list of proposed legislation from Madison that is being passed around by the authors trying to get co-sponsors.

If this isn’t a
Continue Reading Proposed Anti-Landlord Legislation Being Shopped Around Seeking Co-Sponsors

In the process of obtaining building permits, business owners and real estate developers may encounter situations where they need to address special use variances with the Board of Zoning Appeals. Understanding when these variances are required is crucial to navigating the complex world of zoning and land use regulations. Because the procedures that must be followed when handling these types of appeals can be complicated, it is crucial for property owners and developers to work with an attorney who
Continue Reading When Will Use Variances Be Required for Building Permits?

As the construction industry continues to evolve, it becomes increasingly important for construction companies to safeguard themselves against potential risks and liabilities. One crucial aspect of risk management is ensuring that downstream contractors and suppliers have adequate insurance coverage.

This article outlines steps construction companies should take to ensure proper insurance coverage for their downstream partners and discusses the significance of certificates of insurance, the limitations they pose, and the importance of various policy endorsements.
About Certificates of Insurance
Continue Reading Ensuring Adequate Insurance Coverage for Downstream Contractors and Suppliers

My next Landlord Boot Camp for the Rental Property Association of Wisconsin, Inc. (formerly known as the AASEW) will be held on Saturday November 4, 2023. This Boot Camp will be in-person and streamed virtually. You choose the format that best serves you.
There have been so many changes in how evictions and other Landlord-Tenant law matters are handled post COVID that I strongly recommend that you attend this Boot Camp to get caught up on all the changes. 
Continue Reading Next LANDLORD BOOT CAMP will be November 4, 2023