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The Bookshelf

August 24, 1986

Construction Law for Owners and Builders by McNeill Stokes and Judith L. Finuf (McGraw-Hill, 367 pages) deals with the basic relationships, responsibilities and liabilities of the different participants in the building process. The authors, both attorneys, explain how owners can avoid costly construction contract problems and litigation. The book includes scores of cases, clauses and forms that supplement and amplify the various discussions. The appendixes include facsimile forms, contracts, questionnaires and a table of the legal cases cited in the book.

Successful Real Estate Sales Agreements (Fourth Edition, by Eik Jorgensen, Axiom Press, Publishers, P. O. Box 1668, Burlingame, Calif. 94011-1668, $20.28 postpaid, paperback). With each edition of Successful Real Estate Agreements, author Jorgensen has introduced new chapters to keep its position as a leading guidebook for correct, concise real estate contracts. The new edition includes a chapter on disclosures and a chapter about new types of form contracts, and discusses important recent legal decisions and legislation.

Aggressive Tax Avoidance for Real Estate Investors by John T. Reed (Reed Publishing, 342 Bryan Drive, Danville, Calif. 94526, sixth edition, 267 pages, $21.95 plus $2.50 shipping and sales tax in California) continues to be one of the most readable and useful books of its type. Reed points out that "aggressiveness" is legal and makes economic sense for investors. In the event your aggressiveness has aroused the interest of the Internal Revenue Service, Reed has a chapter on dealing with that august agency. Virtually everything necessary for a real estate investor, including exchanging and depreciation, is covered in detail.

How to Find Hidden Real Estate Bargains by Robert Irwin (McGraw-Hill, 140 pages, $17.95) contends that real estate bargains can be found today, tells what to look for and then what to do when one is found. Irwin, a real estate broker, investor and lecturer, emphasizes ways to uncover genuine bargains rather than ways to manipulate sellers and describes how a person can recognize and profit from current conditions in the real estate market.

How to Use Leverage to Maximize Your Real Estate Investment Return by John T. Reed (Reed Publishing c/o PBS, P.O. Box 643, Cambridge, Mass. 02139, $19.95 plus $2.50 shipping costs, plus sales tax in California) uses 301 pages to tell the down side of the rosy picture painted by the no-money-down crowd. Properly used, leverage can help a real estate investor immensely; improperly used, it can be a quick path to the bankruptcy courts. Reed's chatty style makes this book easy to read, despite its highly complicated subject matter. If the current efforts at tax reform succeed, it will be instantly out of date; until that time, it's worth reading.

Construction Law edited by G. M. Stein (Matthew Bender & Co., 235 East 45th St., New York, N.Y. 10017, four volumes, $320) covers every aspect of the subject in about 1,000 pages, dealing with topics from a developer's first negotiations to liability for the finished structure. The work is intended for owners, developers, designers, engineers, builders and the attorneys who represent them. More than 20 authors, each an authority on a particular topic, collaborated on the four-year project.

244 House Plans for Better Living (published by Home Planners Inc., 23761 Research Drive, Farmington Hills, Mich. 48024; 192 pages; $3.95, including postage and handling) previews 1,250 home designs. Construction blueprints are available at extra cost.

Winning and Keeping Third-Party Business (by Terry Needham, president of Relocation/Realty Consultants Inc., the publisher; 607 West 58 Terrace, Kansas City, Mo. 64113; 125 pages; paperback; $19.95) is addressed to the real estate professional who is considering developing the ability to service third-party accounts. It also examines recent history of the relocation industry.

California Retirement Guide by Pat Loomis and Lou Ann Pemper (California Retirement Alternatives Inc., P.O. Box 1316, San Juan Capistrano, Calif. 92693, 221 pages, $11.95) is a comprehensive guide to more than 300 developments in more than 130 cities in California. The authors include data on apartments, condominiums, manufactured housing projects, single-family homes and other projects catering to the 55-and-over market. They cover all areas of the state, from Redding in the north to San Diego in the south. Factual data abounds, including details on climate, hospitals, newspapers, shopping and other important facts.


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