Freeman, Freeman & Smiley LLP

Professional Details

Jon S. Grizel, Partner

A member of our  Real Estate Department, Jon S. Grizel represents commercial real estate and financial services companies in securing and providing financing and asset-based loans, purchase and sale transactions, real estate joint ventures, and industrial and office leasing.

Wide range of real estate transactions

Mr. Grizel's expertise encompasses a wide range of real estate transactional practice areas. He navigates clients through acquisition and construction financing, mezzanine financing, sale leaseback financing, and complex equity and debt investment structures. 

He also frequently provides counsel in office and industrial leasing on behalf of landlords and tenants, and represents buyers and sellers in the purchase and sale of improved and unimproved commercial and industrial properties.

Advising institutional lenders

Mr. Grizel represents lenders and borrowers in loan transactions secured by commercial real estate and/or personal property assets. He has devoted a significant amount of his practice to advising institutional lenders in loan restructurings, loan purchases and sales, intercreditor agreements, foreclosures, deed-in-lieu transactions, and positioning REO assets for sale. In addition to institutional lenders, Mr. Grizel’s clients include finance companies and investment funds, as well as joint ventures and developers.

Professional & Community Involvement

  • California Hotel & Lodging Association
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association
  • California State Bar Association
  • Orange County Bar Association

Representative Clients and Matters

  • Represented purchaser in connection with proposed acquisition of 70 acre shopping center in Northern California including negotiating and documenting purchase agreement and advising client with respect to title matters and general due diligence. Negotiated and documented acquiring entity joint venture agreement with institutional investor. Negotiated and documented management and leasing agreements.
  • Advised client as primary equity investor of $55,000,000 in various Southern California commercial developments and raw land acquisition in connection with restructure of interrelated joint ventures. Negotiated and documented amendments and agreements to accomplish restructure. Represented client in outright acquisition of commercial properties previously included as assets in joint venture ownership. Representation included extensive negotiation as to environmental matters including allocation of responsibility for potential environmental liability and placement of environmental insurance.
  • Represented lender/seller in repositioning a foreclosed, high profile hotel/condominium property for sale in Northern California. The deal required completing construction, procuring permits, Interfacing with City and County regulators, and negotiating and documenting sale agreement.
  • Represented borrower in $85 million syndicated loan for construction of student housing in Southern California.
  • Represented lender in $18.3 million construction loan for shopping center in Rancho Mirage, California. The transaction Included negotiations with subordinated debt holder.
  • Represented mezzanine lender in negotiating and documenting a $14.4 million conveyance-In-lieu of foreclosure transaction, transferring to lender pledged membership interests in a multi-family residential development in Arizona.
  • Represented lender in negotiating and documenting $18 million deed-in-lieu transaction with contractors and home purchaser of partially constructed high-end residential development in Los Angeles. The transaction involved coordinating with the Department of Real Estate (DRE) on compliance matters.
  • Represented lender in negotiation and documentation of $100 million deed-in-lieu transaction of luxury fractional interest resort property. Coordinated, negotiated and documented settlement agreements with borrower, guarantors, contractors and adjoining land owner. Further coordinated matters regarding the Department of Real Estate (DRE) compliance, title coverage issues pertaining to mechanics' lien coverage and stop notice claims; negotiated and documented amended and restated easement agreements; documented and implemented assignment of loan to affiliate and foreclosure by affiliated lender; negotiated and documented sales and marketing management agreement, brokerage agreements and termination of various service agreements.
  • Readied numerous residential projects in California for acquisition and development, representing managing member in structuring joint ventures and negotiating asset management and third party service provider agreements.
  • Represented developer in purchasing a 15-acre industrial property in Los Angeles County, which included extensive analysis and negotiation of risk allocation associated with  significant environmental contamination. Negotiated a holdback portion of the purchase price for post-closing remediation of environmental matters.
  • Represented high profile charitable foundation in leasing 18,000 square foot office space in Los Angeles. Transaction included many complicated issues such as termination rights and unique subleasing stipulations.
  • Represented national technology company as a tenant in a Silicon Valley 80,000 square foot office lease.
  • Represented lender in positioning 86 partially entitled lots/REO residential developments in Southern California for sale, including negotiating amendments to association documents with master homeowner association and modifying Department of Real Estate (DRE) applications.
  • Represented seller in sale of a $25 million office tower and defeasance of $10 million loan. This complex transaction included extensive negotiation regarding purchase price holdback for pending completion of extensive tenant improvements in multiple tenant premises.