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Rare amphibian delays commercial real estate sale, development

Nature enthusiasts in South Carolina may be familiar with the marbled salamander, a small amphibian that is relatively common in our state. However, the population of this creature isn't as robust in other parts of the country -- a realization that may sink a major commercial development in another state.

When individuals are looking to buy or sell commercial property, the presence of certain wildlife could play a major role in the success of a proposed transaction. This is why it's critical for both parties involved in such land deals should carefully examine all aspects of the acreage in order to take precautions to avoid getting a raw deal.

In this case, the land where the salamander was found has remained a large, open lot for many years. The local municipality that owns the land hoped to sell the land to raise funds for critical city projects. At this point, no offers have been made on the land, but the city has likely invested resources into preparing the land for sale.

The property in question has already been subdivided into multiple sections. One portion of the land has already been nixed for sale in order to safeguard a well, while 18 acres has been split into six- and 12-acre parcels that include several lots slated for development. As the public conversation continues, some hope that a deal can be reached in which all parties (including buyers, sellers and other local interests) can walk away satisfied.

Being involved in a commercial real estate transaction can create opportunity for many people, so it's important to make sure that any land disputes are effectively resolved before they become unmanageable problems.

Source: Boston Globe, "Presence of rare salamander jeopardizes proposed land sale," Michele Morgan Bolton, March 6, 2013

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