Property
Spring 2009
Professor Marcilynn A. Burke

Coursepage Outline

General Class Information

Links to Useful Websites

Course Outline

Syllabus

Meeting Place TUII - 240
Meeting Times

Monday through Wednesday 10:30 - 11:45 a.m.

Office Hours

Mondays: 5:45 - 7:00 p.m.; Wednesdays: 2:30 - 4:30 p.m; or by appointment (e-mail to schedule)

Exam

May 12, 2009, 9:00 a.m.- 1:00 p.m.

If you require special accomodations, please see Student Services.

EVERYONE please meet in TUII-240 to receive a copy of the exam. Please take a seat at a desk to receive initial instructions and to complete initial administrative matters.

Rooms: Typing - TUII-240 & TUII-211; Handwriting - TUII-215.

Here is a sample exam. Here is a sample answer sheet for the multiple choice. Here are sample exam instructions. NOTE: These instructions are subject to change. Be sure to read the actual instructions when you receive you copy of the exam on exam day.

Required Text

Jesse Dukeminier & James E. Krier, Property (6th ed., Aspen Law & Business, 2006) [hereinafter "Casebook"]

Perspectives on Property Law (Robert C. Ellickson, et al. eds., 3d ed., Aspen Law & Business, 2002) [hereinafter "Perspectives"]

Linda H. Edwards, Estates in Land and Future Interests: A Step-by-Step Guide (3d ed. 2009) [hereinafter "Estates in Land"]

Grading Your final grade will be based upon the final exam and class participation. Class participation will be counted in accordance with the Law Center's policy. The class will be divided into 3 panels for class participation purposes. On the day that your panel is "on", you will potentially be called upon. Each panel will be on every 3d class.
Coverage Anticipate that the coverage will be approximately 15-25 pages per class. Assignments will be detailed below as the semester progresses.
Attendance Requirements In accordance with the Law Center's requirement, you must attend at least 80% of the classes. Attendance will bet taken via a roll sheet passed around at the beginning of class. It is your responsibility to be on time and sign the roll sheet when it comes by your seat. Please see the General Class Requirements for additional information regarding absences.
General Class Requirements Please see the linked document for General Class Requirements regarding attendance, participation, use of computers, exam policies, grading, and other important items.
Academic Enrichment Assistant

Bonnie Kim, bkim8@central.uh.edu

Links to Useful Documents

General Class Requirements

Panels/Call List

Links to Useful Web sites

City of Houston Planning and Development Department

Houston Code of Ordinances

Municipal Codes On-line

Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ)

Texas General Land Office (GLO)

Texas Historical Commission (THC)

Texas State Statutes

Announcements


Course Outline

I.

INTRODUCTION

Property: What is it, how can I get some, and why do I care?

II.

TRANSFERS OF LAND

The American Dream According to Fannie Mae

III.

ESTATES AND FUTURE INTERESTS

My house is an estate? And who can (or can't) inherit it?

IV.

THE "ESTATE FOR YEARS": LANDLORD-TENANT

What every law student should have known before getting his/her apartment.

V.

LAND USE CONTROLS/NON-POSSESSORY ESTATES

When someone else can tell you what you can do with your property.

VI.

EMINENT DOMAIN AND TAKINGS

This land is my land or is this land your land?

Syllabus

Date (2009) Topic and Slides Assignment
Jan. 20-28

Professor Greg Vetter


Feb. 2

Aquisition by Capture Cont'd

Capture Cont'd

Required:
Casebook: 27-35, 183-85 (inheritance terms)

Estates in Land: 1-6

Perspectives: 180-90

Feb. 3

THE COMMONS

Commons

Required:
Casebook: 35-50

Feb. 4

The Commons Cont'd

(See slides for Feb. 3)

Required:
Perspectives: 119-29

Feb. 9

The Problem of Social Cost: The Coase Theorem & Its Limitations

Coase

Required:
Perspectives: 200-21

Optional:
Ronald H. Coase, The Problem of Social Cost, 3 J.L. & Econ. 1 (1960) (the entire article - 23 pages)

Feb. 10

ACQUSITION BY CREATION

Creation

Required:
Casebook: 51-59, Virtual Works, Inc. v. Volkswagen of America, Inc., 238 F.3d 264 (4th Cir. 2001)

Optional:
Trademark Infringement in Domain Names

Feb. 11

Acquisition by Creation Cont'd (and Personhood)

Creation Cont'd

Required:
Casebook: 62-65

Perspectives: 8-19

Casebook: 69-81

Perspectives: 336-43

Optional:
White v. Samsung Electronics America, Inc., 971 F.2d 1395 (9th Cir. 1992)

Feb. 16

Acquisition by Creation Cont'd

Anticommons

Required:
Casebook: 81-86, 48-49 note 5

Perspectives: 159-69

Optional:
Michael A. Heller, The Boundaries of Private Property, 108 Yale L.J. 1163, 1167 (1999)

Feb. 17

Acquisition by Adverse Possession

Adverse Possession

Required:
Casebook: 115-36

Perspectives: 190-99

 

Feb. 18

Acqusition by Adverse Possession Cont'd and THE LAND TRANSACTION: The Contract of Sale

AP Cont'd & The Land Transaction

Required:
Casebook: 136-44, 453-54

Residential Contract of Sale (Texas Real Estate Commission)

Casebook: 472-74, 478-88

Feb. 23

The Contract of Sale cont'd and The Deed

The Land Transaction Cont'd

Required:
Casebook: 488-93, 494 (skip Note on Merger)-502, 510-18 (skip notes 2 & 6)

General Warranty Deed

Special Warranty Deed

Quitclaim Deed

Optional:
Suzanna Hartzell-Baird, When Sex Doesn't Sell: Mitigating the Damaging Effect of Megan's Law on Property Values, 35 REAL ESTATE L.J. 353 (2006).

Feb. 24

The Deed Cont'd and The Mortgage

Deeds

Required:
Casebook: 518-21, 532-46

 

Feb. 25

The Mortgage Cont'd and TITLE ASSURANCE: The Recording System

Deeds Cont'd & Mortgages

Required:
Casebook: 546-65

Optional:
The Crisis of Credit Visualized (11-minute video)

Mar. 2

Title Assurance: The Recording System Cont'd

Indexes

Required:
Casebook: 565-71
Mar. 3

Title Assurance: The Recording System Cont'd

Recording Acts

Required:
Casebook: 574-92 (please prepare written answers to questions in note 2 on p. 578-79)

Perspectives: 304-19

Mar. 4

Title Assurance: The Recording System Cont'd

Chain of Title Problems

Required:
Casebook: 592-604
Mar. 9

Title Assurance: The Recording System Cont'd; THE SYSTEM OF ESTATES: The Life Estate

Inquiry & Estates

Required:
Casebook: 608-12, 183-85 (Inheritance of a Fee Simple - no Notes and Problems)

Estates: 7-19

Casebook: 189-206

Mar. 10

The System of Estates Cont'd: Defeasible Estates

Defeasible Estates

Required:
Estates: 21-37

Casebook: 208-13

Mar. 11

FUTURE INTERESTS

 

Required:
Estates: 39-49, 227-28
Mar. 16

SPRING BREAK

Mar. 17
Mar. 18
Mar. 23 Future Interests Cont'd

Required:
Estates: 52-83, 228-29

Added 03/23/09 Casebook: 230 (Problems)

Mar. 24

Future Interests Cont'd: The Rule Against Perpetuities

RAP

Required:
Estates: 85-96, 137-50

Casebook: 251-62

Mar. 25 Future Interests Cont'd: The Rule Against Perpetuities Cont'd

Required:
Estates: 151-66, 231

Mar. 30

CONCURRENT INTERESTS

Concurrent Interests

Required:
Casebook: 275-300

Mar. 31

Concurrent Interests Cont'd & LANDLORD-TENANT LAW

Concurrent Int. Cont'd & Landlord-Tenant

Required:
Casebook: 300-10, 363-68
Apr. 1

Landlord-Tenant Law Cont'd

Landlord-Tenant

Required:
Casebook: 368-88
Apr. 6

Landlord-Tenant Law Cont'd

Landlord-Tenant

Required:
Casebook: 393-410

Optional:
For a Texas case on a forcible entry and detainer suit that took a considerable amount of time to resolve, see Meridian Hotels, Inc. v. LHO Financing Partnership I, 97 S.W.3d 731 (Tex. 2003). The opinion is short, however.

Apr. 7

Landlord-Tenant Law Cont'd

Landlord-Tenant

Required:
Casebook: 410-18, 421-30 (skip note on illegal lease on 430-31)
Apr. 8

Landlord-Tenant Law Cont'd & JUDICIAL LAND USE CONTROLS: Nuisance

Landlord-Tenant Cont'd & Nuisance

Required:
Casebook: 431-440, 639-49 (skip note 2 on 642-43)
Apr. 13

Nuisance Cont'd & PRIVATE LAND USE CONTROLS: Easements

Nuisance Cont'd & Easements

Required:
Casebook: 649-77 (through note on licenses)
Apr. 14 No class
Apr. 15

Easements Cont'd

Easements Cont'd

Required:
Casebook: 682-96, 716-21
Apr. 20

Easements Cont'd & Covenants

Warning: Long Reading Assignment

Easements Cont'd  & Covenants

Required:
Casebook: 725-50 (including the introduction to "Creation of Covenants"), 755-62
Apr. 21

Covenants Cont'd

Covenants Cont'd

Required:
Casebook: 762-86
Apr. 22

Covenants Cont'd

Covenants Cont'd

Required:
Casebook: 786-93, 798-809, 810-11 (Note 3 only)

Optional:
Lakeside Village CC&Rs

Apr. 27

EMINENT DOMAIN & THE PROBLEM OF REGULATORY TAKINGS

Eminent Domain

Required:
Casebook: 941-56, 959-68

Optional:
Marcilynn A. Burke, MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING: Kelo v. City of New London, Babbitt v. Sweet Home, AND OTHER TALES FROM THE SUPREME COURT, 75 U. CINN. L. REV. 663 (2006).

Much Ado About Nothing Presentation

Asmara Tekle-Johnson and Hugh Rice Kelly, Limit TMC Inc.'s Power to Condemn, Houston Chron., Apr. 25, 2009

H.B. 3709 (repealing the power of eminent domain and
condemnation of residential property adjacent or contiguous to such the medical center for most purposes)

Apr. 28

Physical Occupations and Regulatory Takings

Takings Cont'd

Required:
Casebook: 973-80, 988-1006
Apr. 29

Takings Cont'd

Revised slides posted on afternoon of 04/29/09

Takings Cont'd

Required:
Lingle v. Chevron, Casebook: 1025-38

Optional:
Peter B. Lord, AfterNearly 50 Years, He's Ready to Build, Providence J.-Bull., June 25, 2008 (Palazzolo building one house on 3.6 acres).

May 4
Review Session

Students to come prepared with questions or to e-mail them ahead of time to be answered during the session.