"Just as every piece of real estate is unique, so too is every client. I try to learn a client’s goals and priorities at the outset of a transaction, then work as a team with the client, the client’s staff, and other parties to the transaction to close the deal in a manner that, hopefully, accomplishes those goals set by the client."
When Paul came to Hirschler Fleischer more than 30 years ago, he had several options of practice areas in which he could concentrate. He liked the idea of a practice where he could assist clients to work with others towards a mutual goal, the tangible result being a closing of the transaction in which all the parties would benefit. His even-tempered manner and pragmatic approach has helped Paul guide a diverse group of clients through many types of real estate transactions. Wherever possible he tries to find ways to add value to each transaction, whether, for example, through experience in structuring transactions to minimize costs to his clients, or through referrals to excellent service providers.
Paul Davenport serves as vice chair of Hirschler’s real estate section and co-chair of the firm’s commercial real estate finance and investment practice group.
Selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America, Real Estate, Woodward/White, Inc., 2012, 2014-2019
Named “Lawyer of the Year,” Real Estate, Richmond, Best Lawyers, 2014
Named to “Legal Elite,” Real Estate/Land Use, Virginia Business, 2007, 2013-2014, 2017
AV rated, Martindale-Hubbell
Paul has represented many types of clients, from national REITs, real estate syndicators and sophisticated regional real estate developers, to individuals with a need for a guiding hand to deal with a single piece of real estate. His approach to practice has resulted in working with many of his clients on multiple transactions over many years. Some examples of his work are as follows:
- Paul has represented developers in land assemblage, development, financing, leasing and sale of many product types, including suburban office parks, large and small residential projects, and mixed-use urban projects.
- During the heyday of tenant-in-common syndications, he represented several real estate syndicators in acquiring and syndicating projects across the country, such as retail shopping centers and hotels, to tenant-in-common investors. For example, he assisted one client in acquiring and syndicating chain hotels in Atlantic City, at the BWI Airport in Maryland, and a boutique hotel in South Beach, Florida.
- Paul represented a developer as borrower’s counsel in connection with the acquisition and redevelopment of a tired, sparsely leased office building in midtown Richmond. The building was redeveloped into office, retail and apartment space, financed with historic tax credits, new market tax credits and traditional construction financing. He assisted another client in the acquisition of an old office tower in downtown Richmond, and assisted the client to convert the building into two hotels, a ground floor restaurant, and a roof-top restaurant/bar, also with historic tax credits, new market tax credits and conventional construction financing.
- While large, complex transactions tend to be the bulk of Paul’s work, he enjoys guiding clients who are not in the real estate business through their real estate related transactions. For example, one of his clients bought and developed land from an elderly woman, who needed assistance in dealing with her income from that sale. That seller retained Paul to guide her through a 1031 tax deferred exchange to purchase a small office building and several beach rental properties. Through the years, Paul has assisted her in refinancing those properties, and ultimately selling the office building as new retail development expanded into the neighborhood.
- A necessary component of successfully representing commercial real estate clients is the ability to help the client keep its projects leased. Paul has many years of experience in negotiating leases, subleases, ground leases and related documents.
Beyond the Law
Beyond the Law
Paul and his wife are long-time, very passionate UVA basketball fans, seldom missing a game at the John Paul Jones Arena in Charlottesville. They attended their very first college basketball game at University Hall when Paul was a first year law student. On January 29, 1983, the sixth-ranked Hoos pounded the eighth-ranked Louisville Cardinals 98-81, with Ralph Sampson scoring 35 points. With that as a start to their college basketball experience, they were destined to became lifelong fans. If you see a car with Virginia plate number “CTBFAN”, beep if you are a UVA fan, that is Paul! Paul is also an avid (but lousy) golfer, who has played 162 courses (and still counting).
University of Virginia, J.D.
Roanoke College, B.A.