When asked to describe my complex and decades-old practice, I usually tell people that it comes down to dirt—including anything my clients may find underneath that land or decide to build on top of it. If there’s one common denominator to these dirt-related deals, it is that they demand you move quickly and creatively, measuring and managing risk without becoming paralyzed by it. Our clients know that I excel at achieving this balance.
A real estate and oil and gas attorney with more than four decades of experience, David Drumm regularly guides clients through every aspect of complex sales, leasing, and financing deals in these sectors. Clients have included hotel owner/operators, real estate developers, owners and managers of office buildings and multi-use developments, as well as managers of inbound real estate investment by non-U.S. clients. David also has significant experience handling oil and gas transactions and other development projects, which can reach into the billions of dollars, for (often multiple generations of) family businesses or closely owned groups, for which he also often serves as outside “general counsel.”
“Oil and gas entrepreneurs and independent business owners in the real estate space are my kinds of people,” David explains. “They aren’t simply sitting behind a desk pushing paper. Sometimes they need to take informed risks in order to get deals done, and I help them do both as safely and strategically as possible.” One of the ways he accomplishes this is by assisting clients with “hard money” lending or connecting them to “club investors.” In fact, David has developed a reputation as the go-to for these alternative financing arrangements, which create a direct relationship between investor and collateral—but exist outside of the traditional banking or investment house structures. They offer more flexibility and speed when they are essential – for example, if a client will contractually default if they cannot secure funding, and they have days, not months, to do it. “It is not uncommon for me to be closing the loan, drafting the documents, and reviewing and cleaning up title within 72 hours of receiving the first package. Most real estate lawyers simply aren’t wired this way,” he adds.
In addition to sharing his client’s entrepreneurial gusto, David confesses to also being “a bit of a pointy-headed intellectual wonk,” who loves property law and contract law, and finds an almost aesthetic beauty in their pure analysis and application.
But here’s what matters most to clients—David doesn’t just know the real estate and oil and gas industries and the law pertaining to them, backwards and forwards; he cares enough to get to know their business and really see it through their eyes. Whether they are a sophisticated owner-operator of a high-end hotel chain, or a small developer who may be a recent immigrant to this country and needs help acclimating to the business and legal environment in Texas, clients can count on David to meet and assist them at the exact level they require.
Oil and gas entrepreneurs and independent business owners in the real estate space are my kinds of people, David explains. They aren’t simply sitting behind a desk pushing paper. Sometimes they need to take informed risks in order to get deals done, and I help them do both as safely and strategically as possible.David G. Drumm