Mary S. Axelrad
Senior Counsel

The majority of my clients have worked with me for many years, in part because I insist on high-quality service, integrity and mutual respect in every legal engagement. I also enjoy serving as a mentor in the Houston community, whether I’m empowering women and girls through my charity leadership or providing guidance to the next generation of lawyers.

Mary Axelrad focuses her legal practice on financial services and real estate. She represents private and institutional lenders in complex transactions involving both real estate and asset-based loans. Mary's practice also includes restructuring and workouts.

Within her real estate practice, Mary works with clients involved in acquisitions, dispositions, lease negotiations, landlord-tenant relations, construction, multifamily projects and boundary disputes. Her clientele includes financial institutions, private lenders, developers, investors, small businesses, non-profit entities and high-net-worth individuals.

Mary frequently lectures at continuing legal education seminars sponsored by the State Bar of Texas and by the University of Texas. She previously served on the board of directors for CREW Houston (Commercial Real Estate Women) and has twice served on the board of directors for the Texas Association of Bank Counsel.

Dedicated to community service, Mary is on the board of directors for The Women’s Home, a non-profit organization which focuses on building communities to help women in crisis regain control of their lives. The Women’s Home also provides transitional housing for women with substance abuse or mental health issues. Mary also serves on the board of trustees for The Women’s Resource of Greater Houston, which helps women and girls make choices toward becoming independent, productive and financially stable. 

Representative Experience
  • Representation as counsel for a privately-held real estate investment firm in the development and sale of commercial property (including retail) in Fort Bend County.   
  • Representation as counsel for a privately-held real estate investment firm in connection with its acquisitions of two separate business condominium developments in Travis County.
  • Representation as counsel for a privately-held real estate investment firm in connection with the negotiation of both the original construction loan and subsequent refinance of a mixed-use high rise in Harris County. 
  • Representation of a financial institution in various construction loans in varying amounts up to $47,000,000 and in various commercial and industrial loans in varying amounts up to $70,000,000. 
  • Representation of a middle market private lender in various real estate related (non-construction) loans. 
  • Representation of a financial institution in connection with a $43,000,000 loan facility secured by 23 properties in multiple jurisdictions.
  • Representation of small business owners in connection with the sale of their businesses and associated real estate.
  • Representation of a developer in the acquisition and subsequent development of several hundred acres in Galveston County.
  • Representation of a purchaser in connection with purchase of a portfolio of multi-family properties in multiple counties.
  • Representation as local counsel for purposes of providing mortgage opinion letters.
Thought Leadership / News
March 25, 2022 
 Speeches and Presentations
My State or Yours?  Conflicts of Law Considerations in Multi-State Mortgage Financing Transactions

American College of Real Estate Lawyers

March 18, 2021 
 Speeches and Presentations
Come Together: Working With Your Lender in Times of Trouble

TexasBarCLE Advanced Real Estate Drafting Course

December 10, 2020 
 Speeches and Presentations
How to Negotiate with Your Lender When the World is Upside Down

TexasBar CLE - Advanced Real Estate Strategies 2020

December 13, 2018 
 Speeches and Presentations
Show Me the Money
State Bar of Texas 12th Annual Advanced Real Estate Strategies 2018 Course
  • Selected by her peers for inclusion in Woodward/White, Inc.'s The Best Lawyers in America in the fields of Real Estate Law and Banking & Finance Law (2012 – 2022)
  • Named a Houstonia Magazine Top Lawyer in Houston (2018 - 2020)
Organizational Involvement

Professional Involvement, Memberships & Affiliations

  • American College of Real Estate Lawyers
  • Houston Bar Association
  • Texas Bar Association
  • Houston Bar Foundation, Continuing Life Fellow
  • Texas Bar Foundation, Sustaining Life Fellow
  • State Bar of Texas
    • Real Estate Forms Committee
    • REPTL Council

Community Involvement, Memberships & Affiliations

  • St. Luke’s United Methodist Church
  • Board of Directors, The Women’s Home
  • Board of Trustees, The Women’s Resource of Greater Houston 
  • J.D., South Texas College of Law Houston (1988)
  • B.A., Colorado College (1980)
Bar Admission
  • Texas
  • Spanish - Fluent