We have been handling real estate transactions since we opened our doors in 1975. Whether you are buying or selling your home or refinancing, our goal is to make the transaction as easy and stress-free as possible while ensuring that our clients’ interests are fully protected.
Buying a Home
Buying a home is probably the most significant investment you will ever make. From the time you submit an Offer to Purchase to the day you receive the keys, you need the advice and assistance of professionals including your legal advisor.
Offer to Purchase for Buyers
The first step in buying a home is submitting the offer, called a “Real Estate Purchase Contract”. Your offer is usually prepared and presented with the assistance of your real estate agent. Once your offer is accepted, it is a legal contract, and you are bound by all of the terms. Remember – if it’s not in writing, it’s not part of the Offer.
If your offer is accepted you have several steps to deal with to prepare for the closing. It will be your responsibility to arrange for financing, fire insurance and utility hook-ups.
Often, if you are selling and buying properties at the same time, you will need the money for your purchase before you receive the money from your sale. Talk to your realtor, your banker and us to determine if you will require interim financing.
Liddell Law Office will prepare all of the necessary sale, purchase or mortgage documents.
We will ensure that any mortgages or liens are discharged, confirm that any encroachment or compliance problems are identified and dealt with and advise you of any problems. We will also register the property into your name, register any new mortgage security and pay the purchase money.
Finally we will provide you with a complete written report with copies of all relevant documents to show that you have good title to the property.
Selling a Home
Selling your home is an important event involving hundreds of thousands of dollars. With that much money involved, you want to be sure everything goes smoothly and according to plan. It is important that you have experienced legal assistance.
Offer to Purchase for Sellers
Review any offer to purchase that you receive in detail with your realtor. Only sign or accept an offer when you are satisfied with its contents. Make sure you understand all of your obligations and that the purchaser has provided a sufficient deposit.
If you are selling a house, you will likely need to provide a Real Property Report and evidence that your home complies with all municipal zoning by-laws. We suggest that you obtain the Real Property Report well in advance of closing. If there are any problems such as missing development permits or encroachments they could take several weeks to resolve. If not resolved in advance, they could cause significant delay or even result in a reduction of the sale price or termination of the sale.
If you are selling a condominium, you will likely need to provide a complete set of condominium documents. This includes a set of the latest financial statements, minutes from recent board meetings, minutes from the Annual General Meeting, a copy of the reserve fund study and a copy of the bylaws.
Remember, you are responsible for cancelling your insurance, monthly tax payment plan and utilities.
What happens after offer is accepted.
Once you accept the offer your realtor will provide a copy to your lawyer. We will conduct tax, land titles office and other searches. If any of our searches disclose a problem we will contact you to discuss a resolution.
We will prepare transfer of land, statement of adjustments, undertakings, and other conveyancing documents. If there are mortgages or liens on your property we will obtain payout statements and ensure they are paid out and discharged. We will handle everything required to offer clear title to the purchaser.
If you are planning to use your sale proceeds to purchase a new home, make sure you tell us well in advance. You must also plan carefully if both your sale and your purchase overlap or happen within a couple of days of each other. You may have to arrange interim financing or make other arrangements to ensure that the right money is in the right place at the right time.
Receiving your Sale Proceeds
We will receive the sale proceeds on your behalf and deposit them into our trust account. Money covering the following items will be deducted: Any outstanding realty commissions, any amounts required to discharge liens or mortgages on your property, any tax or other adjustments and our legal fees and necessary disbursements. The balance remaining is provided to you by way of trust cheque. If you are using the sale proceeds to buy a new home, we will transfer funds for use in the purchase.