The purchase of a new home is an exciting time in a person’s life. Along with the excitement, however, there usually comes a fair amount of stress; the process can seem daunting and unfamiliar. This article is intended to help by providing information about the process and in particular the role of a lawyer in the purchase of a home.
A lawyer can assist you to prepare an offer for the purchase of a home. Most people, however, seek the assistance of a realtor when purchasing a home and to prepare an offer for the purchase.
An offer will usually contain “subject conditions”, meaning conditions that must be satisfied before you become legally bound to complete the purchase. Typical conditions on the purchase of a home include mortgage approval, home inspection, and a legal review of the title, contract and perhaps other aspects of purchase and property.
Once the subject conditions have been removed, you will need the services of a lawyer or notary to handle the purchase or as we call it, the “conveyance”, of the property. Your lawyer or notary will generally attend to the following:
- Reviewing the contract, if not already done before subject condition removal
- Preparing “statements of adjustments”, which allocate various costs and charges (such as property taxes and utilities) between the buyer and the seller as at the date of closing. The statement of adjustments will show exactly how much money you will need to pay to complete the purchase
- Preparing transfer and mortgage documents for registration
- Preparing a Property Transfer Tax (PTT) return. Most purchases are subject to PTT, there are some exemptions available to first time home buyers, buyers of newly constructed homes and others, all of which are subject to certain conditions
- Registering documents in the Land Title Office
- If there is a mortgage, satisfying conditions for funding
- Paying out the sale proceeds and ensuring that any financial charges of the seller on title are paid out and discharged
- Answering any questions that you may have about the purchase, and ensuring that all documents are properly signed and witnessed
- Reporting to you on completion of the purchase to confirm purchase details and to provide you with a copy of a “State of Title” certificate confirming your registered ownership
If you have any other questions about your purchase or the role and services that your lawyer can provide, please contact Jay Hack at Davidson Lawyers LLP at 250-542-1177.