Purchasing a Residential Property
Purchasing a property, whether it is a condominium unit or house, from a reseller or a new builder, is an important investment. There are several factors to consider when purchasing a property that a lawyer can guide you through and bring to your attention during the purchasing process, such as the following:
- Does the property comply with all by-laws? For example, is the fence height legal? Is the parking area allowed by zoning? How will any easements and rights of way effect or limit my use of property?
- Are there any special zoning or other rules or restrictions that apply to this property? For example, is it in a heritage district? Can you put in a clothesline? Is an above-ground swimming pool allowed? Is the sump pump discharging according to local regulations?
- Is the current owner leaving behind the appliances? The garden shed? The lighting fixtures? The curtains and blinds? Does the owner need to fix anything before the sale closes?
- Can you rent out the basement? Can you have a tenant?
- What does the condo’s status certificate tell you to expect? (if applicable)
- What do the mortgage papers from the bank mean? Can you pay off, refinance, to sell early without paying a penalty? Will your interest rate change? When?
- What does it mean to be “tenants in common” or “joint tenants” when you are purchasing the property with someone else?
- Is the title free and clear? Is the survey acceptable? Should you get title insurance?
- What costs should you expect (for example, adjustments, land transfer taxes, mortgage, property taxes, CMHC insurance, lawyer fees and disbursements)?
- Notice of Security for any rental equipment (if applicable)
- Condo Corporation/ Property Management (if applicable)