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Real Estate Law Archives

After the flood: What to do when dealing with flood damages

As Ottawa grapples with the long-term impacts of climate change and extreme weather events, property owners living on or near a floodplain will need advice on what to do and where to turn to for support. This blog does not provide all of the answers, but it is designed to give readers guidance if you own land on or near a flood prone area. 

Super Priorities and Unpaid Taxes in Canada

"Tax legislation equips the government with very powerful tools to ensure that taxes are properly paid. One of those tools is the deemed trust... In this action, the Crown seeks to recover money that [TD Bank] received from one of its customers in payment of a loan secured by a mortgage. The Crown asserts that the customer failed to remit GST amounts that he had collected, thus bringing the deemed trust into operation... I am allowing the Crown's claim. The legislation imposes an obligation on the Bank to repay the money it received from its customer and it necessarily excludes the defence of bona fide purchaser for value. Even if this result appears harsh, it was clearly contemplated by Parliament."

Cancelling a Real Estate Offer in Ontario

You may have seen the phrase "this offer shall be irrevocable by" on your Agreement of Purchase and Sale during a real estate transaction in Ontario. This phrase usually contains a specific date and time and states "after which time, if not accepted, this offer shall be null and void and the deposit returned to the buyer without interest."

Federal Budget 2019: Possible incentives for first time homebuyers

Real estate professionals at Merovitz Potechin LLP are considering the impact of possible incentives for first time homebuyers recently announced by Federal Finance Minister, Bill Morneau, in Federal Budget 2019. The marquee announcement is the creation of a shared equity mortgage incentive program partnering up first time homebuyers with Canada Mortgage Housing Corporation ("CMHC").AdobeStock_211320042_resized.jpg

Mortgage Approval Basics in Ontario

Applying for a mortgage in Ontario involves a variety of steps that can often come as a surprise to those that are purchasing their first home. The mortgage approval process can seem lengthy or complicated if new buyers have not taken the time to understand some of the basics. Before applying for a new mortgage, read below to understand some basics of the process, including information about pre-approvals, mortgage commitments, mortgage obligations, lender profiles and condition fulfillment. AdobeStock_158582238_resized.jpg

Disclosure of Murder or Death in an Ontario Real Estate Sale

When looking to purchase real estate in Ontario, buyers should always perform their due diligence regarding the property. While this makes sense in terms of performing a physical home inspection with a licensed home inspector before finalizing the agreement, what about investigating non-physical issues with the property such as whether or not a murder ever took place in the home? In this blog post, we will explore the legal issues surrounding disclosure during real estate transactions in Ontario and whether or not sellers must legally disclose unnatural deaths that have taken place in the home.AdobeStock_216232762_resized.jpg

Shared Common Elements in a Condominium - An explanation of POTL and CECC

Condominium developers may be required by the City to purchase a Parcel of Tied Land ("POTL"), as authorized in the Condominium Act, 1998 (the "Act"), to be tied to their common elements. Conversely, condominium owners currently enjoying an informal arrangement of shared costs for common elements may want to formalize it by exploring a Common Elements Condominium Corporation ("CECC"). What is a POTL and a CECC, how are they linked, and what are the advantages of having them if you are a condominium developer or condominium owner? 

Interim Occupancy Fees Related to a New Build Condominium Purchase

When a purchaser buys a newly constructed condominium unit, the builder will often allow them to move in prior to being able to transfer legal title to the property.  This occurs in almost all new build condominiums since the legal process required to declare a condominium building requires a survey of the finished product. This is also known as "interim occupancy", when an occupancy permit is available.

Buying by Power of Sale

Occasionally homeowners are unable to maintain the mortgage on a property. When this happens, I am often called upon by lenders to help. I am being retained by the lender to recover the funds that were borrowed, plus interest and costs. There is nothing nefarious about it. Most lenders give the homeowner ample opportunity through non-legal processes to get back into good standing. However, for a variety of reasons, the homeowner is unable to put the mortgage back into good standing. I will then issue a Notice of Sale to warn the owner that if the default is not cured, the property will be sold. When the warning period expires, I will then list the property for sale to others in order to recover the debt. You may be looking at purchasing a house from a lender who is selling the house using the authority granted to them under the power of sale provisions of the Mortgages Act.

Asking the right questions is critical when buying real estate

Failing to ask the right questions can set new home buyers up for disappointment. Every home has it strengths, weaknesses and quirks, so it is a good idea for buyers in Ontario to clarify what issues may exist before finalizing a real estate purchase. Here are a few questions worth asking when walking through a home.Questions about the history of a home can be very revealing for prospective buyers. Specifically, the sales history of a home can reveal certain things about its marketability and the competition that may be involved in closing the deal. Has the house been on the market for a long time? Has it ever been foreclosed on? These all might offer clues to whether a lower bid could be accepted for the home.

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