When should I contact my lawyer and what info will they need to complete my purchase?


When should I be contacting a Lawyer regarding purchasing a home?

As soon as possible. Once the lawyer is involved, he/she can start working to protect the purchaser’s interests.   When it comes to buying and selling real estate, “the devil is in the details.” All too often, a fact or item incorrectly set out or completely overlooked in the original sale contract develops into a legal issue or matter of dispute between the buyer and seller. Such problems can be avoided by obtaining legal advice from a real estate lawyer early on in the process.

What information will my lawyer need to close my purchase?

A purchaser will need to provide the following information to his/her lawyer:

  • Agreement of Purchase and Sale – A copy of the agreement should be forwarded to the lawyer.
  • Name of the Mortgage Lender (if applicable) – It is common on home purchases for the purchaser’s lawyer to perform certain legal services for the mortgage lender.  These services include giving the lender a legal opinion on the title the purchaser will hold and ensuring the lender will have a valid mortgage on the property according to the mortgage agreement. 
  • Inspection Report – A copy of any building inspection report that the purchaser may have received if required as a condition of your title insurance policy.
  • Photo Identification – Copies of two pieces of photo identification (driver’s licence, passport, etc.) will be required for each purchaser.
  • Date of Birth – The lawyer requires the dates of birth of all purchasers.
  • Address for Service – The address that will be registered on the deed for future contact. Usually this is the address of the property in question, but may be a different address if the property is being purchased as an investment property.
  • Title – If there is more than one purchaser, the purchasers need to instruct the lawyer whether the title will be taken as joint title or tenant-in-common.
  • Property Insurance – As a condition of the mortgage, the lender will require that property insurance be in place on the closing date.  This requires the purchaser’s insurance agent to send to the lawyer a certificate of insurance or binder letter showing that the insurance is in place and that the lender’s interest is noted on the property.
  • Closing Funds – On or before the date of closing, the purchaser will need to provide the lawyer with sufficient funds to complete the purchase by certified cheque, bank draft or money order.  These funds include the balance owing to the vendor as well as land transfer tax and any other required adjustments such as property taxes or fuel oil.  The lawyer will contact the purchaser prior to closing to provide the exact amount required.

MORE Residential Real Estate FAQs

Here are links to some of the most common questions we receive:

Still have questions?  Please contact a member of ou residential real esate team.  We’d be pleased to help.