LOOKING FOR A REAL ESTATE LAWYER?
Use a trusted professional to buy and sell a home or commercial property.
Your property purchase or sale is one of the biggest financial transactions of your life.
You want a law firm that will take the care and attention needed to ensure your real estate deal goes as smoothly as possible. We have the knowledge and experience that is necessary for an efficient real estate transaction. When you purchase a home, you don’t want any hidden surprises arising later!
Our staff will provide you with friendly and knowledgeable service and our lawyers will ensure you understand what documents you are signing. We believe it is important to return your calls promptly and we take the time to answer all your questions. Many realtors have us on their recommended list for lawyers and we are approved by all the major Banks and Credit Unions for their mortgage work.
You want qualified people handling one of the most important financial transactions of your life. Our Staff has over 25 years of experience in successfully completing home purchases and sales.
To contact us right away, fill out the below form. For more information on buying, selling, and refinancing see below.
Buying a home:
We will need your names, addresses, occupations and realtor’s contact. We may need to know the strata contact, insurer, and lender/mortgage brokers. Please bring in two pieces of current ID, including one government photo ID. A bank card or health card generally works as a second piece of ID. The BC government now requires all purchasers to provide their SIN number. Please bring this number with you to an appointment or call it in in advance.
If you need a mortgage, there will likely be an additional $100-$150 in costs relating to title insurance and to add the bank to the insurance plan. This is in addition to any mortgage insurance (CMCH etc) the bank may charge you. We will need your home insurers contact information. Some banks may require us to have your employer’s information. Our conveyancers will let you know when the mortgage instructions come in.
Taxes and Adjustments:
If you are a first time home buyer or purchasing a new home, you may be eligible for a property transfer tax (PTT) exemption if under a certain threshold ($475-500,000 has a partial exemption). Otherwise you should budget for a 1% tax on the first $200,000 and 2% tax on the remainder. Foreign buyers may have a 15% levy. New homes may be eligible for a partial GST rebate if the home is under $450,000, otherwise GST applies.
Municipal property taxes are due the first business day in July. If the sellers prepaid any of their taxes, you may have to purchase their tax account. The tax year is from January to December, so if you buy in or after July, you will credit the seller for your portion of the tax year.
If the property is a strata, you may have to pay the next month strata fees or move-in fees from a strata at the time of purchase. We have to order a strata forms, so we need at least a weeks notice otherwise you may be charged rush fees.
Selling a Property:
We will need your address and realtor’s information.
If there is a mortgage or line of credit secured against your property we will need to order a payout statement from the bank. The bank will likely charge a $75 discharge fee and there may be substantial prepayment penalties if you are selling midway through your mortgage term.
Taxes and adjustments:
The sale of your home is generally tax free (GST is generally only if there is a developer, commercial property, or farmer).
If there is a non-resident owner the lawyers will have to hold back 25% of the sale proceeds until the seller gets clearance from the Canada Revenue Agency. Acreage, recreational and investment property may have capital gains but this is due along with taxes. You may want to speak to an accountant.
The buyer and seller will prorate and split the property taxes. Some strata managers charge a moving out fee as well. Any overdue taxes or strata fees will need to be paid.
On closing, we will also have to pay for any overdue taxes or utilities such as water. Where water is billed by usage, we will often hold back money until we confirm the final utility bill.
Buying and Selling
When you buy and sell at the same time, your total legal bills will be slightly lower. Keep in mind the timing, for if your purchase is completing before your sale, you may require bridge financing and this can add extra legal and government registration costs.
We will need instructions from your bank to refinance a property.