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What to expect when buying a property

Updated: Jan 21, 2019

You might be required to present a deposit along with your offer. An appropriate deposit will show your good faith to the seller. The seller's agent is bound by law to bring all offers to the seller's attention.  After your offer is accepted and all the conditions are met, the offer becomes binding on both sides. If you walk away from the deal at that point, you may lose your deposit and you may also be sued for damages. Make sure you understand and agree with all of the terms of the offer before signing.

No matter what type of home or property you're buying, plan on some extra expenses. In some provinces, you may have to pay a land transfer tax (Welcome Tax) or on new constructions a sales tax on property.

You may also have to pay:    • Mortgage Broker's fee    • Appraisal fee    • Surveying costs (if the seller couldn't come up with a current survey)    • High-ratio mortgage insurance premium    • Interest adjustment

Mortgages are normally calculated from the first of each month: if your closing date is the same as the beginning of your mortgage, there will be no adjustment. However, if your closing date is July and you move in on June 15, those last 15 days are the interest adjustment period. Your lender will expect you to cover the cost of the interest during that time. 

You'll also have to reimburse the seller for the unused portion of any prepaid property taxes or utility bills. As well, you must also pay any legal fees, and, if applicable, any REALTOR® fees. Be prepared to furnish proof to your lender that you have insured your new house as well. 

Before the property can formally change hands, there are still a few things to do. On or before closing day, your lawyer and the seller's lawyer will arrange to transfer title of the property from the seller to you. The mortgage money will be transferred to your lawyer's trust account, and then to the seller, and your lawyer will bill you all additional expenses such as land transfer taxes or outstanding legal fees.   At this time, be sure to check with your lawyer that everything is as stated in the offer-to-purchase. Once you're satisfied and the keys to the front door are in your hands, there's nothing else to say... except welcome home!



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