BUYERS LAWYER CHECKLIST
WHAT YOU NEED FOR YOUR LAWYER AS A BUYER
Names to Appear on Title. First and last name (middle name optional). If more than one person will be on title your lawyer will need to know if you want to be “joint tenants” (if one of you passes away, the property passes to the surviving owner) or “tenants in common” (if one of you passes away the deceased’s share goes to his or her estate).
Date of Birth of Each Purchaser.
Spousal Status of Each Purchaser (legally married, common law, single/divorced/widowed, separated). If you are legally married or separated you’ll need to provide your spouse’s name.
First Time Home Buyer. Let your lawyer know if any purchaser is a first time home buyer. To qualify you must cannot have owned or had an interest in real estate anywhere in the world.
Your Pre-Closing Mailing Address, Email and Phone Number.
Your Post-Closing Mailing Address, Email and Phone Number.
Contact Details for Your Mortgage Broker/Lender.
Mortgage Instructions. Provide your mortgage broker/lender with your lawyer’s contact details and ensure they send your lawyer mortgage instructions at least 5 business days prior to closing.
Fire Insurance. If you are buying a house (not a condo), ask your insurer to send a binder to your lawyer showing that your mortgage company/lender has been added to the insurance as loss payee.
Utilities. Contact the utility companies to set up your new accounts. Links to the most common ones are here.
Your lawyer will not perform a zoning search unless specifically requested.
Give your lawyer a copy of the survey, if you have one.
Your lawyer will notify the tax department that you are the new owner on closing. There is a small charge, which will appear on your first tax bill. By default taxes in Toronto are payable in 6 instalments (March, April, May for the interim bill and July, August and September for the final bill). Other payment options are available. More information is here.
This is not mandatory but many lawyers will not act on purchases which are not titled insured. More information is here.
Land Transfer Tax
Calculate how much land transfer tax will be payable by using this online calculator.
Funds for closing
Your lawyer will provide you with a statement showing the amount of money you’ll need to bring to your meeting prior to closing. The funds will need to be in the form of a certified cheque or bank draft, payable to the lawyer’s trust account.
A few days prior to closing you will need to meet your lawyer to sign the documents and deliver the funds for closing. At that time you’ll need to provide
2 Pieces of Identification, one of which must be photo ID (Driver’s Licence, Passport, Citizenship Card). Health cards are not acceptable.
Void Cheque for your mortgage company/lender, or a pre-authorized payment form (PAP) which should be stamped at a branch of the bank.
Purchases are usually complete sometime after 2:00 pm on closing day. Your lawyer cannot release the keys until then. Bear this in mind when booking your move.
Consent to Joint Retainer
If your lawyer is acting for more than one person in the transaction, he or she is required to advise you that any information received from you cannot be kept confidential from the other party, and if a conflict of interest arises between you, your lawyer may have to withdraw from acting.
Consent to Act Re Conflict
In most transactions your lawyer will be acting for your lender and title insurer, as well as you. As a result, any information received from you and your lender cannot be kept confidential from the other parties, and if a conflict of interest arises between you, your lawyer may have to withdraw from acting
Thank you to our trusted advisor, Mike Clark at Korman & Company , for this checklist.