Calgary Real Estate Lawyer Explains Necessary Steps to Closing Transactions

CALGARY REAL ESTATE LAWYER Explains Necessary Steps to Closing Transactions

You need a lawyer to buy or sell a home in Alberta. Charles Osuji, Managing Partner and CEO of Calgary’s Osuji & Smith Lawyers, and one of the top 25 most influential lawyers in Canada, explains the necessary steps to closing real estate transactions.

“The legalities surrounding mortgages in Alberta demand a real estate lawyer,” says Osuji. “For Alberta home buyers and sellers, a lawyer ensures a smooth transaction every step of the way, informs you of your rights and obligations, and protects your interests.”

A real estate lawyer provides you with 3 key benefits when selling or buying a home:

  1. Prepares and reviews all documents to ensure everything is in order
  2. Ensures the sale closes according to the timeline detailed in the contract
  3. Gives you peace of mind throughout the real estate transaction process

Calgary Real Estate Lawyers Explains Necessary Steps to Closing

The Process of BUYING OR SELLING A HOME IN ALBERTA

When is it time to involve a real estate lawyer? As soon as you are serious about buying or selling a home in Alberta. Typically, the lawyer doesn’t get actively involved until all conditions on the contract have been met, however, talking with your lawyer early in the process helps ensure the transaction is smooth and seamless.

There are a few aspects of home ownership and real estate transactions that people are sometimes unaware of:

  • Home Insurance – If you have a mortgage, your lender requires proof of insurance. Your real estate lawyer will help you determine the specific coverage you need.
  • Property Taxes – All homeowners are required to pay property taxes. Your lawyer will advise you on the options available to you regarding how to pay, when to pay, and how much to pay.
  • Identification Requirements – Most real estate lawyers require you to present two pieces of government-issued identification upon signing documents.
  • Bank Draft – At the time of signing closing documents, the buyer’s lawyer will require a bank draft for the amount of the purchase price plus legal fees and tax or other adjustments minus the amount of the mortgage or financing.

These are important details in a real estate transaction, but there’s so much more involved. The role of a real estate lawyer in any Alberta real estate transaction is essential.

THE ROLE OF ALBERTA REAL ESTATE LAWYERS IN SELLING A HOME

When selling a home in Alberta, a real estate lawyer is almost always required by the buyer’s lawyer, especially if there is an existing mortgage on your home. This is to ensure that the money you receive from the sale of your home will actually go to pay out the existing mortgage. Without a lawyer, the buyer has no guarantee that the mortgage will be paid out.

The necessary steps that involve a lawyer for closing the sale of your home are as follows:

  1. The real estate agent sends your lawyer a copy of the purchase contract.
  2. Your lawyer reviews all paperwork and requests any additional information or actions required from you.
  3. If you have an existing mortgage on your home, the lawyer contacts your mortgage lender for the balance owing on the date of your completed sale.
  4. The lawyer prepares any necessary documents, including amendments to the original purchase contract. When you’re satisfied with the terms and conditions, you sign the documents.
  5. The lawyer sends the documents to the buyer’s lawyer. When the buyer signs the documents, payment is made to your lawyer, who then coordinates possession of the home with the real estate agent and makes all necessary payments on your behalf, including paying you the proceeds of the sale.

After the sale is complete, your lawyer will present you with a full report, including statements detailing receipt and disbursement of all the money that was exchanged during the transaction.

THE ROLE OF ALBERTA REAL ESTATE LAWYERS IN BUYING A HOME

When buying a home in Alberta, lenders require the involvement of a lawyer. Even if you don’t need a mortgage, a real estate lawyer is a good idea because they protect your interests every step of the way. The lawyer coordinates with all parties involved in the transaction, so you can enjoy peace of mind, knowing the details are being handled effectively, efficiently, and legally.

The necessary steps that involve a lawyer for purchasing your new home are as follows:

  1. The real estate agent sends your lawyer a copy of the purchase contract.
  2. Your lawyer reviews all paperwork and does due diligence to ensure everything is in order. This may include home inspection, checking for claims against the property, getting property tax details, providing you information about home insurance requirements, reviewing land titles, etc.
  3. Your lawyer prepares and/or reviews all additional paperwork, including the mortgage details, insurance requirements, and any additional terms and conditions.
  4. You sign the documents, and your lawyer sends them to the seller’s lawyer. At the time of signing, you typically bring a bank draft for the balance of funds required to close the transaction.
  5. Your lawyer arranges the land title transfer, coordinates the transfer of funds to all necessary parties, and handles the possession of the home by having the seller’s lawyer authorize the release of keys.

At this point, you officially take possession of your new home.

THE ROLE OF ALBERTA REAL ESTATE LAWYERS IN REFINANCING A HOME

There are several reasons an Alberta homeowner may want to refinance their home. Common motivators include:

  • Taking advantage of lower mortgage rates;
  • Debt consolidation;
  • Removing someone from the original mortgage or title;
  • Freeing up equity for other purposes; and
  • Many others.

A real estate lawyer is a valuable part of the refinancing process because of their vast experience, which can save you money. When refinancing your home, a real estate lawyer will review all documentation related to your home and financing, clearly explain your options, and gather and prepare the necessary information and documentation for your mortgage application.

Additional Real Estate Lawyer Services

A real estate lawyer handles the legal parts of a real estate transaction and takes care of the coordination between the real estate agents, mortgage specialists, and other involved lawyers. This simplifies the process for both sellers and buyers, and gives all parties peace of mind.

Besides the basic services of preparing and reviewing documents, negotiating terms and conditions, and handling the transfer of title and funds, a real estate lawyer provides additional services that may be offered at an additional cost. These include:

  • Resolving non-compliant Real Property Reports with the municipality
  • Resolving landlord and tenant disputes
  • Managing multiple mortgages for multiple properties

CALGARY REAL ESTATE LAWYERS: Osuji & Smith

Selling, buying, or refinancing a home is quite an involved process. You want to be sure it’s done right and as smoothly and efficiently as possible. Enjoy peace of mind at every stage of the process by enlisting an award-winning real estate lawyer like Charles Osuji.

Osuji & Smith Real Estate Lawyers provide real estate law services across Alberta, including Calgary, Airdrie, Chestermere, Red Deer, Lethbridge, Brooks, and Edmonton. This highly skilled team of experienced lawyers will ensure a seamless real estate transaction, whether you are selling, buying, or refinancing a home in Alberta. Contact Charles Osuji and his team at 403-283-8018, or visit their website.

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