10 Things to Know When Buying

1. Inform your realtor

Please let your realtor know that you are using our office and our lawyer so that we can get the contract sent to our office. If you are not using a realtor, this becomes your responsibility. You cannot assume that your mortgage broker or the builder (if you are buying a newly built property) is going to give it to us.

2. Inform your mortgage specialist or broker

On that note, please also let your mortgage specialist/broker know that you are using our office and our lawyer so that we can get mortgage documents in a timely manner. If we do not get your documents, we cannot book you in for a meeting.

3. Provide us with documents

There are certain documents that you are responsible for providing:

  • You must provide two pieces of identification, and at least one must be picture ID. The other one can be something like a credit card. Certain banks have certain restrictions; one of us will give you further details when we contact you.
  • Of course, you will be bringing in money. We will go over the details with you once we get your mortgage documents.
  • If you are buying a house, you must bring in a binder letter or other confirmation of insurance verifying that you have insurance coverage on the house. Your lender must be shown on the document as a “first loss payee” or “first mortgagee”.
  • The lender may require additional things like a void cheque (for the account your mortgage payments are coming out of).

4. Check over your numbers thoroughly

Check over your numbers! Your mortgage specialist or broker should be assisting you with this, but you should have funds for any property tax adjustments, condominium fee adjustments, neighbourhood association fee adjustments, title insurance fees, other lender fees, and an overestimate for your legal fees.

5. Inform us of any leave of absence

If you will be leaving Edmonton or will otherwise not be in town during your transaction period (the 2 to 3 weeks prior to possession), please let us know. We have ways of accommodating this (either by signing earlier than normal or preparing documents for signing elsewhere) but we need time to prepare for the same.

6. Set up your utilities

Please ensure that you have set up all utilities effective the date of possession and that you have called all applicable companies to change your address (banks, credit cards, etc.). Getting your mail forwarded may be your best bet.

7. Know what is to be left behind and what isn't

Make sure that that you are aware of what’s being left behind on the property and what’s being taken away. Anything listed as an accepted chattel, along with any fixtures, will be left behind.

8. Know who takes care of what

We take care of the money and the paperwork. The realtor takes care of the property and the keys.

9. Re-keying and Cleaning

Weirdly enough, there is no contractual obligation for the vendor to provide all the keys to the property, nor does the vendor have to clean the property. Both are courtesies. Our office recommends getting the property re-keyed anyway, as there is no guarantee that you receive all the keys for the home. As for the cleanliness of the property, it shouldn’t be any worse than how it was when you signed the contract, but it doesn’t have to be any better. You can always insert a term to ensure that the property is professionally cleaned.

10. New build condominium purchasers

If you are buying a newly built condominium from a builder, please make sure you notify your lawyer as soon as you have received your possession date letter. A weird quirk in the Condominium Property Act restricts us from using the quicker methods to close a file, and we must get the land title into your name before being able to deliver funds. Because of fluctuating Land Titles turnaround times, we would like to have you in for a meeting at least a week prior to closing. Please contact our office for more information.

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