Real Estate Law & Purchasing Property

Purchasing Property?

Congratulations, your offer to purchase a new home has been accepted! Now what?

One of the next steps that you will need to take is to retain a lawyer. Prior to lifting conditions (i.e. financing, property inspection, etc.) and making the contract of purchase and sale unconditional, or binding, the role of the lawyer in a purchase transaction may include the following:

  • Reviewing the contract of purchase and sale;
  • Reviewing the title of the property and any charges registered against title (i.e. easements, right of ways, covenants, etc.); and
  • Reviewing disclosure statements and strata documents.

If the foregoing review is not favourable, the buyer may decide not to lift conditions and thus not purchase the property. If the buyer does decide to lift conditions, in the weeks leading up to the completion date, the lawyer will receive a copy of the unconditional contract of purchase and sale from the Realtor’s office and, if applicable, the mortgage instructions from the lender.

Once the lawyer receives the contract and the mortgage instructions, the lawyer’s office must liaise with the seller’s lawyer, prepare the transfer/mortgage documents and set an appointment with the client. We find that we typically have all the documents in hand approximately a week or two prior to the completion date, but this can vary depending on the institutions involved and the completion date (for example, the end of the month tends to be busier for real estate, and thus instructions tend to come closer to completion).

At Sitka Law Group, we are typically in contact with our buyers about a week prior to completion to obtain further information and to arrange for an appointment. For the appointment, which is typically one to two days prior to completion, we will request that a bank draft be brought in and we will have the client sign the transfer and mortgage documents.

On the day of completion, the real estate lawyer will receive the funds from the lender and transfer the funds to the seller’s lawyer. Once the funds are transferred, the Realtors are advised that they can release the keys.

If you have any questions about the process or wish to retain Sitka Law Group for your purchase, sale or refinance please do not hesitate to contact us. Sitka Law Group is located in Victoria, B.C., near the border of Saanich and Oak Bay.

Learn more about the common costs incurred when purchasing a home.