What Does a Real Estate Lawyer Do When Setting Up a Mortgage?

What Does a Real Estate Lawyer Do When Setting Up a Mortgage?

When buying a home in Canada, you need to work with a real estate lawyer. Your lawyer helps you with many tasks, like preparing the offer to purchase and reviewing the terms of any counter-offers. He or she might also collect your deposit. But how much does it actually cost to buy a home? Your lawyer will provide you with an estimate of the costs of completing your real estate transaction.

Once your offer has been accepted, your lawyer will need to make sure the property is free of any liens, mortgages and more, since you don’t want to be left with the previous owner’s problems. They will prepare all legal documents to transfer the ownership of the home to you. They will register you as the owner of the property with the appropriate government offices. Furthermore, your lawyer will make sure you meet all conditions, such as having house insurance in place.

For soon to be homeowners, one of the most important task your real estate lawyer does is to complete the financial transaction for you. To do so, they act as a go-between, working with you, your bank, the seller’s lawyer and more.

First, your lawyer is responsible for setting up the mortgage. They will prepare and review all mortgage documents. They will communicate directly with your lender to coordinate the transfer of mortgage funds and calculate how much money you owe on closing day.

On closing day, your real estate lawyer has many responsibilities related to your mortgage. He or she will collect the balance of your down payment from you. They will also receive the mortgage money from your lender, which can be either a mortgage broker or a bank. They are responsible for holding all of the funds “in trust”, which means “property held by a person who is not the owner but who is a trustee or an agent.” (Law Dictionary)

Once they have all of the funds needed to complete the purchase of your home, they are responsible for transferring them to the seller. You can’t take ownership of your new home until this step is complete, so it’s important to work with a reputable real estate lawyer.

Finally, your lawyer will collect from you the various fees you need to pay to complete the purchase of your home. This could include land transfer taxes, adjustments for prepaid utilities, commissions and fees. He or she will also charge you their fee for completing your real estate transaction.

Once all payments are complete, there’s one last transaction your real estate lawyer will do: giving you your house keys.

The bottom line is that your real estate lawyer is there to watch out for your best interests and make sure the transaction goes as smoothly as possible. If any complications should occur, it’s their job to fight for you. They are your best defence against fraud and scams.

Don’t yet have a real estate lawyer? Visit our lawyer list page to see who we recommend for all of your real estate transactions.