Buying and selling real estate for profit? Axess Law closes real estate transactions on time and for less than you would normally pay. We’re fast, affordable and get deals done when you need cheap lawyers in Toronto area or Ottawa.
Time is of the essence in today’s real estate markets. But don’t be tempted to skip over the details and go straight for the sale. Your Axess Law real estate lawyer has you covered.
We go over your agreement of purchase and sale to ensure offers you receive are fair. Our licensed real estate lawyers point out oversights and find problems that could delay or even cause a deal to fail.
Real Estate Traps to Avoid
- Accepting the highest or any offer can compromise your property sale. Multiple bidding wars in Toronto can inspire anxious buyers to offer more than their bank or credit union will finance. Short closing dates can force buyers with shaky credit scores to back away, knowing financing is unlikely.
- Offers way over appraised value could leave you waiting weeks to close a deal that may never happen. Find committed buyers who can afford to pay for hot properties by insisting on cash for the difference between appraised value and the highest, best offer.
- Unrealistic expectations about how much your home is worth can cause grief and disappointment. You may have to reduce the price to fit what the market will bear. Get an approximate idea of your home’s value. A competent realtor can give you an estimate based on comparable properties in your region.
- Offers and counter offers can be withdrawn if you miss the time limit or before you formally provide a signed, witnessed acceptance. Even though offers may seem irrevocable, no deposit and no acceptance mean no legal contract exists.
- Acts of God or other mishaps that make it impossible to close a sale, through no fault of yours or the buyer’s, can terminate an agreement of purchase and sale. Wildfires, floods, sinkholes or extreme wind can make an investment property uninhabitable and worth far less than the buyer offered. Short of an insurance payout to repair the damage, your buyer can walk without forfeiting their deposit.
Writing Agreements of Purchase and Sale
Your APS is critical to quick property flips. Accepting a written offer on time makes it binding on you and the buyer. Once signed and witnessed, offers can only be cancelled by both you and the buyer agreeing to withdraw.
What to Put in the APS
Pre-acceptance, you can change any standard agreement of purchase and sale in Ontario by writing in or amending and initialling terms or conditions you would like to see:
- the deposit amount
- how long the offer is open (hours to days)
- a home inspection clause in the purchase agreement
- mortgage financing
- assuming a mortgage
- or accepting a property ‘as is, where is’.
List Fixtures and Chattels
Changed your mind? After the fact, itemize anything you plan to remove by making an amendment to the agreement of purchase and sale.
Generally, fixtures like cabinets, water heaters or lights stay with the property, unless specifically excluded in the APS. State if you will include chattels or moveable objects like a garden shed, appliances, blinds or furniture or if you will take them.
Exclude treasures you want to keep, like antique doors or an interior stained glass window, by making that clear in the APS or amendment.
Include Dates and Times
Specify the closing time (usually 15 to 30 days) and vacant possession date that the buyer becomes the legal owner.
Axess Law can advise you on any other real estate clauses to include in a purchase and sale agreement for Ontario properties. Your property is unique. We review every detail to ensure you are properly covered for potential legal issues.
Fixing Property Defects
A home inspection clause can turn up patent or visible defects the buyer hopes to have repaired or more serious latent (hidden from view) defects that can lead to requests to withdraw a sale or reduce the price.
Unless the buyer objects before the sale closes, their options are limited unless you deliberately withheld information about a latent defect. For example, failing to be honest on the seller property information sheet (SPIS) can be grounds for a court challenge.
Axess Law advises you if a buyer’s lawyer indicates the deal could be affected.
Keeping the Deposit
Buyers are formally bound once you accept their offer or counter offer. You can keep the deposit if the buyer backs out and even sue for damages. The cost of putting off a move or getting bridge financing to carry mortgages when you’ve bought another property to flip can all be part of a legal claim.
Typically though, most sellers return the deposit to prevent legal entanglements. But if you’re determined to press your case, you can ask the court to enforce specific performance of your legally valid purchase contract.
That could result in a settlement for the price the buyer offered or the gap between the offer and what a new buyer paid. And, you could claim holding costs to put an investment property back up for sale and legal expenses.
Why You Need a Lawyer
Only a lawyer can close a real estate transaction in Ontario. While you can sell your own home, a lawyer’s services are necessary to complete the deal. Partnering with Axess Law in your flipping business is a wise decision. We have a cheap real estate lawyer wherever you need one.
Your Axess Law real estate lawyer ensures properties are free of construction or financial liens that could stop sales. Our lawyers in Toronto area and Ottawa communicate with lenders to discharge mortgages or finalize refinancing. They work with buyer’s lawyers to:
- confirm property surveys are correct
- amend the APS when conditions are satisfied
- confirm the title and utilities are transferred
- pay outstanding property taxes
- answer zoning or easement queries
- and decide how or if to remedy property defects or repairs the buyer raises.
On possession day, we ensure the buyer’s lawyer has the keys to your property and it changes hands on time.
And, if you refinance your home to buy or sell investment properties, Axess Law can liaise with your bank or credit union to complete the legal paperwork.
Flat Fee Legal Services for Every Budget
Axess Law has licensed real estate lawyers near you in Toronto area and Ottawa who can close property sales or refinance mortgages. You may be surprised at Axess Law prices and how affordable our legal services really are.
How much does it cost to transfer a property title? Simple transfers to next-of-kin start at $649. You pay $799.99 and up to sell your home or $999.99 and up to buy property you like.
Remote or In Person Appointments Available
Axess Law virtual lawyers make remote video conference calls or can meet in person at any Toronto area or Ottawa law office near you. We have open law office locations with onsite parking and easy transit access.
You can arrange appointments to fit your schedule, 7 days a week, day or evening. Book easily online or dial our 1-647-479-0118 lawyer line for appointments. Toll free calls accepted at 1-877-402-4207.