Why on earth would you need a real estate lawyer just to refinance a mortgage?
Plenty of reasons. Mortgage loans involve volumes of paperwork. Working your way through it can get pretty intense. Instead of just ignoring the nuances of your mortgage refinance, hire a real estate lawyer to do the legwork. You’ll thank yourself.
See six reasons why.
Six Reasons to Get Legal Advice When Refinancing
A real estate lawyer looks at all the angles. They go through your mortgage refinance documents painstakingly. Questions your lawyer might ask include:
- Do penalties apply if you pay off the mortgage, or part of it, before the mortgage term is over?
- Can you rent out your property? With or without your lender’s permission? Renting secondary suites.
- What happens if you fail to make mortgage payments? Can you take a mortgage payment holiday and for how long? Will the lender sell the property if you default or seize it and foreclose? Can the lender sue you? Power of sale vs foreclosure.
- How does the home equity line of credit (HELOC) work? Is it a demand loan or second mortgage charge against your property?
- Is the interest rate fixed or variable? Will you owe more at the end of the year if interest rates go up but your monthly mortgage payments are fixed? In other words, if you haven’t covered the full costs of the principal by year’s end?
- Does the mortgage cover just your home or will it pay off your credit card or other consumer debts as well? Is your spouse or partner on the property title? Who owns common law property in Ontario.
How to use a HELOC – pros and cons.
What Your Real Estate Lawyer Will Do
Your lawyer has certain responsibilities for finalizing a mortgage refinance. They review the new loan, and its terms and conditions. That includes the details of actions your lender can take if you intentionally or accidentally default on your mortgage, such as not paying the mortgage, property taxes, or common element fees when they are due. Your lawyer has your back if your mortgage refinance agreement includes any unusual fees or charges.
Registering the New Mortgage
Axess Law can register a new mortgage electronically and prepare mortgage directions for where the money will go. Your existing lender will be paid off from the new mortgage funds. When to refinance vs renew.
Getting the Property Deed
Your real estate lawyer searches title to your property for financial liens (debts you owe before you can get clear title). If desired, your lawyer can add others, such as a spouse, partner, or family member, to the title. A statutory declaration that the property title is clear and free is part of the final documents you receive. Gifts of property exempt from property taxes.
Preventing Conflicts of Interest
Many lenders will pay your legal fees to get your business. If a real estate lawyer is acting for both you and your lender, they will prepare an acknowledgement of conflict of interest for you to sign. Now that was easier than you thought. Is your realtor in a conflict of interest?
Complain about a realtor.
Renewing Your Mortgage With Your Current Lender
Content with your current mortgage terms and conditions? Provided your credit is good and the mortgage payments are up to date, most Ontario banks, credit unions, and trust companies will offer to renew at a competitive interest rate. No shopping around for a mortgage refinance. Just sign where indicated. How lenders qualify you for a mortgage renewal.
Getting the Best Mortgage Rate You Can
Can your credit score withstand the scrutiny of shopping around for better interest rates? Lenders query your credit score when you look for better mortgage refinance rates. That could bring unwelcome attention to your finances. The best strategy, according to The Motley Fool investment advisors, is to ask several lenders at once. That will show up on your credit report as a single enquiry, not multiple requests. How your credit score affects mortgage applications.
Calculate your mortgage payments if you refinance.
Affordable Real Estate Lawyers, Anywhere You Are
Access lawyers for less in Greater Toronto Area, Ottawa, or anywhere in Ontario when you buy, sell, or transfer property. Axess Law’s flat fee real estate lawyers are affordable, and our rates are all inclusive (excluding taxes, disbursements, and third-party charges). Axess Law offers you only the legal services you absolutely need. Your final invoice includes no surprises or hidden charges. Your itemized statement of adjustments is explained when we deliver it, and we answer any questions you have about it.
Find a virtual real estate lawyer near you.
Sign Refinancing Documents for Your Mortgage
Axess Law Ontario real estate lawyers sign bank documents to make your mortgage refinancing deal legal. Online video calls are available anywhere in Ontario, at times convenient for you, 7 days a week. Book an appointment by dialing toll-free to 1-877-552-9377 or 647-479-0118 in Toronto, or using our online booking form. Our experienced Ontario lawyers can meet you in person at any of our conveniently located Greater Toronto Area or Ottawa offices.
Click here to learn more about Axess Law’s real estate law services.