Do You Need a Lawyer to Close a Real Estate Transaction and Why?
In short, yes you require a Lawyer. Legal requirements surrounding Mortgages in Alberta demand a Lawyer. Even if your transaction does not involve a Mortgage, a Lawyer protects your interests and safeguards the process. This includes, analyzing paperwork from your Realtor, due diligence and searches on your behalf, such as legal title, taxes and other searches which may be required.
If you are selling a property, a Lawyer will prepare all necessary paperwork and order a Payout Statement from your Lender. Upon the transaction closing, prior to releasing net sale proceeds to you, the Lawyer will release the keys, payout your existing Mortgage, any Realtor commission, as well as outstanding property taxes, condominium fees or HOA fees, as applicable. If a Mortgage has been paid out, the Lawyer will take very important steps with your Lender and Land Titles Office to have your Mortgage discharged from Title prior to finalization of the transaction.
If you are purchasing a property with a Mortgage, a Lawyer will receive the Mortgage Instructions from your Lender. Based on the Mortgage Instructions, they will prepare the Mortgage and other related paperwork prior to reviewing the documents and all pertinent information with you. The documents from the Seller’s Lawyer will be received and thoroughly reviewed. On the possession date, Mortgage funds will be received by your Lawyer. All closing funds will be paid to the Seller’s Lawyer following which possession will be granted to you. The appropriate documents will be sent to The Land Titles Office for registration. In order to finalize the process, your Lawyer will ensure that you have clear Title in your name.
We highly recommend that you research Lawyers in your area who specialize in Real Estate Law and connect with their office prior to entering into a Real Estate Contract.