Putting You At Ease
A lawyer protects your interests under the contract and assists you in transferring Title to the property. Your lawyer also helps you register a new mortgage, remove any unacceptable encumbrances on the Certificate of Title, advance mortgage funds when appropriate, provide sale proceeds to the seller and ensure the purchaser obtains possession of the house on time.
There are many legal and financial documents that routinely need to be explained or reviewed with you so that you have a better understanding of how the process works and what is happening on your matter.
Reviewing and explaining all of the documents involved is perhaps the most visual role we play with our clients. We have received many referrals simply because we have taken the time to answer questions, properly explain things and put clients at ease.
Covering the Bases
A lawyer also has a responsibility in cases where the buyer has offered the house as security for the loan required to the mortgage company. Essentially, if the buyer fails to repay the mortgage as required, the mortgage company may wish to take the house back. It will not be able to do so if the lawyer has not ensured that its security in the property is properly registered on the Certificate of Title.
A lawyer will conduct searches of the property to determine whether there are any encumbrances registered upon the Certificate of Title. An encumbrance could include a Tax Lien that indicates certain taxes are unpaid and outstanding or a Notice indicating that a work order is affecting the property and must be resolved.
There may also be a Builder’s Lien or an encroachment problem that needs to be addressed. If so, your lawyer will ensure these are dealt with before the mortgage company is told it is safe to provide you with the mortgage money.
A lawyer will also ensure the buyer has complied with all pre-funding requirements set out by the mortgage company. This is done in order to confirm that funding of the mortgage money will not be a problem when it is required. In many cases, a lawyer will have you review and complete a number of financial documents provided by your mortgage company to help facilitate the deal.
Finally, a lawyer prepares the mortgage documentation accurately and in accordance with any written instructions they receive from your mortgage company.
Every now and then a purchaser will realize they need to change important terms of their financing after the process has begun. If this happens, your lawyer will then need to obtain a new set of amended instructions from the mortgage company verifying all changes and have you sign or execute all related financial documents that may be required. Your mortgage will then be prepared to reflect these changes.
If you are intending to construct a house or perform renovations as part of your financing plans, make sure you clearly discuss these arrangements with your lawyer.
Where construction or renovations are involved, the instructions from the mortgage company should specifically indicate what sums of mortgage money are to be released at different stages of the construction or renovation process. If they do not, the instructions will probably have to be amended so the proper mortgage is prepared. Your lawyer will usually coordinate with representatives of the mortgage company to ensure this gets done.