Why It’s Hard to Get a Mortgage in Canada

Here’s How Tightening Regulations Have Made It More Difficult for Canadians to Borrow Money When Buying Real Estate.

Back in the good ol’ days before the world financial crisis of 2008, it was relatively easy for Canadians to get mortgages. Since then, successive governments have imposed increasingly strict rules on borrowing money to buy real estate. With a newly elected Liberal minority government promising to make housing more affordable, we might hope some of those rules will be relaxed—or at least that buyers will benefit from new incentives. For the moment, however, Canadian mortgage regulations remain quite strict. This blog post looks back at the recent history of mortgages in Canada, as well as the current borrowing climate. Continue reading

Subdividing Property to Increase Density Can Raise Issues with Mortgages on Titles

Skinny House

Podcast Episode 121: “Subdivision Nightmare.”

Across Canada, there is an ongoing discussion about the lack of affordable housing. In some areas, developers won’t build rentals because building condos is more lucrative, because there are rent controls, or perhaps a combination of both situations. Some Canadians are completely priced out of the housing market—especially in the Great Toronto Area and the Lower Mainland of British Columbia. Even in Alberta, where I live and work as a real estate lawyer, affordable housing is an issue. One solution is increased urban density. This podcast/blog post is about the legal challenges of subdividing a single lot into two or more skinnier properties. If there is a mortgage on title, watch out!
 

Download the audio file HERE. Download the handout HERE. (control click or right click + save as)
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Save Your Credit Rating from Foreclosure with Negotiation

mortgage default foreclosure

A Strategy for Walking Away from Non-recourse Mortgages in Alberta

Buying a property doesn’t always work out. Sometimes investors and homeowners alike can’t keep up with their mortgages, and they face foreclosure from their lenders. This blog post is about non-recourse mortgages in Alberta and how they sometimes make it possible to avoid foreclosure with careful negotiation—as long as the lender is understanding.

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Creative Real Estate Goes Mainstream

Legal Strategies for Investing in Canadian Real Estate When the Market Is Down.

Finally! The real estate industry is starting to recognize that there is such a thing, indeed, a very worthwhile thing, as Creative Real Estate. I’m a real estate lawyer in Edmonton, Alberta, and for years I’ve been helping clients put together Creative Real Estate deals. I’ve also been teaching Focus Workshops (next event May 4–5, 2019) on Creative Strategies: Rent To Own a.k.a. Lease-Options, Agreements For Sale, Assignments a.k.a. Wholesaling, Fix & Flip, and Joint Ventures. For a long time, these strategies have been the poor cousins in mainstream real estate investing in Canada, at best ignored and at worst demonized by some as scams. As a lawyer, I can assure you that these are perfectly legal investment strategies—if you use them right! Continue reading

Canadian Mortgage Renewal Difficulties and Rising Interest Rates

mortgage application

Real Estate Cycle Blues:
Changing Mortgage Policy in Canada.

Real estate is a cyclical game. The market is strong; the market is weak. It’s a buyer’s market; it’s a seller’s market. Interest rates are abusively high; interest rates are unbelievably low. Inflation is rampant; deflation is around the corner. All of these factors affect what Canadian homeowners and investors pay for their dream home or next rental property both in regard to the price of the real estate and the interest rate on the new mortgage. This post is one of a series that I’m doing on the effect of recent restrictions on mortgage financing in Canada.

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Billions of Dollars Available for Canadian Real Estate Investors!

Registered Funds Are an Alternative Mortgages Goldmine.

This Canadian real estate investing video is an edited recording of a live webinar for participants in Barry McGuire’s Rapid Cash Program. The topic is how to use the funds in a registered investment (e.g., RRSP, RESP, TFSA, etc.) as an alternative source for a mortgage. Whether you want to be a lender or a borrower, there is lots of money out there—if you know how to find and use it! This video provides in-depth discussion from experienced registered fund lenders and borrowers.

For a legal perspective on registered fund mortgages, view this recent blog post.

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Timing in Real Estate: The Key to Avoiding Extra Legal Fees

Purchasing a New Home:
What Could Go Wrong?

Timing! I keep blogging about timing because it is one of the biggest problems for real estate transactions. Issues with timing are hugely stressful; they are the most common reason for an increased legal account. And, no one likes to pay more in legal fees than they thought they were going to have to pay!

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FAQ: Do I Really Need an Alberta Real Estate Lawyer When Buying or Selling My Home?

If You’re Getting a Mortgage or Have an Existing Mortgage, Then You Need a Lawyer to Buy or Sell a Home in Alberta.

The legal requirements surrounding mortgages in Alberta demand a lawyer, but an attorney protects your interests and manages many important details in a real estate transaction. Once you have a Purchase Contract, it’s time to get a lawyer, however it can help to have one much earlier in the process to make sure things go smoothly. Below is a list of all the things that my Edmonton law firm, RMLO Law LLP, takes care of so that our clients can focus on getting ready to change homes. As you’ll see, there’s a lot to do, which is why the process takes time. Buying and selling are bit different, but they both take time. The end of this blog post also has a bunch of frequently asked questions.

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Inheriting Property Isn’t as Simple as it Seems

Will and Testament

Podcast Episode 117: Estates Are Tricky!

Real estate can cause all kinds of problems when a family member passes away. First, it can take a long time before the will is executed and the inheritor is actually in control of the property. Second, the person who inherits the property also inherits the financial responsibility (mortgage, taxes, etc.), which they end up responsible for even before they own the real estate! This Tale is about what happened when someone inherited a piece of property and almost went into foreclosure with it.

Download the audio file HERE.
Download the handout HERE.
(control click or right click + save as)

Continue reading