Interest Rates on RRSP Mortgages

Podcast Episode 96:
“RRSP Mortgages.

In Canada, it is possible to use money held in a Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) to fund mortgages. While this strategy can yield a nice steady return on investment, there are rules in place that can make it a bit tricky to get into. One of those rules is that the lender (i.e., the person with the RRSP) must use a third party trustee to administer the mortgage. This Tale is about dealing with a couple of different trustees and their policies on interest rates. RRSP mortgages must legally be “commercially reasonable,” but apparently there is a lot of room for interpretation of what exactly that means…

 

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Need an Alberta real estate lawyer in Edmonton? Contact Barry now!

“Mortgage” image courtesy of NYPhotographic.com used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0.

Due Diligence Fails

Podcast Episode 95:
“A Couple on Due Diligence

I talk a lot about due diligence because it is one of the most important aspects of achieving success with real estate. This is a two-part Tale, showing a couple different examples of problems to look out for when doing one’s due diligence. The first example is about what happened when someone bought a property that was scheduled for renovation, but didn’t look into the plans. The buyer thought everything was taken care of—until things went wrong with the contractor. The second example is about someone who bought a bunch of condo units. The buyer got hit with a special assessment shortly after closing, which was a surprise because there was no deferred reserve study available. In this podcast, I draw important lessons from these examples and make suggestions about how to avoid similar problems.


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For an experienced and reliable Alberta real estate lawyer in Edmonton, contact Barry now!

House/Home Inspection” image by Mark Moz used under CC Attribution 2.0 Generic.

Removing Conditions on Purchase Contract

Podcast Episode 94:
“Removing Conditions—Should I or Shouldn’t I?

Conditions on a real estate purchase contract should only be removed once the due diligence is complete. But what if the conditions are sort of met, but not completely? Should you still remove conditions if the property seems good, the numbers appear to work, and due diligence is more-or-less done? In this Tale, our investor removed conditions even though they only had verbal assurances about rent and utilities, rather than the written tenant information that was supposed to be part of the deal. As you can probably guess, things weren’t what they were supposed to be, but the deal was already done by the time our investor figured out what was really happening! Listen to the audio to get Barry’s take on strategies for dealing with this sort of situation.

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If you’re buying or selling a home in Alberta, you need an experienced lawyer that you can trust. Get in touch with Barry now!

“3D Realty Handshake” image courtesy of Scott Maxwell. Used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2.0.

Property Inspections, Reports, and Permits

Podcast Episode 93:
“Inspection Reports & Multi-family Diligence.”

Under Alberta’s Residential Tenancies Act, an inspection report must be made whenever a tenant moves into, or out of, a rental property.  But what happens if you buy a property and can’t get the in/out report? Similarly, building permits for multi-family dwellings specify their maximum number of units. What happens if you buy a building that has illegal suites? This episode of Tales from the Trenches explains the legal issues of both inspection reports and occupancy permits in Alberta.

 

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Use the form below to contact Barry McGuire, veteran Edmonton real estate lawyer.

“3D Home Inspection Big Check” by http://www.ccpixs.com/ used under CC Attribution 2.0 Generic.

Joint Ventures, RRSP Mortgages, Due Diligence, & More!

Podcast Episode 92:
A Few Quick Tales.”

Here’s some great stories about people buying and selling real estate in Alberta. These five quick Tales from the Trenches are short, but they show a wide range of different issues, problems, and successes.

In a joint venture, it’s always nice when a more experienced investor can help out someone who’s just getting started, which is the subject of the first Tale. The second deals with rules surrounding RRSP mortgages. Did you know that the money needs to be at arm’s length from the person whose RRSP it is? The third Tale is about Alberta Health’s Minimum Housing & Health  Standards. I’d recommend anyone looking to buy real estate in Alberta take a look at these (available HERE), especially if they want to rent out the property. The second last Tale is about seller’s warranties. They can be hard to enforce, and so due diligence with things like fire safety searches is important before committing to buy. Finally, a real estate deal that is too good to be true can have hidden problems. It might still be a good deal, but it’s best to look a gift horse in the mouth by still doing your due diligence.

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If you’re buying or selling real estate in Alberta, get yourself an experienced Edmonton lawyer. Use the contact form below!

House/Home Inspection” image by Mark Moz used under CC Attribution 2.0 Generic.

Giving Keys to a Buyer & Fixed Cash Deals

Podcast Episode 91:
Keys & Cash.”

Here are two quick Tales from the Trenches: 1) tips on keeping a property buyer motivated and 2) contract language to fix the cash portion of a real estate deal.

Our first Tale shows one reason why a real estate deal can close late. Even when investors have good relationships with their buyers, I say hold onto the keys to the property until everything is finalized. That’s a “key” to motivating your buyer to hurry up!

In the second Tale, our investor had a great deal, with the seller agreeing to carry a second mortgage on the property. But when the assumption statement came back less than the first mortgage was supposed to be, our investor got caught paying the difference. You can fix the cash in a second mortgage or vendor take-back financing scenario, but this needs to be written into the contract.

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Barry McGuire is a real estate lawyer in Edmonton, Alberta. Use the form below to get in touch.

House and Keys” image by geralt on Pixabay used under CC0 1.0.

When to Remove Conditions on a Purchase Contract

Podcast Episode 90:
Diligence Pays Off.”

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: when you’re buying a property, never remove conditions on the purchase contract until you’ve done due diligence. A real estate lawyer like me can protect your interests and help you negotiate a better deal, but I can only work with the documents and evidence available. In this Tale, our investor was working on buying a multifamily rental property. Unfortunately, there were many discrepancies with the contents of units as well as with the estoppel certificates (aka rental confirmations forms). Good thing they didn’t remove conditions before they finished their diligence!

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Use the form below to contact Barry McGuire, real estate lawyer, Edmonton, Alberta.

Exercise That Diligence” image by Alan Levine used under CC Attribution 2.0 Generic.

Transferring Property Without a Lawyer

Podcast Episode 89:
Transfer of Land.”

A Transfer of Land is a document that allows the Land Titles office to register a property in the name of a new owner. In rare circumstances, you might be able to get this done without seeing a lawyer. In this Tale, our investor got a Transfer of Land from a highly motivated seller. Luckily, he also knew what other critical things he needed to do and who he needed to talk to in order to make the transaction go smoothly. This strategy doesn’t come up too often, but when it does, you need to know what to do so you can act quickly.

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Looking for a lawyer to help with buying or selling property in Alberta? Contact Barry now!

“Keys” image by Merio used under CC0 1.0 Public Domain.

Tenant Running Illegal Business

Podcast Episode 88:
I Ain’t No Ho!”

As a landlord, you need to be proactive about what is happening with your tenants. Be concerned if you suspect that a renter may be running an illegal business out of your property! This Tale is short and sweet because our investor took action as soon as they found out a tenant was on the wrong side of the law. Do you know what’s going on in your rental properties?

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Need an Alberta real estate lawyer in Edmonton? Contact Barry now!

“Merrymakers in an Inn” painting by Simon de Vos is public domain. Image from Wikimedia.

Mortgage Penalties

Podcast Episode 87:
Fun with Mortgage Payout Math.”

Paying off a mortgage early can result in penalties. However, there are ways of minimizing the financial repercussions. In this Tale, Barry works through some mortgage math that could save you money.

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Buying and/or selling Alberta real estate? Contact Barry now!

“Mortgage” image courtesy of NYPhotographic.com used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0.