Real estate lawyer’s common advice on Agreements of Purchase and Sale

Real estate lawyer review

As a real estate lawyer I am routinely asked to review agreements of purchase and sale (“APS”) .  This is now becoming more and more standard as realtors insert solicitor review clauses in their APS in order to protect themselves and their clients.  I though I would share some common advise that I give out on these reviews.

Deposit

No less than $5,000, I recommend $10,000.  If someone is going to buy a property they will definitely have $5k – $10k on hand and there is no reason why they should put less down.  Gives the vendor additional protection in the event that the deal goes sideways.

Dates

Give everyone time to get things done.  Title search and closing should be given at least 4 weeks.  Can it be done in less?  Yes.  But the reality is that if you rush the office workers that have to put the deal together you increase the risk of a mistake being made.  Mistakes cost time and money.  Lenders are typically large institutions that are not agile and responsive and you have to give everyone the time and space they need to get everything done.

Conditions

Pretty much every deal should have a condition for financing and home inspection, unless some special circumstances exist.  I routinely advise vendors against conditions for warranties and SPIS.  These can lead to future litigation if the dishwasher breaks three days after closing, for example.  Leave them out and rely on the doctrine of caveat emptor – buyer beware.  It’s cleaner and can avoid planting the seed for a future dispute.  If I am reviewing for a buyer I of course won’t say anything – it’s to their benefit to have those conditions included.

If you or your realtor have questions on your agreements of purchase and sale feel free to contact our office for assistance at (613) 233-7000 or send an email to info@delaneys.ca.  You can also visit https://ottawalawyer.com for more information on our services.