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Why You Should Hire a Lawyer to Sell Your House/Condo in Ontario

Selling a house or condo in Ontario can be a complicated process. There are seemingly endless responsibilities to consider such as renovations, costs, checking the mortgage, and more. A real estate lawyer in Toronto can help make sure that you are handling everything properly and can work on your behalf to make sure everything runs smoothly. Here’s what you need to know about selling a house or condo, expenses to consider, and why it’s beneficial to hire a lawyer to sell your house or condo in Toronto.

lawyer to sell house in toronto

Steps to Sell a House/Condo in Ontario

There are many responsibilities to consider as a seller, but if you stay organized and get help where you need, you’ll be able to sell your place without too much difficulty. Here are the most important steps before selling a house or condo in Ontario:

  1. Get pre-approved for financing
  2. Check your mortgage payoff and any penalties
  3. Find out the value of your home before sale
  4. Make any necessary repairs and prepare your property for sale
  5. Estimate how much it will cost to sell (including your own expenses)
  6. Estimate how much it will cost to buy a new home
  7. Calculate your estimated proceeds
  8. Show your house or condo (make sure your home is in perfect selling condition)
  9. Prepare to let people in (don’t be around when prospects visit)

Expenses to Consider When Selling a House or Condo

Real Estate Agent Commissions

Depending on where you live, these commissions can cost anywhere between three and seven percent. You may be able to pay on the lower end if you negotiate with your agent. On a house that sells for $350,000, you will be set back by $14,000 if your real estate commission agreement is four percent. Remember there is HST on commission.

Legal Fees

Be prepared to budget for at least $700-900 or more, depending on how complex your deal is.

Home Staging

If you plan on renovating and staging your home to impress potential buyers, make sure you include this in your budget. The cost of paint, new wallpaper, furniture polish, décor, new curtains, flooring, etc. can rack up the cost quickly. Although renovating your home can rise its value, it’s a good idea to speak with an agent to find out if any investment you make in your home staging is worth the return on investment.

Moving Costs

Consider where you plan to move, and how much you must take with you. You may need to budget a few hundred dollars for moving expenses, especially if you want to rent a van or hire a moving company. If you have willing friends, or your own truck, you will save on these costs.


If you plan to take on a bigger mortgage, make sure you have mortgage protection insurance. You should also update your homeowner’s insurance policy.

Mortgage Discharge

If you are ending your mortgage before it matures, you will need to pay penalties and discharge fees. For a fixed rate mortgage, the penalties can be very high, so call your lender to find out what you need to pay to break it. For a variable rate mortgage, the penalties are equal to three months of mortgage payments plus a discharge fee.

Status Certificate

When selling your condo or hours, the buyer may want to review the status certificate of the property’s corporation. This certificate is the set of documents that explain the legal and financial health of the corporation. Most offers to buy a property include a condition allowing the buyer’s lawyer to review these documents to make sure they meet expectations. There may be a fee upon the seller to request the certificate from the condo or house corporation.

Pre-Listing Home Inspection

A pre-listing home inspection is performed by the seller before they list the property. A seller will typically hire and pay for a professional home inspector to observe the home and provide a written report of the condition of the house. This report will then be made available to potential buyers.

Why Do You Need a Lawyer to Sell a House/Condo?

Selling a property is more complicated than you may think. To complete the sale of a house or condo, the seller needs to assure the buyer that the property is in good condition and equal to the selling value. The seller will need to have a solid understanding of real estate law and procedures to make sure they can answer important questions about the property. Hiring a real estate lawyer can help you do this properly. The lawyer will make sure that all the responsibilities and expectations are handled and met, and that all the documentation is understood and signed. They will also make sure you receive the full amount of money you agreed on with the buyer when they signed the contract. They will make the necessary adjustments for property tax and maintenance fees too. They will guide you through the selling process and make sure your legal rights and financial interests are protected.

How Can We Help?

If you are looking for a reliable, trustworthy, educated, and experienced real estate lawyer, consider Zinati Kay – Real Estate Lawyers. We are a full service residential real estate law firm that provides fixed closing costs to buyers and sellers when they buy, sell, mortgage, or title transfer their property. We have been in business for 20 years and have closed over 18,000 real estate transactions. We have three lawyers to service our clients and were one of the first firms to provide fixed closing costs. We provide professional service and reasonable real estate lawyer fees and have thousands of satisfied clients to prove it. If you need any assistance with selling your home or condo, contact us at (416) 321-8267 for more information about our services.