ILN: BUYING AND SELLING REAL ESTATE - AN INTERNATIONAL GUIDE

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[BUYING AND SELLING REAL ESTATE IN CANADA - ONTARIO]

also be easily amended by adding a schedule with further clauses that are tailored to the particular transaction. The type of property being purchased also needs consideration such as freehold, leasehold or condominium. Great care must be undertaken when drafting the purchase agreement to accommodate local requirements in addition to the needs of the party the lawyer is representing. Commercial Many similar principles apply to a commercial real estate transaction as to a residential real estate transaction, although the dollar figures are usually larger. Additional considerations are required by the nature of the property, such as tenants and their leases, service contracts and employment contracts of salaried workers, future revenues from the property and future development plans for the property. The commercial buyer normally requests in the purchase agreement that pertinent due diligence materials be provided by the seller such as realty tax records and appeals, environmental reports, surveys, building engineering reports, copies of all tenant files including leases, maintenance contracts, development files, etc. so that it can evaluate the property, its financial feasibility and intended use. The commercial buyer may need to evaluate cost sharing arrangements, easements, zoning, and environmental issues. The due diligence conditions and other conditions, if any, and timing of same are negotiated with the seller and must be detailed in the purchase agreement. The buyer's lender may also have due diligence requirements, such as an appraisal and satisfactory environment reports. The buyer should ensure these are met prior to any waiver of conditions. Closing documents that will be required and if the seller or buyer are responsible for drafting same are also listed in the purchase agreement.

Since commercial properties come in a variety of forms such as vacant land, commercial, retail, industrial, mineral, and agricultural property, tailoring the transaction to satisfy the buyer and seller, based on the type of business that was being conducted on the property or the buyer's intended use of the property, is an integral part of the purchase agreement. II. BROKERS AND AGENTS Real estate agents and real estate brokers are governed by the Real Estate and Business Brokers Act , 2002 (Ontario) and its regulations. In Ontario, a real estate agent will have obtained the minimum mandated education, have passed a set of tests required by OREA, and be registered with RECO. To become a broker, in addition to the requirements to become an agent, an individual will have completed the Real Estate Broker Program and have been registered as a salesperson for at least 24 months. It is not mandatory to use a real estate agent or broker on a transaction. Listing a property in Ontario is making it known to potential buyers that the seller is looking for offers. The listing agreement is a contract between a seller and a real estate agent or brokerage. The agreement will specify a time period in which the brokerage will have exclusive access to list the property - usually 90 days. The price, while being stated on the agreement, will only be an estimate. The commission, often a percentage of the sale price to be given to the brokerage for its services, is also listed in the agreement and is often paid by the seller. If the buyer and seller have separate agents, the commission is typically split between the agents as may be set out in the agreement of purchase and sale or the listing agreement. Additionally, if the brokerage intends on collecting a flat fee or a finder's fee, this must be stated in the listing agreement. A holdover clause is a clause that sometimes allows a brokerage to collect its

ILN Real Estate Group – Buying and Selling Real Estate Series

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