In order to make a Will or to appoint a power of attorney, you have to have mental capacity. You might find yourself asking what is mental incapacity, how can I plan for it, what do I do if someone I know is or I believe he or she might be incapable, etc.? This page posted by the Ministry of the Attorney General answers these questions and more. It also provides a definition of mental incapacity and directs you to other helpful resources on this issue. Mental capacity is a widespread issue when it comes to estate planning, especially for the elderly. If you have concerns about your own or someone else’s mental capacity, contacting a legal professional or the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee would be a good first step.
What is a “Power of Attorney”? Who should I appoint my attorney? What do I need to do or know to make these decisions?The Ministry of the Attorney General’s webpage on Powers of Attorney answers all of these questions and more. This page is very informative, describing the differences between the two types of powers of attorney, the requirements for creating a power of attorney, considerations on who to appoint, etc. If you want to inform yourself on powers of attorney, this webpage is a great place to begin. It will help you focus your thinking to the relevant issues and may bring to mind important questions or considerations to raise with your lawyer.
When purchasing a home in Ontario, keep in mind that you will have to pay Land Transfer Tax in addition to the purchase price. The Ministry of Finance has posted an informational page on Land Transfer Tax that explains what Land Transfer Tax is, who must pay it and how it is calculated. If you are purchasing a home for the first time, you may be eligible for a full or partial refund of land transfer tax. It is a good idea to let your lawyer know if you are purchasing your first home so they can determine if you’re eligible for the refund.
The Tarion webpage also provides a guide to your Tarion New Home Warranty. It provides information on your Tarion warranty as well as procedures under the Ontario New Home Warranty Plan. It would be beneficial to browse this page if you have any questions or concerns regarding your New Home Warranty either before purchasing or after closing.
Are you buying a newly built home? If you are, the Tarion webpage is a great resource to check out. There are a number of links you can browse through that may help to answer any questions that you have either before the purchase or after it is completed.
Something to consider when selling your house is whether you should complete a Seller Property Information Statement. This article from Real Estate Wealth entitled “Seller Property Information Statements: What you need to know” gives information on what a Seller Property Information Statement is, whether you are obligated to fill it out, and other considerations that you may find informative. Your real estate agent should be able to answer most of your questions about this document but a lawyer can also help you determine the legal implications of completing it or not completing it.
Buying your first home or selling your current home, you may be hearing a lot about “closing day”. But what exactly can you expect to happen on the day of closing? Here is another article from the Toronto Star (“17 things to know about closing your house deal” by Mark Weiseleder) that is outdated (August 19, 2011), but the contained information remains relevant to present day. The article provides a checklist of actions you should take or issues to follow up with your lawyer if you are either buying or selling a house. If you are unsure of anything or have questions regarding the process, you shouldn’t hesitate to contact your lawyer’s office. Remember – they are there to help you and this is a process they are very familiar with!
Are you a first-time home buyer looking to obtain a mortgage? Or are you planning on refinancing your home in the near future? Here is an article posted by CBC News (“Stress tests, foreign buyers and higher rates likely to impact housing market”) that provides the most recent information on where the real estate market is headed for 2018.