Moving Costs

Here are some additional costs in real estate transactions.  

Legal Fees (Buyers and Sellers): There is no universal legal fee for legal services provided when you either buy or sell your home. Generally, the fees incurred when you sell your home are lower than when you buy your home, particularly if you require mortgage financing to buy your home. A Real Estate lawyer will provide you with the details. I can put you in contact with lawyers used in the past. Remember that GST must be added to legal fees and real estate commissions.

Disbursements (Buyers and Sellers): Disbursements are amounts you pay to your lawyer over and above his or her fee for legal services. These are expenses that are incurred by your lawyer on your behalf when completing your home purchase or sale. Whether you are buying or selling your home, your lawyer will be required to conduct some searches of your title and the property tax account. If you are purchasing your home, your disbursement costs will be higher than if you are selling because there will be registration costs associated with transferring title to your name and registering your mortgage against title. Your lawyer can give you a more detailed explanation of the disbursements you can expect.

Land Transfer Fee (Buyer): The Land Transfer Fee payable in Alberta is considerably lower than what is payable in other provinces. The Fee is usually payable by the purchaser and is calculated as follows:

$50 plus $1/$5,000 of the value of the home.

eg. Purchase price is $150,000
Transfer Fee: $50 + (($.20 X $150,000) ÷ $1,000) = $80.00

There is also a registration fee for registering your mortgage:

$50 plus $1/$5,000 of the amount of the mortgage
eg. Mortgage amount is $100,000 Registration fee: $50 + ($.20 X $100,000) ÷ $1,000 = $70.00

Title costs are $10 per title search.  If you have a condominium with titled parking cost would be 10 per each title.

Real Property Report (Seller): The Purchase Contract usually requires that the seller provide an up-to-date Real Property Report with a municipal stamp of compliance endorsed. The cost of a new Real Property Report is on average $575, and the municipality will charge a fee to endorse their compliance - for the City of Calgary, this fee is approximately $170. You should check with a surveyor to determine the exact cost of preparing your Real Property Report. If your property does not comply with municipal regulations, you may have to remove or alter the offending structure, or apply for an Encroachment Agreement and/or a Relaxation from the municipality. This can cost as much as $500 plus any additional fee for legal services plus a fee to the City for the Encroachment Agreement (up to $525.00) and/or Relaxation Permit (up to $575.00).  

Condominium Documents (Seller): The seller supplies documents discussed in the Purchase Contract to the buyer.  Management companies differ in what they charge for condominium documents.  You may have some existing documents that your condominium corporation my have delivered to you a the most recent AGM.  There will be other documents that will need to be ordered like current financial statements, board of director minutes for meetings that have occured in the last year and disclosure documents produced by the management companies.  This cost is difficult to determine but can often run from $200 - $500 on condominium properties.

Adjustments (Buyers and Sellers): The Purchase Price will usually be adjusted so that each of the purchaser and the seller pay their respective shares of property taxes, condominium fees, and Homeowner Association fees, if applicable. If the property is a rental property, there will be an adjustment for damage deposits and rent received or payable. Each party should contact the utility, telephone, and natural gas companies to either terminate or set up services. Generally, each of these services will send their final account to the seller to the cut off date, and services used following that date will be billed directly to the purchaser.

Insurance (Buyer): If you are buying your home, you should contact your insurance company to set up adequate insurance in respect of your home and personal contents. The amount of your insurance premium will vary according to the coverage desired, the age and condition of your home, and of course, your insurer's rates. If you are buying a condominium you will need insurance coverage for your contents and any upgrades you or the previous owners have completed to the unit, even though the building itself will be insured by the corporation.

Home Inspection (Buyer): You can obtain a home inspection for a fee of approximately $500. Fees can increase based on size, basement suites, and age of the home.  Your home inspector may not be able to inspect some aspects of the home and you may also need to involve specialty companies like structural engineers or enviormental companies to test for mold, asbestos or rayon gas to ensure you have all the information you need to be satisfied with the home you wish to buy.  There would be additional costs for these services. Click here to see home home inspectors we have used in the past.

Condominium Document Review (Buyer): You can obtain a condominium document review for a fee of approximately $500.  This service reviews the condominium documents supplied by the sellers and gives you a detailed summary.  This will allow you to review the pertinent details so that you can make an informed decision on the purchase of your condominium.

GST (Buyer): For most resale homes and condominiums GST is not payable by the buyer. It is always best to know your position on GST especially when buying acreages or raw land. Details should be written into the offer if there are any questions on who is to pay the GST.