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What you need to know about mortgages and refinancing (and what your lender might not tell you)

Home // Real Estate Law // Mortgages

If you are thinking about buying a property or refinancing, it won’t be long before the subject of mortgage rates comes up. This is understandable because just a small difference in rates can have a big financial impact.

Mortgage lawyer in Edmonton law office firm for expert legal help on property mortgages and refinancing

Do you really know what is in the fine print of your mortgage or refinancing agreement? Remove the mystery by taking advantage of the legal guidance offered by top Edmonton real estate lawyer Andrew Geisterfer.

But there is more to your mortgage than the rate – and these additional considerations could be very important. They may even allow you to negotiate a better rate, provided you have the benefit of sound legal advice, delivered by an experienced real estate lawyer, and make the right decisions before you sign on the dotted line. For example, here are some questions that need answers before you choose a lender:

Can I pay my property taxes directly to the city?

Answer: It depends on the lender. It’s preferable to pay your property taxes directly to the city.

Can I make a pre-payment without penalty?

Answer: It depends on the lender, some allow pre-payments, some don’t or apply a penalty for a pre-payment.

How much can I borrow without having to buy mortgage insurance?

Answer: If you borrow more than 75% of the value of your new home, you need to buy mortgage insurance. Some lenders insist on insurance even when the mortgage is less than 75% of the property value.

Should I go with an open or closed mortgage?

Answer: Lenders will typically offer both, but the terms will vary, which means you have to find terms that suit your financial circumstances.

Notice a pattern? Lenders offer different terms, often in language that can be confusing – just one more reason why you want the support and guidance of real estate lawyer Andrew Geisterfer.

Legal Scenario

Leaking basement

"I moved into my new home in early January and at that time there appeared to be no issues with my basement. However, when the usual spring thaw came in April I noticed that my basement was leaking. What should I do?"

What Would Andrew Recommend?

This scenario highlights the importance of having a property inspection done before you sign a deal. A property inspector is trained to see thing you don’t see. For example, in the winter, when everything is frozen, you are not going to see any water accumulation in your basement and you may therefore assume it is dry. A trained and experience home inspector will look for stains on a wall or other indicators that there was a leak during the summer months. It’s even better if you also have the sellers expressly warrant that the property has never been subject to flooding and they are not aware of any flooding issues with the home. That way you have a legal recourse if it turns out that they were not being honest.

Meet Andrew Geisterfer Edmonton Real Estate Lawyer

Andrew Geisterfer

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