Property Law... "To Do" before Your Closing

Anne McFarlane – November 2015

Purchasing a home is an exciting time, especially if you are a first-time home buyer.  In the midst of the excitement, it can be easy to forget some items on the purchase “to-do” list, many of which must be completed before the date of closing. This can cause frustration and potentially delay the closing of your new home.

Some examples of steps to take before your closing include:

Fire Insurance

If you are mortgaging the purchased property, your mortgage company will require fire insurance on the property. Generally speaking, the amount of the insurance is an amount equal to or greater than (if the value of the property warrants) the amount of the mortgage financing. This can vary, depending on the transaction.  You should discuss this with your insurer and mortgage advisor, and make arrangements for coverage well before the date of closing.


It is important to contact Nova Scotia Power as soon as possible to ensure the account is switched into your name(s) at your new address.  It is often easiest to have the power connected at the same time the seller is disconnecting their account.  If you are on municipal water, you should also have your name(s) put on the account for the day you assume ownership of the property. If you are responsible for you utilities at your current residence (whether you own or rent) you should contact your providers to advise them of the date of your move.

If utilities are not dealt with in advance of the closing date, you run the risk of having the service suspended.

Equipment Leases

Many times, a home will have leased equipment such as a hot water tank, propane tank, etc. The lease agreement is between the company who owns the equipment and the owner of the home.  If you are purchasing a home with leased equipment of any kind, you need to make arrangements to take over the lease.

These are only a few examples, and the steps to take when you are purchasing your home can vary depending on the property.  It is best to speak with your realtor, financial advisor, and lawyer throughout the process of your purchase to ensure a smooth closing.

Please contact a member of our real estate team at MDW Law to assist you with the purchase of your home and answer all your closing transaction questions.

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