Title insurance and a current land survey are two of the best ways to protect yourself from liability. Although some clients — and some real estate agents — believe that you don’t need a survey if you have title insurance, at JP Lin Law Professional Corporation, we believe that both offer vital protection.
What Is Title Insurance?
Title insurance protects you from title-related problems such as forgery, fraud or missing heirs. It’s valid for as long as you or your heirs own the property and is available for residential properties such as:
- Residential rental (up to six units)
Title insurance can be purchased when you buy a new property or for existing property you currently own.
What Is A Land Survey?
A land survey is prepared by an Ontario land surveyor using calculations taken on the ground and compared with the registered title. It includes:
- The size of a parcel of land, showing the full measurements, corners and boundaries;
- The location of all buildings on the property;
- Any improvements such as fences, hedges and pools, relative to the property boundaries;
- Any easements (rights of way) or places where your neighbours, community members or utility companies may have the right to make use of your land, such as a common shortcut through the edge of your property;
- Any encroachments on your property, such as a neighbour’s garage or fence.
A survey also shows whether the deed (your legal ownership/title to the property) describes the property correctly. This is crucial to determine whether the physical features (dimensions and area) of the property match what is actually owned.
A lack of a current survey may cause trouble in the future. For example, you may decide to put in a pool and discover too late that part of it falls on your neighbour’s lot, or you may have to remove an existing structure erected by a previous owner, but which is located on a neighbour’s lot.
Our Markham lawyer will discuss both methods of protection with you. We will also help you if you need a Resale Status Certificate.
For more information, we recommend the following articles by Bob Aaron: