The standard Ontario Real Estate Association Agreement of Purchase and Sale that says the Buyer has until 6:00 pm to close the deal. What this really does is obligate the Buyer by requiring them to close a deal by that time. The agreement however confuses the issue as it also goes on to say that vacant possession will be given to the Buyer upon closing. That means being out by the time the deed is registered in the registry office. Generally, people assume this means the Sellers can remain in place until 6 pm but that is not the case at all.
Sellers are required to deliver VACANT possession when the sale is completed. That means they must be out of their property by the time the transfer of the deed is registered. This is usually early to mid-afternoon but sometimes, we’ve seen it late morning. While many Buyers are accommodating of delayed move outs, in a worst case scenario, a Buyer could actually sue the Seller if they have damages (expenses) as a result of the Seller not having vacated by that time.
In regard to Buyers, keys cannot be released until the deal closes. Given that the registry office is open until 5:00pm and then there is time needed to notify all parties and release keys, it could be any time up until 5:30 before you get your keys. This means you shouldn’t have a mover sitting in a truck idling and costing you money by planning to move any earlier.
If you are selling and buying on the same day, you may wish to consider bridge financing in order to get earlier possession of your new home so you can be moved out of your old home a day or more before. If this is not possible, then Sellers should plan to be out of their home by 9 or 10 am to ensure they can deliver vacant possession to the Buyer upon closing and registration of the deed.
Marg Scheben-Edey is a Broker with RE/MAX four seasons realty limited, Brokerage in beautiful Collingwood, ON. With three decades of experience, Marg is a leader in the local real estate marketplace and is ready to help guide both Buyers and Sellers in achieving their real estate goals. Email Marg