It was bad news for the buyers of UrbanCorp’s Kingsclub condos as the developer turn about on their building plans. North York condo rentals will replace these condos for sale in North York in King West. It was a move that staggered 181 buyers. Long back in 2011, many bought these pre-construction condos of King West and have been waiting eagerly that the project stalled out. The plot was just entering the early stages of foundation work. Purchasers were expecting an update from the builder about delays but found the project been cancelled.
What may be the reason for cancellation? Seemingly, the builder did not get funds for the original project but there is no formal declaration on UrbanCorp’s website. Just like the silent cancelling of The Selby at Bloor and Sherbourne a few days before Christmas, builders of condos for sale in North York are trying to step down from projects quietly with fewer media and legal fuss. But the Selby was running in its first month of sales and there could not be many units sold out. So the effect of that declaration was less on consumers. The UrbanCorp case is much different because they were almost sitting on purchaser’s down-payments for a long time and tying their hands from buying anything else. It was not done on purpose of course but the damage to the purchasers is real.
Repaying won’t be enough to conciliate most buyers
Buyers will get their funds back
with interest but that interest would be almost minimal. The contracts of the
developers refer to the Bank of Canada’s overnight rate as their highest need.
Thanks to the latest announcement of BOC for breaking down the rate to 0.75
percent. Hence, the translation of a 20000 dollars investment for three years back
is just 20,453 dollars. No one knows about the higher interest rate given in
UrbanCorp’s contracts. But in terms of potential earnings, chances are that the
interest does not come close to the real losses of buyers.
Think on how much these investments had grown if the buyers would have purchased condos for sale in North York back in 2011. And besides the lost value acknowledgement, purchasers are now experiencing a much more uncooperative North York condo market than they were 3 years back. Hence, the purchasers have to pay more now to buy a similar unit in the other building then had the project not been taken back or had they moved to buy re-sale instead at the time.
Your legal ground is trembling at best
This unfortunate event underlines
the problem involved in purchasing on spec and why pre-construction is not a
good investment always. If you are an unlucky purchaser of the Kingsclub condos
or have bought a different pre-construction North York condo for sale and are
worried that this can happen to you as well. What are the legal consequences?
The lawyer Mark Youngman says about the matter that the builder is under no
commitment to repay buyers beyond the amount mentioned in the purchase
agreement that surely includes a section about potential project cancellation
if sales are less, offering it adheres to Ontario condominium law. Even though
the interest rate given on the contracts is less than that stated in Ontario
condo law, then the purchasers need to fight for that additional amount.
Far too often, going to an estate planning seminar is like watching paint dry because the information is too technical and tax driven. Earlier this year, I was part of an estate planning session that focused on more unconventional estate planning advice filled with lots of common sense. Here are some great tips I got from the speaker Doris Bonora, partner of Reynolds Mirth Richards & Farmer
1. Clarity and communication should be the goal of estate planning. Far to often we get caught up in the legal and tax implications of estate planning. The whole purpose of an estate plan is to communicate detailed instructions so that your affairs are handled to your satisfaction in case of death or illness.
2. Planning is the least expensive option. When it comes to drafting a will or other estate documents, often people get turned off by the fee that lawyers charge for their services. In my experience, paying a lawyer to draft a will, an Enduring Power of Attorney and a Personal Directives is the least expensive option. I’ve seen Lawyers make a lot more money when people do not have a plan and they have to try to settle disputes that arise from poorly planned estates.
3. With a Personal Directives, appoint people who are health care advocates. A Personal Directives appoints someone to make health decisions if you are unable to make those decisions. Ideally, you want someone that is going to be your advocate and make sure you are getting good care and the right advice. You want someone that will seek more than one opinion even if it requires more effort. That’s who I would want for me.
4. Have a system in the will to deal with personal assets. When it comes to financial assets, it is very common that assets are divided equally. When it comes to personal assets, dividing the grandfather clock or the diamond ring three ways typically does not work. According to Bonora, “it is usually the dividing the personal assets that creates the most trouble with families. As a result, it is important that the will provides a set of rules or a system to deal with dispersing personal assets. In this system it is also important to outline a dispute resolution process. Something as simple as in case of a dispute put your names in a hat and draw names. Making lists of personal assets can be helpful but it is not a system. It is very likely something will be overlooked.”
5. Don’t be afraid to use a trust to manage your estate. When dealing with younger beneficiaries or families of a second marriage, using a trust is very beneficial. Studies show that when people inherit money, 70% of the time, the inheritance is gone within three years. Trusts place stipulations on how inheritances can be used and when it can be used. According to Bonora, “although some people feel it is not appropriate to control money from the grave, it may be one of the best things you can do for the beneficiaries, especially if they are young.”
6. Don’t put funeral directions as part of the will. Often people think that funeral directions should be part of a will but Bonora feels that far too often the will is read after the funeral happens. Part of this is our societal belief that a will should not be read until after a funeral. Since it is important to provide funeral guidance, do it in a separate document and make sure your loved ones know where it is.