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The Typical Residential Real Estate Purchase Process in BC

Buying property in British Columbia can be a complex process. It is always recommended to work with a legal professional. At Ratcliff LLP, our experienced team of real estate lawyers and conveyancers can assist you with the timely completion of your residential real estate purchase while keeping you informed of the process along the way.

Why Legal Representation Matters in Compliance with BC Real Estate Laws

Engaging the services of a legal professional is not just a recommendation—it is a crucial step in ensuring a smooth and compliant property acquisition. British Columbia’s real estate laws are nuanced and ever-evolving, necessitating the expertise of professionals who stay abreast of the latest legal developments

The typical steps in a residential purchase transaction

The typical steps involved in a residential purchase transaction can be overwhelming without the right guidance, especially considering the specific legal landscape in British Columbia. Here’s a brief overview of the process, keeping in mind the laws that buyers, sellers, and investors must navigate:

1. Obtain Legal Representation

Contact our office with the details of your transaction. If you are working with a realtor and/or mortgage broker, you should provide them with our contact information. It is important to complete this step as soon as you have a firm Contract of Purchase and Sale. It will save you money and stress.

2. Provide Details About Yourself

Our office will provide you with our purchaser information package for your completion and return. The information package elicits key details about yourself, any additional purchasers, and the property you are purchasing.

3. Due Diligence

Our office reviews your Contract of Purchase and Sale, Mortgage Commitment (if applicable) and completed information package. We then obtain a copy of the Title Search and Tax Certificate from the Land Title Office. If the property is part of a strata, we obtain information from the strata management company. Once we have compiled all necessary information, we are able to prepare purchase and sale documentation.

4. Sale Documents Sent For Signing

Our office delivers sale documentation to the legal representative for the seller for signature and return.

5. Sign Purchase Agreements with your Lawyer

Our office arranges a meeting with you to sign purchase documentation. Prior to our meeting, we will notify you of the balance of proceeds we require to complete the purchase. The balance can be paid to our office by way of certified cheque, bank draft, or wire transfer.

6. Completion

On the Completion Date, our office registers the transfer of title to the Property in the Land Title Office and pays purchase proceeds to the seller’s legal representative.

7. Possession

We notify you and your realtor that the purchase has completed. Your realtor will then organize the exchange of keys. Once completed, you will be able to take possession of your new home.

8. Final Reporting

A final report for the purchase is prepared by our office and delivered to you.


Navigating the intricacies of a real estate transaction is a collaborative effort, and at Ratcliff LLP, we are committed to providing unparalleled legal support to our clients in strict adherence to BC’s real estate laws. For a seamless residential purchase experience in British Columbia, trust our experienced team to guide you through every step of the process. Contact us today to secure your property with confidence.

Read more about Peter Coady’s practice.

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Key Contacts
Peter Coady | Real Estate Lawyer | Ratcliff LLP