A Guide to the Real Estate Closing Process in Ontario

Navigate the complexities of buying a house in Ontario with our extensive guide. Contact TJD Law for help with the OREA Form 100 and more.

Written By

Todd Ji, real estate lawyer

Todd Ji

Published On

June 16, 2023


Buying a house is not just about browsing through attractive listings, attending open houses, and deciding on your dream home. A substantial amount of legal work also goes into ensuring a smooth property transition from one owner to another. In Ontario, the closing process for buying a house involves a series of steps that ensure the legality and transparency of the transaction. Here’s what to expect from the closing process when buying real estate in Ontario, with an in-depth look at the OREA Form 100.

Understanding the Closing Process

The closing process is the final step in a real estate transaction. It's the point where the title of the property is transferred from the seller to the buyer. It's important to note that in Ontario, the closing process is usually a complex procedure involving a number of steps that are typically handled by legal professionals. Below are the main steps you can expect:

1. Offer Acceptance

Once you find a property that suits your needs, you make an offer to purchase. If the seller accepts your offer, it becomes a legally binding agreement. This is where the OREA Form 100 comes into play, which we will delve into later in the blog.

2. Opening an Escrow Account

An escrow account holds all the important documents and funds related to the transaction. This ensures that both parties meet their obligations before the funds and property change hands.

3. Title Search and Insurance

A title search is performed to ensure that the seller is the true owner of the property and that there are no outstanding liens or encumbrances. Title insurance protects you from any potential discrepancies that may arise from the title search, ensuring you receive a clear title.

4. Home Inspection and Appraisal

Most buyers request a home inspection to reveal any hidden problems with the property. An appraisal may be required by your lender to ensure the property’s value matches the purchase price.

5. Final Walkthrough

Shortly before the closing date, you have the opportunity to walk through the property to ensure it's in the same condition as when you made your offer.

6. Signing of Closing Documents

On the closing day, you'll sign all necessary documents prepared by your lawyer or notary. This includes the mortgage agreement, transfer of title, and property tax forms.

7. Funds Transfer

Your mortgage lender will transfer the funds to the escrow account, and then the money will be transferred to the seller.

8. Closing the Escrow

Once all the conditions are met, the escrow will be closed, the seller will receive the payment, and the keys will be handed over to you!

Digging Deeper: OREA Form 100

OREA Form 100, also known as the Agreement of Purchase and Sale, is the standard form used in Ontario for residential real estate transactions. It's a legally binding document that outlines the terms and conditions agreed upon by the buyer and seller.

This form includes important information such as:

  • Identification of Parties: The buyer(s) and seller(s) involved in the transaction.
  • Property Details: The legal description, location, and any chattels or fixtures included.
  • Purchase Price: The total amount the buyer agrees to pay for the property.
  • Deposit: The upfront payment made by the buyer to secure the agreement.
  • Conditions: Any conditions that must be met before the sale, such as financing or a satisfactory home inspection.
  • Closing Date: The date the property will change hands and the balance of the purchase price is due.

Form 100 is crucial as it clearly outlines the rights and responsibilities of both parties, providing a legal framework for the transaction. Misunderstandings and disputes can be minimized by referring back to this document.

The Benefits of Working with a Real Estate Lawyer

Buying a house is probably one of the most significant investments you will make in your lifetime. It involves numerous legalities that require a deep understanding of real estate law. This is where a real estate lawyer comes in.

Legal Advice

Lawyers provide advice on complex legal matters that can affect your transaction. They interpret the terms and conditions of your agreement and help you understand your rights and obligations.

Document Preparation and Review

They prepare and review legal documents like the purchase agreement, mortgage documents, and transfer of title to ensure accuracy and protect your interests.


Lawyers can assist with negotiations, ensuring that your interests are protected and your decisions are informed and strategic.

Title Search

A thorough title search is crucial, and a lawyer can ensure it's done accurately, identifying any potential issues.

Closing the Sale

The final step of the process, closing, involves various legal procedures. A lawyer ensures these are carried out correctly, making the transition as smooth as possible.

Peace of Mind

Perhaps the most significant benefit is the peace of mind that comes with knowing a professional is protecting your interests and guiding you through one of the biggest purchases of your life.

Contact TJD Law for a Real Estate Lawyer in Ottawa to Help with Your Closing Process

Navigating the intricate maze of real estate transactions can be daunting. But with expert legal assistance, the process can become significantly smoother. At TJD Law, we specialize in real estate law and provide comprehensive guidance and support throughout the closing process.

Our team of experienced real estate lawyers is dedicated to ensuring your home-buying experience in Ottawa is as straightforward and stress-free as possible. From understanding the specifics of OREA Form 100 to meticulously handling the closing process, we are committed to securing your interests every step of the way.

Don't go on this journey alone. Let TJD Law be your trusted companion in your real estate journey. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn how we can make your dream of home ownership a hassle-free reality.