Canadian Real Property Law Blog Quarterly Review

This is our Quarterly Review, highlighting posts on our Canadian Real Property Law Blog: The Lay of the Land. Follow the links to any of these specific posts, or visit the blog, where you can sign up to get each new post as it is published. As always, your comments and suggestions are most welcome.

Distressing Decision for Landlords
By Scott Smythe on December 30th, 2013

Landlords that exercise the remedy of distress rarely recover sufficient funds to satisfy the arrears of rent owing by the tenant. A recent decision of the BC Supreme Court held that, in such a case, a landlord cannot immediately terminate the lease without first giving the tenant any required written notice of default and allowing ...

Playing Fair (or not) when Determining Fair Market Value
By Michael Nienhuis on December 23rd, 2013

When parties are unable to establish the future value of property in an agreement – for example, options to purchase or lease renewal options – they typically agree that the transaction will be based on the property's fair market value (FMV) at the time, then set out a process for determining FMV should they fail ...

Strata Property Act Amendment Offers Remedy for Deadlocks on Special Levies
By Jordanna Cytrynbaum on December 19th, 2013

On December 12, 2013, amendments to section 173 of B.C.'s Strata Property Act, SBC 1998, c 43, came into force that allow strata corporations with majority support to apply to the BC Supreme Court to require strata owners to pay for certain repairs. Prior to the amendment, strata corporations required a ¾ vote in favour ...

What the heck did the Ontario Court of Appeal mean when it spoke of an "Implied Statutory Duty of Care"?
By Anthony Alexander on December 19th, 2013

The following Canadian Appeals Monitor blog post by Anthony Alexander may be of interest to readers of this blog: The Second Opinion: What the heck did the Ontario Court of Appeal mean when it spoke of an "Implied Statutory Duty of Care"? In the past decade, the staid law of negligence has undergone a number ...

Alert to Developers and Construction Lenders: Significant Increases to Development Charges in the City of Toronto
By Charlene Schafer on December 16th, 2013

Are you a developer who is planning to construct a large-scale project in the City of Toronto or a construction lender providing financing to these developments? If so, you should be aware of significant, phased increases to development charges recently implemented in the City of Toronto pursuant to City of Toronto By-law No. 1347-2013. The ...

For Repudiating a Salon’s Lease, the BCCA Gives the Landlord a Haircut
By Anthony Alexander on December 9th, 2013

The following Canadian Appeals Monitor blog post by Anthony Alexander may be of interest to readers of this blog: The Second Opinion: For Repudiating a Salon's Lease, the BCCA Gives the Landlord a Haircut Interesting issues of contractual repudiation and landlord-tenant law were recently addressed by the British Columbia Court of Appeal in Abraham v. Coblenz Holdings Ltd., 2013 ...

Are You "Friends and Family"?
By Conrad Rego on December 2nd, 2013

It has been said that when you're negotiating to buy something, you're also selling. The negotiated acquisition involves trust and risk for the seller. As a buyer you are selling yourself to the seller as a party that the seller should do business with. Over the years I have encountered many types of styles and strategies from ...

Timber! Potential Pitfalls When Purchasing Private Managed Forest Land in British Columbia
By Craig Shirreff on November 19th, 2013

Prospective purchasers of private managed forest land in British Columbia (land classified as "Class 7 Private Managed Forest Land") should be aware that: future property assessments for the land may be higher than the purchaser is expecting on account of timber previously harvested on the land; and the purchaser may incur exit fees if the ...

Tax Recharge Provisions – The Devilish Details
By Tara Piurko on November 11th, 2013

Landlords and tenants beware! If you are a landlord and you do not pay enough attention to the tax recharge provisions in your leases, you can end up out of pocket tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars on the annual tax recharge balance sheet. As we all know, if you do not have ...

Buildings with Smarts
By Andrea Armborst on November 7th, 2013

Your office building may soon know more about you than your colleague next door. The introduction of "smart grid" technology is enabling workspaces to identify the person at the station as an individual and set the lighting and temperature accordingly. Buildings get smart by hooking up wireless-connected devices to their existing grids. Not only is ...

Dealing with a Flagrant Trespass: How to Protect Your Property Rights in Canada
By Sam Rogers and Awanish Sinha on October 24th, 2013

Property rights are "sacrosanct" in Canada… or at least that is what courts tell us. The practical reality is somewhat different. This was highlighted a recent incident in Calgary where a landlord had her home declared an "embassy" by a tenant who refused to vacate. The situation made headlines across the country. The incident brought ...

Beyond Borders
By Conrad Rego on October 17th, 2013

Real estate marketing has traditionally been regionally focussed. Though the size of the region can differ, buyers were thought to be more likely to approach opportunities which were geographically convenient. What is geographically convenient for an institutional investor differs from what is geographically convenient for a first-time home buyer. While this may still be true, vendors ...

Managing Management Fees
By Scott Smythe on October 2nd, 2013

Landlords hold their management fees dear, and need to ensure they are fully recoverable. Offers to lease routinely provide that the tenant will pay a management fee equal to a fixed percentage (say 5%) of the "Basic Rent" payable by the tenant. Despite this clear contractual arrangement, landlords occasionally (and inadvertently) shortchange themselves when preparing ...