EFFECTIVE 11:59PM, MARCH 24th, MANDATORY SHUT DOWN OF NON-ESSENTIAL BUSINESSES IN THE PROVINCE OF ONTARIO
What this means for you is that you can ONLY conduct business virtually, as any in-person service is not allowed. Start NOW! DISCONTINUE LIVE SHOWINGS AND LIVE CONSULTATIONS NOW. Don’t wait for midnight tomorrow to take ownership of your own health, the health of the ones you love, and the health of your clients. It’s time to start getting extra creative with how you can continue to service your clients and stay aware of how other services are changing to a virtual environment.
Ontario Lawyers now have the authority to allow signing of closing documents by video. As long as a lawyer can visually identify the client and watch them sign the documents by Facetime, Zoom, Skype, etc, closings can happen remotely. More information on the Law Society of Ontario and what they are doing to assist through COVID-19 can be found HERE.
Gap Coverage for Closings
In the event title cannot be transferred on closing due to delays in the Titles/Land Registry Offices as a result of COVID-19, First Canadian Title Insurance provides coverage for up to 30 days at no extra charge. Lawyers are able to transfer funds and provide possession to Purchasers, even if Title cannot be transferred right away. FCT can also protect against fraud in using remote signings. More information HERE.
TRREB and OMDREB Turn Off the Open House option on MLS
Friday and Sunday, OMDREB and TRREB respectively announced they were cancelling all open houses listed on their boards. TRREB also announced that it was temporarily not enforcing the rule that any active listings must be available for showings, which allows listing agents and sellers to continue marketing and selling their properties, without necessitating in-person, physical showings. We continue to advocate utilizing virtual methods to market, view and sell properties during this time. Review the Corporate Brokerage’s message on how to host virtual open houses HERE.