Condo Culture: Occupy the condo, but first read the document

Q: What is a disclosure statement and how important is it regarding my new condo purchase? There is so much to learn, and I don’t want to make any mistakes when making my final decision. A: The purpose and contents of a disclosure statement are set out in Section 72(1) of the Condominium Act. This statement is essential and your sale is not binding without it. The contents will inform you if the condo is freehold or leasehold, describe the property and amenities, tell you whether the project is new or converted from another use, if any units will be for commercial use, whether the developer intends to sell blocks of units to investors and the proportion of units the developer intends to lease, restrictions on pets. Also copies of the existing or proposed declaration, bylaws and an insurance trust agreement will be included, as well as a copy of the budget and other financial details.

If recreational or other facilities are not completed, the statement will inform you of the schedule for completion. It will list the facilities and services the developer will provide during the period of interim occupancy, which is the period of time between you actually moving into the condo unit and the registration of the condo corporation.

It is imperative that you go over the disclosure statement with your lawyer in order for you to make a well informed decision. Ask all the questions you can and don’t assume anything. In order to avoid any unexpected disappointments you must research the condo before you buy, not after.

Marilyn Lincoln is a condo owner, director and author of The Condominium Self Management Guide 2nd ed. Send questions to To order a copy of her guide send $39.95 plus $4.98 shipping and handling to The Condo Guide, 163 Thaler Ave. Suite #302, Kitchener, Ontario N2A 1R4. - From the National Post

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