Merger of Two Semis

Question:

I have a client who is interested in purchasing the semi which is adjacent to her. I wanted to know if the titles would merge?

Answer:

The merger may or may not happen, depending upon how the titles are registered now. If they are part lots, then the titles will merge. If they are whole lots, then they won’t.

Even if they do, which is apparently what she wants, she will still have a zoning requirement where semis are in compliance and she can’t have one house without going to the Committee of Adjustment.

If she has two semis in one property parcel, that means that she can only sell both of them together. She will get less money. The properties will be devalued. She will not qualify for as large a mortgage as she would otherwise. That’s, of course, assuming that she maintains them as two separate households.

If she opens up a wall without building permits, she has violated the terms of her mortgage and the mortgage is due. She has also breached her insurance policy and may have no coverage whatsoever. That also violates the terms of the mortgage.

If she wants to buy the semi next door, the only sensible way is to hold that property in a name other than her own, or in the name of a separate company. Both properties preserve their value and can be independently conveyed and mortgaged.

With the title merger, assuming that happened, that is only a registry office issue, it doesn’t merge the “household” or provide any additional zoning rights.

Brian Madigan LL.B., Broker

www.OntarioRealEstateSource.com

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