Q: I have purchased a home in a rural area and am moving from the city for a quieter life. I have retained a lawyer in town to assist me with the sale of my city home and the purchase of my country house. Everything has gone very smoothly however, on closing, the keys for my new property were supposed to be left with the realtor out of town. My real estate agent who found me the new property is not being very co-operative and I have a moving van full of furniture waiting to be unloaded. What should I do?

 

A: The question of keys is a somewhat complicated one when it comes to real estate transactions.

 

Usually, the keys are given to your lawyer so that when the transaction is complete, they can provide them to the purchaser.

 

However, in cases where people are moving long distances alternate arrangements are often made.

 

In this instance, the realtor was holding the keys because he or she was local and it made the most sense to pick those keys up from them.

 

If your agent is being unco-operative, perhaps you can get your lawyer involved in order to insist that they provide keys in a timely manner. After all, you have paid for the home, your agent has earned a commission on their efforts and the issue of providing a key should be the least of your worries.

Jeffrey Cowan is the principal of Cowan Law and can be reached at jeff@cowanlaw.ca.